By William Hill
Last Updated: 25th June 2018
Monday 25th June
Kick-off: 7:00pm BST
Stadium: Kaliningrad Stadium, Kaliningrad
Spain vs Morocco, permutations of Group B
With Morocco’s elimination confirmed, the top two places are still up for grabs with Spain and Portugal sitting on four points and Iran right behind on three. A point for Spain against Morocco would see them qualify.
If Spain lose however, they must be hope Portugal beat Iran – or Portugal lose to Iran in a heavier manner than they (Spain) hypothetically lost to Morocco.
Interestingly, Spain and Portugal have the same amount of points, goals scored and goal difference but Spain tip Portugal to the top of the group because of their superior Fair Play record.
If both Portugal and Spain suffer defeats then team with the bigger loss would be eliminated. If they both win then the team with the biggest win will finish top of Group B.
Odds of 8/15 about La Roja winning the section anticipate a routine victory over the Moroccans.
Spain vs Morocco odds
Morocco have lost both of their games without scoring, so it’s no surprise that they are 4/11 to be beaten once again by Spain.
However, they were desperately unlucky against Portugal, outplaying the European champions for most of the contest but paying for an early lapse at a set piece.
If you think they can cause the 2010 winners problems, you can get odds of 15/4 for the draw or 8/1 on a victory for the Atlas Lions.
Spain vs Morocco team news
Spanish reserve goalkeeper Pepe Reina is a doubt for this fixture as is Nacho Monreal, who recently recovered from a minor problem. However, both players were unlikely to play a role regardless.
Morocco could rotate their squad with elimination already confirmed. Sofyan Amrabat, Youssef En-Nesyri and Mehdi Carcela could all start their first game at the tournament.
Spain midfielder Koke was dropped for the win against Iran for Lucas Vazquez and new Spain coach Fernando Hierro may choose to stick with that decision.
Spain vs Morocco match stats
Three of the four fixtures in World Cup Group B, including both involving Morocco, finished 1-0. A correct score bet on a Spain 1-0 win is 11/2, while odds about a shock success for their opponents by the same margin are 16/1.
Though Spain are unbeaten in a formidable 22 matches, they have alternated between draws and wins in the last six, with a draw due next in the sequence.
Morocco have played 10 times across qualifying and the group stage – none of those encounters saw both teams score.
Spain key players to watch – Silva a viable first goalscorer betting alternative to Costa
Diego Costa made the controversial decision to switch allegiances from Brazil to Spain in 2013 and it certainly wasn’t an immediate success.
In his first two and a half years as a squad member, he found the net just once – in a Euro 2016 qualifier against Luxembourg that they already led 2-0.
The Atletico Madrid striker has come good in time for his second World Cup though, firing five times in qualifying and three times already at the tournament.
Costa notched twice against Portugal and got the only goal in fortuitous circumstances against Iran. It’s 10/11 that his perfect record continues against Morocco, while a Costa goal in a Spain win is available to back at odds of EVS.
Four Spaniards shared top-scoring duties during World Cup qualifying, with David Silva one of the quartet to net five goals.
Interestingly, no teammate could trump the Manchester City midfielder in terms of breaking the deadlock.
Therefore, Enhanced Odds of 8/1 (from 6/1) on Silva being the first scorer in Spain vs Morocco looks a tempting bet.
What’s more, Silva leads the Spanish ranks for goal attempts at the World Cup thus far, firing in eight shots on goal during his 176 minutes of action. This is three more than chief striker Diego Costa, with the duo locked together on five apiece from inside the box.
We’ve already seen Jesse Lingard and Xherdan Shaqiri get recent rewards for continuously getting into scoring positions and Silva looks a logical candidate to be next. No midfielder at the World Cup has had more attempts without scoring.
Alternatively, Silva is 19/10 to net at any time in the 90 minutes against Morocco.
Morocco key players to watch
Morocco’s biggest name and captain Medhi Benatia hasn’t produced his best form in World Cup Group B thus far.
Watford’s Nordin Amrabat has been one of their brightest performers, even though the decision to play him against Portugal breached guidelines on rest periods after head injuries.
The winger is quote at odds of 5/1 to do what none of his teammates have managed to date and score.