By William Hill
Last Updated: 5th June 2020
World Cup 2018 Group E houses the side many punters suspect will reign supreme – Brazil. It’s a mini-league the Selecao should dominate, but beyond them, there are plenty of betting opportunities to exploit.
Serbia to finish bottom @ 13/5
Costa Rica are clear favourites to prop up World Cup 2018 Group E, but Los Ticos have previous for going off script on the grandest stage.
They’ve been to four World Cups in their history and managed to avoid finishing bottom of their group three times. On two occasions they’ve actually navigated the group stage, while in 2002 only goal difference denied them a knockout berth.
Serbia, on the other hand, have finished bottom of their group in both World Cup campaigns they’ve reached since the break-up of Yugoslavia.
In 2006, the artist formerly known as Serbia and Montenegro (a team that featured current manager Mladen Krstajic) lost all three of their games and, while their 2010 delegation managed to win a match (against Germany, no less), they still trailed Die Mannschaft, Ghana and Australia in the opening exchanges.
A calamity that would look out of place on Fawlty Towers would have to strike for Brail to fill last place in World Cup 2018 Group E, while sturdy Switzerland’s propensity to keep clean sheets should see them score enough points to stay off the bottom.
With that in mind, the odds on Serbia losing their wooden spoon shootout with Costa Rica are too big to ignore.
Switzerland to keep a clean sheet against Brazil @ 5/1
It’ll be tough, but unlike the cheese Americans most closely associate with people from this nation, it’s hard to find holes in Switzerland’s defence.
They kept 11 clean sheets in 14 prior to their opening match of World Cup 2018 Group E, and they’ve stood firm to deny heavyweight nations in each of their past four major tournaments.
At the 2014 renewal, they stopped Argentina’s jewel-encrusted attack finding the net in 90 minutes, while they ensured Spain’s victorious 2010 campaign began in frustrating fashion, defeating the eventual champions 1-0 in the group stage.
France were held at the same phase of Euro 2016, while Portugal could find no way past the Swiss rearguard as they went down 2-0 at Euro 2008.