On the Pitch, a Tale of 2 Countries
After a couple of games in Olympics soccer group play, there are a couple of big questions: Are Mexico's chances of defending their gold medal more realistic than we thought? And are Brazil's chances of winning their first gold less realistic? That could be revealed on Wednesday when the two teams play again.
Where They Stand
The Brazilian team has gone scoreless in two lackluster performances in Group A play. They played to a 0-0 draw vs. South Africa in the opener, then came back with another scoreless tie against Iraq. This is a home team with one of the best players in the world, Neymar. But that has not kept them from drawing jeers from their fans after paltry production. They now stand in second place in the group, two points behind Denmark.
Meanwhile, Mexico showed composure in fighting off Germany in a 2-2 tie in their first outing, then responded to an early deficit to whip Fiji, 5-1. Erick Gutierrez scored four goals in the win. Mexico is tied with South Korea at the top of Group C.
We might have seen this coming, since Mexico not only stunned Brazil to win gold in 2012, but has also performed well in under-20 and under-17 competitions in recent years. Brazil's internationals are still reeling from the 7-1 shellacking at the hands of Germany in the last World Cup.
Big Games Ahead
On Wednesday, Brazil faces Denmark in their final group game with their fate on the line. The Danes beat South Africa 1-0, and went 0-0 vs. Iraq to earn their four points in this low-scoring group. Another draw could take Brazil completely out of the elimination-round picture. A Denmark win would be devastating to the host nation. You would think the under would logically follow the trend. But you also have to think Brazil will break out of their funk before it's too late. Still, Denmark +1 1/2 at +101 looks like the bet. Meanwhile Mexico will face a tough test against a South Korea team that dismantled Fiji, 8-0, and battled to a 2-2 tie with Germany. Mexico should take this one and survive the group, but a draw (+250) is not out of the question in a three-way situation. Rio 2016 betting for soccer is in the regular soccer category in the SportsBook. Just check Olympics.
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