When: 4:00PM, Sunday, June 17th, 2018
Where: Luzhniki Arena, Moscow, Russia
Germany begin their defence of the World Cup title which they won in Brazil four years ago against Mexico on Sunday. Both of these sides have strong recent World Cup records with Mexico having reached the knockout round in each of their previous six appearances, whilst Germany will be looking to win their fifth trophy in Russia. Germany are many people’s tips to win the World Cup and they are certainly always there or thereabouts in big tournaments, but I just can’t see them going all the way this time.
Germany were very impressive in qualifying, winning every single one of their matches and scoring 43 goals in the process, but since then they have struggled somewhat. The Germans won just one of their six warm up matches for this World Cup and there has been plenty of talk about the decision to leave Leroy Sane out of the squad. These two sides did meet in the final of the Confederations Cup last year in a game which Germany won 4-1, and indeed Germany have beaten Mexico on each of the five previous occasions they have met.
Mexico fared slightly better in their warm up matches, winning four of their seven games, but there is still a lingering feeling that this Mexican side are well short of previous sides that they have sent to the World Cup. Much of the Mexican hopes will be placed on Hirving Lozano who scored 17 goals in 29 matches for PSV last season as well as grabbing two goals in the warm up matches. Mexico will be hoping to get at a German defence which has failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last five matches.
Germany should have far too much quality for a fairly weak looking Mexico side on Sunday as Group F kicks off in Moscow. I think Joachim Low’s decision to leave Sane out of his squad was a poor one though and this German side look a little short of quality in attacking areas. They should have too much about them to beat Mexico here though and I fancy them to win by one or two goals.
Betting Tips (Coral)
As you would expect, Germany begin this game as favourites with the bookies pricing them up at odds of 1/2, whilst a victory for Mexico is available at 11/2, with the draw priced up at 13/4. Despite the fact that Germany have failed to keep a clean sheet in any of their last five matches, I am backing them to do just that here and win to nil, something which is available at odds of 31/20 – check a Ladbrokes review to get to know more. Timo Werner should start the game up front for the Germans and he will be looking to take his chance in the side, with the giant striker available at 10/3 to open the scoring.
Germany to Win to Nil – 31/20 (Coral)