Costa Rica and Serbia are prohibitive World Cup betting odds longshots. Yet much excitement is generated by such matchups. No game is too small to be ignored on soccer’s largest stage. In fact, many punters are eager to handicap such matchups. Assessing the value of two dogs is a challenge most find enticing. Beyond that betting value can often be found when lesser teams meet. Key of course is unlocking potential hidden gems. Thus, there is a risk reward factor unrivaled in sports. And why Costa Rica vs. Serbia will command betting activity.
Costa Rica vs. Serbia
Date and Time: Sunday, June 17, 2018, 8 a.m. ET
Location: Cosmos Arena, Samara
World Cup Betting Online Odds: Serbia – ½ (-101), Costa Rica + ½ (-116), Over 2 (-113), Under 2 (-102), Serbia even, Costa Rica +305, Draw +245
2018 FIFA World Cup TV Coverage: Check Listings
Serbia is a +17500 choice with the World Cup betting odds. “The Eagles” are currently ranked 35th by FIFA. It’s been quite a fall from their sixth ranking in 1998. It got so bad that Serbia did not even qualify for the 2014 World Cup. Prior to that was an uninspiring 23rd place finish in 2010. It has been 56 years since Serbia’s best finish. 1962 saw them post a final finish of fourth. It matched their effort of 1930. 1998 saw the Serbs climb into the round of 16. They ended up in tenth place.
Costa Rica is an even higher +25000 pick to win the World Cup. “La Tricolor” is currently ranked 25th in FIFA. Their highest ranking was 13th in the spring of 2015. On the positive they are coming off their best ever finish. In 2014 they made the quarterfinals. A final finish of eighth out of 32 teams did impress. And cause hope for the future. Problem is the team became too much of a sensation. This increases the worry about betting value. Public knowledge was not on Costa Rica four years ago. It is now. Beyond that teams will be ready for them. Taking “Los Ticos” for granted is not going to happen. Opponents will pay full attention. Nobody will be caught napping in 2018.
Head coach Oscar Ramirez will lead Costa Rica in his first World Cup. He replaced Jorge Luis Pinto. Ramirez led “La Sele” to a successful qualification. Costa Rica won with two games to spare. Ramirez has maintained the 5-4-1 alignment that Pinto employed so successfully. The strategy places a lot of pressure on Bryan Ruiz and Celso Borges. Ruiz coordinates the attack. Borges keeps things balanced. Star Keylor Navas is one of the world’s top goalkeepers. Navas plays for real Madrid. He has sportsbook bona fides of dealing with pressure. Overall Costa Rica should have enough for a credible knockout phase run.
Serbia has shown strong qualifying momentum. They lost only one out of ten matches. Of concern is the departure of head coach Slavoljub Muslin. Muslin was fired due to a conflict about playing style. New coach Mladen Krstajic opened things up. Consequently, star midfielder Sergej Milinkovic Savic was appeased. Savic has starred since the change.
Matchup to Watch
Costa Rica is a compelling World Cup betting odds dog. They have the more solid resume. Serbia is aging and overvalued here.
2018 FIFA World Cup Betting Odds Picks
Costa Rica is the value-based pick!
World Cup Betting Online Pick: Costa Rica
World Cup Betting Online Score Prediction: Costa Rica 1, Serbia 0
Check out a preview of Costa Rica’s World Cup prospects!