The final match in the Round of 16 is Tuesday between favourites Portugal and surprising Switzerland from Lusail Iconic Stadium
The Iconic Stadium will host players worthy of the occasion, chief among them the indefatigable Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Portuguese stand as -123 favourites on the World Cup odds, whereas Switzerland is +313 underdogs. A draw is valued at +246. The O/U is 2.25 goals.
Portugal vs Switzerland Betting Analysis
The history between the sides is somewhat misleading. At first glance the 11-5-9 to edge the Swiss seems surprising. That is until one realizes that eight of their eleven wins came prior to 1983. Since Portugal’s ascension as a football threat, the head-to-heads have been evenly matched. Even so, Murat Yakin’s side only just claimed a vital 1-0 in the Nations League in June.
For all their relative might, the Iberian nation has rarely done well at the World Cup. Regular appearances started 20 years ago at the Korean-Japan edition (there was a 3rd place finish in ’66). In the five tournaments since then, the Seleçao das Quinas stumbled in the group stage twice, likewise in the Round of 16, with a 4th place in Germany 2006.
A fourth opportunity to reach the quarterfinals in the past five editions presents itself to the A-Team. The task is tall against an opponent the likes of Portugal, but they can take inspiration from the fact that they rarely go out quietly. Ukraine needed penalties to do away with them in 2006. Argentina extra-time in 2014. Sweden squeezed by 1-0 in 2018.
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The journey through Group H was adventurous for Fernando Santos’ unit. The opening salvo against Ghana saw the Mediterranean men face tougher competition than bargained for. It was a spirited affair that ended 3-2 in their favour during which CR7 remarkably became the first-ever player to get on the scoresheet in no less than five World Cups.
Relatively speaking, the easiest game came against Uruguay. The 2-0 victory was courtesy of a brace from Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes. Ronaldo was a hair away from scoring again, pardon the pun. Despite what’s happened back in England, the two former club teammates have played well together.
With a place in the knockout round sealed, first place in the group was to play for. Were it not for Ghana faring quite poorly against Uruguay, we might be looking at a completely different group ranking, as South Korea stunned the Portuguese 2-1 with a match-winning score in the final minutes. Despite the blip, Portugal are graced with skill from players like Fernandes, Ronaldo, Bernardo Silva, Rafael Leâo, Joâo Felix, and Ricardo Horta to name a few.
The group stage demonstrated that this unit is no pushover. Showing more vim and verve than some might have predicted, they’ve delivered moments that made their supporters dream as big as the Alps themselves. The opening victory against Cameroon demonstrated a sturdiness against opposition attacks and an ability to counter with efficiency. The following 1-0 defeat at the hands of Brazil was far from an embarrassment.
It was the third and most critical contest versus Serbia that saw sparks fly. Goals came from a trio of starters, with Breel Embolo, Xherdan Shaqiri, and Remo Freuler all contributing. The latter netted the game-winner off some inspiring passing inside the Serbian box that made one wonder if the Swiss took notes from what the Brazilians made them suffer a game earlier.
Hope lies in the fact that Portugal has been questionable at the back.
World Cup Prediction: Who Will Win Portugal vs Switzerland?
Portugal 2-1 Switzerland