Korea Republic (0-1-1) vs. Belgium (2-0)
|Date & Time||Thursday June 26, 2014, 4:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: Belgium -130
Belgium and Korea Republic will take the field Thursday afternoon for a World Cup match.
Belgium has cruised through its first two matches with convincing wins over Algeria and Russia. Belgium has relied on its great defense throughout the tournament that has allowed just one goal in its first two matches, which the offense controlled the ball 53 percent of the time against Russia. It may a dangerous and conservative way to play, but coach Marc Wilmots seems pleased and it’s worked thus far. Belgium is far from the most experienced team, but you wouldn’t know that by watching them play fundamentally sound soccer. To prepare for this game, the starters from the last match were absent during training, while the bench was given more practice time.
Korea Republic was simply outmatched in its 4-2 loss to Algeria and will need a win in this match to have any chance of advancing. Despite controlling the ball 54 percent of the time, South Korea allowed 15 shots and eight shots on goal, much more than its offense was able to generate. The good news is that Son Heung Min found the net, and he’ll have to step up big in this match for Korea Republic to have any chance. Coach Hong Myung-bo addressed his team’s defensive issues at the end of the match and expects a much more energetic and aggressive team this time around.
South Korea is a much better team than what they’ve shown lately, but it’s too late in the tournament to expect such a drastic change from what we’ve seen. I like the value of Korea Republic in this spot, but the safer bet is the over.
Korea Republic will be a lot more aggressive offensively and its poor defense will give Belgium plenty of chances to find the net.
I’ll take the over.