Portugal (0-1) vs. United States (1-0)
|Date & Time||Sunday June 22, 2014, 6:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: United States +300
In what may be the most watched World Cup game in US history, the United States and Portugal will play Sunday evening in a huge match in group G.
The United States was able to dodge 21 shots from Ghana to end up winning a thriller in its opening round, 2-1. The U.S. had the ball only 40 percent of the match and was on its heels defensively for much of the match. While it wasn’t the best performance, a win is a win for the United States and they’ll certainly take it. One concern for the United States is that Jozy Altidore has been ruled out for this match with a hamstring injury. Altidore is one of the United States biggest playmakers and has 10 international goals in his last two years. Clint Dempsey suffered a broken nose and may be forced to wear a mask, which could certainly effect his breathing in this matchup.
Portugal was absolutely embarrassed in its opening round in a 4-0 loss to Germany. Portugal controlled the ball for only 46 percent of the match and couldn’t get a single one of its nine shots on goal to find the net. To make matters worse for Portugal, Pepe won’t participate in this match due to receiving a red card and Cristiano Ronaldo is questionable with an injury. Ronaldo continues to nurse a knee injury and really destroys Portugal’s chances if he can’t go on Sunday. Key defender Fabio Coentrao is also out of the match with an injury. With Portugal on its heels, youngster William Carvalho will need to rise to the occasion.
This has the looks of being another wild win for the United States. We’re not sure which Portugal team is going to show up after getting beat down in its last match, and all of the injuries are sure to take its toll. While the U.S. has its own injuries to deal with, the team still brought the energy and seems to be soaking in this underdog role.
The value is on the U.S., and that’s my play.