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Argentina vs. Belgium Odds 2014 World Cup Free Picks – Quarter Finals

Belgium vs Argentina Prediction – July 5

We are getting to the nitty-gritty of Brazil’s World Cup, when the nerves and the hysteria are palpable. One of Saturday’s matches features a great match-up between an old-school South American powerhouse and a promising European side on the rise. [ad-1519080]

Date/Time: Saturday, July 5 2014, Noon EST
Venue: Brasilia, Brazil
Argentina -185, Belgium +155
MoneyLine: Argentina +110, Belgium +275, Draw +230
Over/Under: 2.5

The Argentines are the clear favorites in this match, but don’t discount Belgium and a very solidly constructed roster.

This is especially true because although Argentina’s Lionel Messi is otherworldly, the squad as a whole has underwhelmed to this point. For a side that can usually go on cruise control and still dominate opponents, it hasn’t come so easy in Brazil.

This should give a Belgian side some belief. Comprised largely of English Premier League standouts (Manchester City’s Vincent Kompany, Chelsea’s Eden Hazard, Tottenham’s Jan Vertonghen, Man. United’s Marouane Fellaini, among others) the Belgians combine a well-rounded team with one of the world’s elite young goalkeepers, Thibault Curtois.

The Belgians were also looking uninspired until their Round of 16 match against the USA. They attacked relentlessly in that match and looked like an entirely different side. Excellent American ‘keeper Tim Howard was the only thing that prevented Belgium from running up the score.
Make no mistake: Argentina possesses the talent to impose its will on Belgium, as strong as they are. They are under huge pressure on their home continent to make it past the quarterfinals – something the Argentines haven’t managed since 1990.

Much will hinge on how the rest of Argentina’s team responds. Belgium will almost certainly commit two men to Messi, and that should open things up considerably for the others if they can play some focused football.

The concerning thing is, there hasn’t been any evidence to this point that the rest of the Argentine squad can exploit the mismatch that comes from the opponent’s gargantuan task of marking Messi.

National legend Diego Maradona put it frankly (as he so often does): Argentina needs to play a lot better, or they will be in big trouble versus the Belgians.

As much as I respect Belgium’s squad – going into the tournament I thought they were more-well rounded then their Low Country neighbors, the Dutch – I see Argentina rising to the challenge. The Argentines should have a frenzied crowd behind them in Brasilia and the side has enough depth and talent to out-class almost any team in the tournament.

There’s been many examples in sports where a team starts slowly and gathers steam, while it finds a way to win in the meantime. If Argentina heats up at the right time, opponents will have far more than just Messi to worry about.

Quarter Finals World Cup Prediction

Argentina will likely make the journey heart-palpitating for its supporters, but I predict that world-class form to shine through. I do expect it to be very close.

This much is clear: Argentina cannot afford to play lethargically any longer. As you get into the later rounds of arguably the biggest sports tournament on the planet, one man can carry you only so far.

Argentina 2, Belgium 1 (extra time)

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