FIFA World Cup Betting, Top Contenders And Predictions | inside World Soccer

When it comes to FIFA World Cup betting, all eyes are on the standout Group B when Spain defends its World Cup crown of four years ago.

In fact, the famed betting parlors in London, Las Vegas and Rio are all giving odds that Spain will repeat as victor. Spain also won the European Championships in both 2008 and 2012.

While the host Brazil team is a heavy favorite as well, all bets are now on Spain, the Netherlands, England and Argentina to meet in the final rounds.

World Cup Features Top Players

When top Spanish players Iker Casillas and Cesar Azpillcueta take on other international super star players, it will be for bragging rights as "best in the world."

Still, top World Cup gamblers are commenting online about "all bets are off this year" when it comes to choosing a real favorite team because "so many top stars are playing great."

For instance, the Netherlands team captain Robin van Persie has scored some "really big goals" in recent championship play, say fans.

In general, the Federation Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) is the formal title for what is generally called the World Cup.

This international football or soccer championship has been played every four years since its first tournament back in 1930.

The current World Cup tournament involves 32 teams going for the title, including this year's host team Brazil.

The original 1930 "mission statement" for the World Cup tournament is to "foster peace and harmony between nations," with football being the means for both recognizing and celebrating the athletic achievements of a nation's team members, coaching and the all-important fans and football clubs back in the homeland.

Top World Cup Teams

According to Las Vegas odds makers, the top teams for the 2014 World Cup include: Brazil, Germany, Argentina, Italy, Uruguay, England, France, Columbia, Japan, Spain, Mexico and the Netherlands.

Also, in the competition, but not expected to win the golden ball trophy, are the United States, Chile, Croatia, Turkey, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Sweden, Greece, Cote D'Ivoire, Poland, Austria, Portugal, Russia, Iran, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Belgium, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Honduras, Nigeria, Switzerland, Bulgaria, Algeria, Russia, Cameroon and the Korea Republic.

The World Cup continues play throughout June when the 32 teams will play at 12 football stadium venues located across Brazil.

The teams are divided into eight groups of four with the top teams in the various groups advancing to the famed "Round of 16" beginning June 28, states an official World Cup 2014 schedule overview.

According to longtime World Cup fans and betters, the big match-ups in the coming weeks include:

- Germany vs. Portugal, June 16
- Brazil vs. Mexico, June 17
- Russia vs. Korea Republic, June 17
- Australia vs Netherlands, June 18
- Spain vs. Chile, June 18
- Columbia vs. Cote D'Ivoire, June 19
- Uruguay vs. England, June 19
- Argentina vs. Iran, June 21
- Belgium vs. Russia
- Japan vs. Colombia, June 24
- Nigeria vs. Argentina, June 25
- USA vs. Germany, June 26

In general, the World Cup will continue into early July with the quarter-finals set to be played on July 4 and 5; while the semi-finals are scheduled for July 8 and 9.

The 2014 World Cup final will take place on Sunday, July 13 at the massive Estadio Maracana Stadium in Rio de Janerio.

If all goes to play, say fans, the final will pit Spain against Brazil, with the home team having the winning edge.

World Cup Betting

The world of "World Cup" betting today in 2014 is "simply massive," explained a betting odds expert from Las Vegas commenting online.

For instance, the expert noted online how the Netherlands Robin van Persie is 7/1 odds at earning the top goal scorer award; while top players such as Lionel Messi is 15/2, Arjen Robben is 14/1 and the ever popular Sergio Aguero is 14/1 to score the most goals in this year's World Cup play.

Overall, a consensus of odds makers worldwide has Brazil a 1/25 favorite to win, with Spain, Columbia, Argentina, Germany and England all viewed as 4/1 favorites.

After visiting one of the legal sports betting sites recommended here, it appears the sportsbooks have all the World Cup action covered through the July 13 finals.

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