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Argentina Nigeria Betting – “La Albiceleste” Sneak Away From Opening Game With Victory

Posted by Todd Shale on 5/19/2010 2:41:09 PM

Online betting players should be in for a wild opening game in Group B, where familiar foes Argentina and Nigeria will square off. This has the makings of a wide-open affair between two teams that like to attack, and Argentina will grab a late goal to take all three points from the pesky Nigerians.

  • What: World Cup betting
  • When: Saturday, June 12th, 10:00 AM ET
  • Where: Ellis Park, Johannesburg, South Africa
  • Key Stats: Argentina is 3-1 all-time against Nigeria

The Storyline

Nigeria has been drawn into a group with Argentina in their two of their three trips to the World Cup, with Argentina winning by one-goal margins in both meetings. On the Olympic side, Nigeria beat Argentina in the 1996 gold-medal match, while the Argentineans got their revenge in the gold-medal match in 2008.

Who Has The Edge On Offense: Argentina Nigeria Betting

Everyone will be watching to see if Lionel Messi can carry over his Barcelona form over to the national team, but it’s not just about him. Diego Milito, Gonzalo Higuain, and Carlos Tevez all had great seasons for their club teams, while Mazi Rodriguez can still produce on the wings. The onus will be on manager Diego Maradona to come up with a scheme for them, as Argentina had some problems scoring goals during qualification.

Nigeria has a solid mix of youth and experience up front with Victor Obinna, Obafemi Martins, Victor Anichebe and Kanu, among others. Their key will be to find a midfield supply for their glut of strikers, and that may fall to Kalu Uche.

Edge: Argentina

Who Has The Edge In Defense: Argentina Nigeria Betting

Argentina still has to decide who their No.1 keeper will be, and it should come down to Sergio Romero and Mariano Andujar. Maradona also failed to select Javier Zanetti, who has had a great year at Inter Milan, which may mean more time for his club teammates, Walter Samuel and Nicholas Burdisso. Javier Mascherano is one of the best defensive midfielders in the world, and he’ll need to play extremely well to push Argentina to a sportsbook win in South Africa.

Joseph Yobo leads the Nigerian back four, while keeper Vincent Enyeama was one of three players to play in all 10 qualification matches, allowing only five goals. However, they didn’t face one team who was even close to having Argentina’s attacking prowess, so this will be a stern test for them.

Edge: Draw

Notable Injuries – Argentina Nigeria Betting

All of the main players for both sides should be available for selection.

Edge: Draw

Totals – Argentina Nigeria Betting

This has the potential to be one of the most exciting and open matches of the first round, as both will go forward with speed and skill. Neither team has a defense that you would want to trust either, and this could end up being a barnburner.

Edge: Over 2.5

Argentina Nigeria Betting Prediction & Outlook

Argentina is a -165 sports betting favorite in this contest, while Nigeria comes in at +485, and a draw is listed at +260. As we said before, there is a lot of national pride at stake between these two teams because of their history, and it’s not going to be an easy game for Argentina to stroll through if they play like they did in qualification. Look for Nigeria to match up Jon Obi Mikel against Messi, who may have a free role behind the strikers. It will be a high-scoring match (by soccer standards), but look for Argentina’s quality to snatch a late goal for a sports betting win.

Bet World Cup: Argentina -165



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