Best Bets and Finding Value for Tuesday’s World Cup qualifiers

Gabe Morency

Monday, September 4, 2017 2:54 AM UTC

Monday, Sep. 4, 2017 2:54 AM UTC

The battle to qualify for the 2018 World Cup rages on and several strong teams are in action on Tuesday September 5. As always there are some matches between evenly matched sides where you can.
<p>The battle to qualify for the 2018 World Cup rages on and several strong teams are in action on Tuesday, September 5. As always, there are some matches between evenly matched sides where you can go for the outrights, and there are some games where there is a huge favourite and you need to look at handicaps. Here we run through the biggest games and those offering the best value from a betting perspective:</p><p> </p><h3><a href="">Republic of Ireland v Serbia</a></h3> Ireland’s qualification bid has suffered a setback after they drew their last two games to leave them four points behind group leaders Serbia, with Wales just two points behind and breathing down their necks. While Ireland were held 1-1 by an unheralded Georgia side in Tbilisi, Serbia crushed Moldova 3-0 and they are yet to lose after eight group games. When these two met in Serbia it finished 2-2 and Ireland will provide a stern test for the Serbs, but it is hard to see Slavoljub Muslin’s side losing this one as they are very strong. Ireland are the favourites as they have home advantage, but Serbia draw no bet looks a good option here at 2.20 at Paddy Power as they are in excellent form. <h3><a href="">Iceland v Ukraine</a></h3> Iceland have continued to impress after shocking everyone by knocking England out of Euro 2016. They were on a three-game winning streak that left them level on points with Croatia at the top of Group I, but they will be disappointed to lose to Finland at the weekend. The Finns had taken just one point from six previous group games so that was a huge shock, particularly as Iceland had beaten them in Reykjavik. Now they face a Ukraine side that put in a superb performance to beat Turkey 2-0 in their last game, with Andriy Yarmolenko in inspired form. Ukraine have now leapfrogged everyone to top the group – Croatia’s game against Kosovo was abandoned due to a waterlogged pitch – and will be full of confidence. The 2.25 available on Ukraine drawn no bet at Paddy Power looks a really good option. Early in qualifying these teams drew 1-1 but Ukraine now have the wind in their sails and should get a good result. <h3><a href="">Turkey v Croatia</a></h3> Turkey will be demoralised by that 2-0 defeat at the hands of Ukraine last time out. Opponents Croatia will go into this away game fresh and full of energy after their match was abandoned and they can pile more misery on this Turkish side. Croatia are still odds-on favourites to win the group, ahead of Ukraine, and they have a very strong side. A midfield of Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic will overwhelm most teams in the world, while Mario Mandzukic is a quality striker and the likes of Ivan Perisic, Mateo Kovacic and Marcelo Brozovic are all excellent players. They could only draw with Turkey at home, but will come into this game fresher and more confident, so the 2.20 that Bet365 is offering on Croatia here looks good. <h3><a href="">Honduras v United States</a></h3> Over to North America, where the USA are struggling in their bid to qualify for the World Cup. They sacked Jurgen Klinsmann after losing their first two group games, and parachuted in Bruce Arena, the most successful manager in their history, to save the day. He sparked a revival but that has petered out somewhat and they lost 2-0 at home to Costa Rica a couple of days ago. They are third, well behind leaders Mexico and second placed Costa Rica, but know that all they need to do is stay in third to make it to Russia. The top three teams qualify automatically, while the fourth team goes into a playoff with an Asian side, so USA are currently where they need to be. But staying there will be tricky: they are on eight points, while Honduras also have eight but have a worse goal difference, and then Panama have seven points. It is unbearably tense and USA need to get a result here. This is a great fixture for them to get their qualification bid back on track as they hammered Honduras 6-0 at home shortly after Arena returned, and will have the psychological edge going into the game. They have struggled on the road, but Honduras are not in particularly good form, and a USA win looks good here with <a href="">betting odds at 2.29</a> with <strong>Marathon Bet &amp; <a href=";book=Matchbook">Matchbook</a>.</strong><p></p>
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