Mohamed Salah has had a sensational season for Liverpool this year, but he’s also enjoyed a meteoric rise to the ranks of national hero. His five goals in six World Cup qualifiers led Egypt to their first World Cup in almost 30 years.
The Liverpool forward injured his shoulder in the Champions League Final and hasn’t played since but boss Hector Cuper said on Thursday “I can almost assure you 100% he will play, save unforseen circumstances at the very last minute.”
Egypt’s warm up games though, haven’t been overly promising. They were well beaten at the hands of Belgium last week, with that 3-0 loss following on from a goalless draw against Colombia. They are now winless in six games and have lost three of them, so confidence isn’t exactly sky high ahead of the big kickoff.
Uruguay, unusually, have opted for only a single warm up friendly ahead of the tournament. They hammered Uzbekistan 3-0, and after their duo of China Cup wins in March they have now won three matches on the bounce and kept a clean sheet throughout.
It’s not exactly surprising that they are solid at the back. Their first choice centre backs consist of the impeccable Atletico Madrid duo of Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez, and they balance that out with the world class talents of Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani up front.
Suarez might get most of the plaudits at domestic level, but Cavani has been the star of Uruguay’s show recently. He topped the scoring charts of the South American World Cup qualifying stage, netting ten goals in their 18 games. He has continued in that vein with a goal in three of Uruguay’s last four matches, so we fancy him to get on the scoresheet here.
As far as the overall result goes, it’s hard to look beyond Uruguay here. They look to be much more solid all over the pitch and even though he’s back, Salah will be coming up against the mean defence of Godin and Gimenez. Three of Uruguay’s last four victories have seen them win by more than a single goal margin as well, so we like the look of Uruguay -1.0 Asian Handicap here.
13 of Uruguay’s last 18 games have seen at least three goals scored as well, so we’re also backing Uruguay to Win and Over 2.5 Goals, alongside a 3-0 correct score predictions.
What we need to win an Asian Handicap bet: Uruguay -1.0 Asian Handicap means that we need Uruguay to win by at least two goals. However, if Uruguay only win by one goal, we get a refund. If Uruguay draw or lose, we lose.
Egypt Predicted Lineup: El Hadary, Fathy, Gabr, Hegazi, Abbel Shafy, Elneny, Hamed, Hassan, Sobhi, Salah, Mohsen
Uruguay Predicted Lineup: Muslera, Pereira, Gimenez, Godin, Caceres, Acosta, Bentacur, Vecino, Arrascaeta, Suarez, Cavani
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