Best North American Team – 2018 World Cup
No North American team has made it past the quarter-finals of the World Cup since the USA made the semi-finals in 1930. However, with the USA having failed to qualify for Russia 2018, North America must rely on Mexico, Costa Rica and Panama.
All 3 teams are unlikely winners of the World Cup, however you can bet on which of the three teams will be the top American Team.
Top North American Team World Cup Betting: Mexico 1/6, Costa Rica 5/1, Panama 10/1
Mexico are second favourites for Group F, a group which includes current World Champions Germany, as well as play-off qualifiers Sweden and South Korea. Mexico have also qualified for the knockout stages of their last 7 World Cups and, though they have failed to get past the last-16 on their last 6 visits, achieving that again may be good enough to see them finish as the top North American Team. They also impressed in qualifying, with coach Juan Carlos Osorio’s shrewd planning and pacey attacking style seeing his team qualify with three games to spare. Key players include Jesus Corona, Hirving Lozano and West Ham’s Javier Hernandez.
Costa Rica reached the last-16 on their first visits to the World Cup Finals but, after exiting at the Group Stages in 2002 and 2006, they excelled themselves last time when reaching the Quarter-finals in Brazil in 2014. However, despite qualifying fir Russia 2018, not everything has been easy in the Costa Rican camp, with Paolo Wanchope resigning as coach after a post-match bust up. New coach and former midfielder Oscar Ramirez has stepped into the breach, but a recent heavy 5-0 friendly defeat against Spain suggests they could be up against it in a Group that contains Brazil, Serbia and Switzerland. Will probably need key players Keylor Nevas, Celso Borges and Bryan Ruiz to have outstanding tournaments.
The surprise of qualifying for their first World Cup saw the Government of Panama declare a national holiday, and it would be a bigger surprise if Panama qualified for the knockout stages. However, they did beat Costa Rica in their last qualifying match to make it to the finals. Their improvement in form can be attributed to coach Hernan Dario Gomez, who has previously steered both Colombia and Ecuador to the World Cup Finals. Will probably need their leading hitman Luis Tejada to have the best three matches of his life to reach the knockout stages.
As Costa Rica and Panama look unlikely to qualify for the Knockout Stages, from difficult looking groups, Mexico are the obvious favourites. However, as they’ll still have to finish first or second in the group to land those short-odds – 1/6 makes no appeal. If you fancy Mexico, it may be worth trying to find a price for Mexico to qualify from Group F, and that price will surely be bigger than 1/6.