Australia vs Chile 2014 World Cup Preview

Dubbed the ‘Group of Death’ at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, opening games for Pool B will be held on Saturday morning, and will see Australia open their campaign with a match against classy South American outfit Chile at the Arena Pantanal, Cuiaba.

Clear favourites to start their 2014 FIFA World Cup campaign on a winning note, Chile will need to find good form immediately if they are to secure victory against a young Australian side known for upsetting ‘big name’ opponents in recent years, and progress to the knockout stage along with likely Pool champions Spain.

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Australia

How They Will Play

Far-more dangerous in attack that defence, Manager Ange Postecoglou is likely to opt for a 4-3-3 formation for Australia’s World Cup opener against Chile, adding the likes of defensive mid-fielders Mile Jedinak and Mark Milligan to further help what is likely to be a busy defensive line.

To ensure experience in the largely fresh-faced team that is likely to be fielded against Chile, well-trialled veteran Mark Bresciano will play a key role in connecting Australia’s defence to pacey wingers Matthew Leckie and Tommy Oar, as-well-as clear weapon Tim Cahill, who still ranks as one of the world’s best players in the air.

While a young team over most corners of the pitch, Australia exhibits keen ability, pace and skill on the ball, and are a legitimate chance of causing the 2014 FIFA World Cup’s first real upset if they can keep the ball away from key Chilean mid Arturo Vidal and strike weapon Alexis Sanchez, and offer Cahill legitimate chances when attacking.

Player To Watch – Tim Cahill

Representing Australia in his third World Cup in 2014, Tim Cahill was a standout performer for Australia in both Germany in 2006 and South Africa in 2010 and is without doubt the key to the Socceroos’ progression this campaign. Developing a key partnership with winger Tommy Oar, Cahill is more than capable of single-handedly dismantling the Chilean defence, while also helping to sure up a defensive contest in his own half.

Chile

How They Will Play

Chilean Manager Jorge Sampaoli is noted for favouring un-orthodox formations with his side, and is likely to field a team in a 3-4-3 pattern for their campaign opener against Australia this weekend.

A standout performer for Italian Serie A giants Juventus in what was a championship winning season most recently, midfielder Arturo Vidal is the linch-pin in connecting a slick attack with a rock-solid defence, but has been under something of an injury cloud since arriving in Brazil for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.

Boasting a forward line of Barcelona striker Alexis Sanchez, Napoli’s Eduardo Vargas and Palmeiras’s Jorge Valdivia, Chile will be aiming to maintain possession in Australia’s half, playing the likes of Cahill and Oar out of the game whilst keeping pressure on a young, somewhat inexperienced back line.

With Cardiff City centre-back Gary Medel arguably in career-best form leading into the FIFA World Cup, Chile are a solid unit all over the field and appear likely to walk away from Saturday’s match with three points.

Player To Watch – Arturo Vidal

A major reason for Chile’s recent spike in form, many are predicting Arturo Vidal to claim the player of the tournament in the 2014 World Cup, and it is matches like Chile’s campaign opener against Australia he will need to assert his dominance if any chance of the personal honour. Carrying a niggling knee injury into the tournament, reports on Friday suggest Vidal is an assured starter against Australia, and will be aiming to expose Australia’s young players in an attacking midfield role.

Predicted Result

Chile are clear favourites to begin their 2014 World Cup assault on a winning note, and with a potent offense complimented by a sturdy defence and dangerous midfield, signs do not look particularly promising for the Socceroos. Chile will control the middle of the field and not allow Australia out of their own half.

Proven performers in the heat of South America, Chile should have no issue in beating a spirited, but inexperienced Australian team.

Australia vs Chile World Cup Betting Plays

Chile are currently available at 2014 World Cup odds of $1.36 to beat Australia at leading online bookie Ladbrokes.com.au, with Australia offered at a generous quote of $7.50 to cause an upset.

With Australia hoping to salvage points wherever possible, punters might find value in placing a bet on a draw being the result between Chile and Australia, currently paying healthy odds of $4.70.

Aiming to spend a good portion of their time in Australia’s 18 yard box, placing a bet on a penalty being scored at any time during the match’s 90 minutes at $4 is definitely worth consideration.

World Cup Betting Promotions

Ladbrokes.com.au is offering punters unique betting markets and special offers on every fixture throughout the 2014 FIFA World Cup, including this weekend’s match between Australia and Chile. Punters who believe exciting striker Alexis Sanchez will find the next at any time against Australia, as well as a Chile victory can take advantage of impressive $2.60 odds, while those keeping the faith with Australia and anticipating a Socceroos victory capped with a Cahill screamer are arguably offered the best value for money with $12 odds.

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