The most prized possession in international soccer, the FIFA World Cup is played every four years and hosted by a different country each time. The first World Cup was played in 1930 and won by hosts Uruguay. They defeated Argentina in the championship match. Thirteen nations competed in the inaugural World Cup, which was also the only time participating teams weren’t required to qualify for the tournament. Brazil captured back-to-back World Cups in 1958 and 1962 and has a total of five championships — the most of any country.
Once a nation other teams feared, Brazil has fallen off the international map somewhat. Their last World Cup came 14 years ago at the 2002 tournament in South Korea.
Germany and Italy are right on Brazil’s tail with four World Cups apiece. The Germans are reigning champions, after defeating Argentina at the 2014 tournament in Brazil.
Former German striker Miroslav Klose is the tournament’s all-time top goal scorer with 16, followed by Brazilian great Ronaldo at 15.
The 2018 World Cup will be played in Russia, which beat out Portugal/Spain and Belgium/Netherlands to host the tournament. Russia’s best World Cup performance was in 1966 when it finished fourth overall.
Soccer World Cup Betting Lines Today
The World Cup qualfying round will heat up again in the fall when Argentina faces Uruguay on Sept. 1 in a highly anticipated match. A victory for Argentina would put them in the lead among South American qualifying teams. In other action, Brazil will face Ecudor on Sept. 1.
Keep track of all the qualifying matches using the competition widget — a helpful tool that also offers up-to-date odds to help you make your betting decisions easier.
Soccer World Cup Standings Right Now
Whether it's in the qualification stage or in World Cup group action, expect all the powerhouse nations to be near the top of the standings.
Brazil, Germany, Argentina, Italy, France and Spain are among countries always expected to be near the top of the table and battling for a World Cup title.
Follow where your team sits in the standings throughout the qualifying stage and into group competition as it will be a major factor in your betting decisions.
How To Win At Champions League Betting
A lot can change in two years when the 2018 World Cup gets underway. The Germans will enter the tournament with a similar, yet a bit older, team that won the 2014 championship.
That being said, Germany is still considered the favorite to win the World Cup outright as Bet365.com has the four-time champions at +500 to win its second consecutive title.
Argentina’s odds of +900 to win outright may change with the news of superstar forward Lionel Messi announcing his retirement from international soccer recently.
As always, you have to put Brazil in the mix of teams considered favorites to win it all. Bet365.com has the five-time champions at +900 to claim its sixth crown.
Some teams have already started playing qualification matches. In the South American qualification, Uruguay and Ecuador jumped out to solid starts as both are tied with 13 points apiece after six matches. Argentina is also in the thick of things with 11 points, while Brazil has been sluggish out of the gate with nine points through six matches.
The United States, which is +5000 underdogs to win the tournament outright, opened qualifying action on the right foot with two wins and seven points through four matches.
Ready to place your bet on the World Cup? Here are a few online sportsbook options to help make all your wagering decisions easier.