#### The Highlights

• It’s OK if you have little to no soccer knowledge. You can still have success when betting the World Cup.
• Math is your friend. Use consensus projections to make value bets.
• Tunisia (+931), Korea (+528), and Sweden (+630) are the best Saturday plays using my method.

That hasn’t stopped me from betting on every World Cup match. It has gone about as well you might expect. Through Friday, June 22, I have compiled a 8-18 record.

But wait, there’s a twist. I’m +8.57 units despite being ten games under .500. What kind of sorcery is this?

If you haven’t noticed, the dogs have been barking in Russia.

Mexico (+675) over Germany, I had it.

Japan (+470) to win vs. Colombia, you bet.

I was also among the 20% of bettors who thought Croatia (+320) could topple Messi and Argentina. A \$100 bettor tailing my picks would be up \$857 for a 33.0% return on investment.

Here is each bet I placed:

So, what’s my secret? Math. To make my selections I’ve created a consensus World Cup projection based on predictions from ThePowerRank and FiveThirtyEight. If one model is good, two is better.

After determining each team’s chance to win, and the likelihood of a draw, I calculate the implied probability for each event based on the betting odds. If the consensus projection is greater than the implied probability, I place a bet.

See, math and betting can be fun! Now the part you’ve been waiting for … here are the plays I’ve made for Saturday using the above method.

### Saturday Selections

#### Belgium vs. Tunisia

8 a.m. ET

Nearly 80% of moneyline tickets are on Belgium, but Tunisia has moved from +1327 to +931. The implied probability of a Tunisia win is 9.7%. The models give the underdog a 12.1% chance of pulling the upset.

Play: Tunisia +931

#### Mexico vs. Korea

11 a.m. ET

Mexico shocked Germany in the opener. Is this a letdown spot for El Tri? Korea (+528) has a 19.6% chance of knocking off Mexico according to the consensus projections.

Play: Korea +528

#### Germany vs. Sweden

2 p.m. ET

Germany (-200) is the biggest favorite on Saturday. Despite a disappointing result in the team’s first game, almost 70% of bettors are backing Die Mannschaft. There is only a 19.1% chance that Sweden drops Germany, but at +630 (13.7% implied probability) there is value betting the underdog.

Play: Sweden +630

Credit:

Tim Groothuis/Witters Sport via USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Sweden defender Pontus Jansson