United States vs. Canada World Cup Qualifier Odds, Picks & Betting Predictions For Sunday’s Match

United States vs. Canada World Cup Qualifier Odds, Picks & Betting Predictions For Sunday’s Match article feature image
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John Dorton/ISI Photos/Getty Images. Pictured: Manager Gregg Berhalter of the United States Men’s National Team.

  • The United States takes on Canada in Sunday's World Cup qualifying match.
  • Both nations are coming off disappointing draws in their opening games earlier this week.
  • Ian Quillen breaks down the contest below and explains where he's found betting value on the Americans.

United States vs. Canada Odds

United States Odds -175
Canada Odds +450
Draw +270
Over/Under 2.5 (-105 / -130)
Day | Time Sunday | 8 p.m. ET
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After a satisfactory but uninspiring draw in El Salvador on Thursday, the United States looks to open its home slate of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying with a win against Canada on Sunday in Nashville.

The Americans rarely looked threatened in the first match, but also didn’t generate as many clear-cut opportunities as some might have expected.

An up-and-coming Canada squad also underwhelmed in its opener, settling for a 1-1 draw against Honduras in which both teams scored from the penalty spot.

The U.S. won the last meeting between these sides during group play at the CONCACAF Gold Cup back in July.

United States Hoping Pulisic Can Play in Showdown

This U.S. squad — with the majority of its European-based players — is considerably different from the largely MLS-oriented group that squeezed out a 1-0 result in July’s group finale.

However,  the Americans might be without Chelsea winger Christian Pulisic for a second consecutive match after he didn’t make the trip to El Salvador.

The 22-year-old is coming off 10 days of isolation due to a positive COVID-19 test in England. He was vaccinated and appeared to deal with few, if any, symptoms. Howeve, the lack of training time early in the European season means he’s trying to regain his fitness level.

It’s not so much his contributions out wide that the Americans missed against El Salvador as his presence as a secondary scoring threat, given the roster carousel at the center-forward position.

With Gyasi Zardes injured, manager Gregg Berhalter has Josh Sargent, Jordan Pefok and Ricardo Pepi to choose from in that primary scoring role.

Sargent got the nod Thursday before he was spelled by Siebatcheu after halftime.

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Bayern Munich Star Davies Powers Canada

Led by Bayern Munich left back Alphonso Davies and Lille forward Jonathan David, Canada very much have a pedigree at the top of its roster similar to what the Americans have with Pulisic, Giovanni Reyna (Borussia Dortmund), Tyler Adams (RB Leipzig) and Juventus standout Weston McKennie.

Aside from Davies, who started as an out-and-out midfielder before transitioning to a fullback role m, the balance of manager John Herdman’s talent is in the front five.

Yet, without experience at this round of qualifying since the 1998 cycle, it’s fair to ask if the culture of this national program is able to withstand the meat grinder of the upper CONCACAF echelon.

Their debut performance did nothing to silence doubts.

Honduras created its share of chances, but the more frustrating aspect of Canada’s day was an inability to expose a Honduran back line anchored by 38-year-old Maynor Figueroa and two defenders based in the country’s modest domestic league.

Herdman made only two subs in the opener, with Tajon Buchanan and Junior Hoilett each taking a half of duty.

Besiktas striker Cyle Larin converted Canada’s second-half penalty.

Betting Analysis & Pick

On the surface, oddsmakers appear to be giving Americans too much credit.

Dig a little deeper, though, and I’d argue it’s the Canadians who are overvalued against a U.S. team whose residue from failing to reach the 2018 World Cup might be showing up in the betting market.

Since 1998, the Americans have won 24 of 30 home final-round qualifiers, and won while keeping clean sheets in 20 . If you take out matches against Mexico — the other regional power — the U.S. is a winner 20 out of 24 times, while keeping a clean sheet in 16 of those wins.

Even in the failed 2018 cycle, the Americans won three of five home games, and three of four that weren’t against Mexico, keeping clean sheets in all their wins.

If you believe -175 odds and an implied 63.6% probability on the U.S. money line is accurate value, then you are saying one of three things:

  1. Canada is very obviously a tier above the rest of the eight teams in final round.
  2. The U.S. is very clearly still as flawed as the squad that failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.
  3. There is demonstrably more parity in the region now than at any point in those previous six qualifying cycles.

The only idea of these I could possibly buy is No. 3, and even that’s a stretch if you know your CONCACAF history.

This American team is clearly more talented than the last cycle, and the biggest difference might be in its depth at the back.

That said, I’m playing the U.S. to win to zero at +130 odds and an implied 43.5% probability. It’s something the Americans  have done in two-thirds of their home qualifiers at this stage.

Pick: U.S. To Win To Zero (+130)

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