- I’m back for more on Day 2 of my $500 World Cup challenge to bet every single match.
- I’m learning that betting soccer is a wee bit complicated. I didn’t know until yesterday that something called the “Asian handicap” exists, and now I’m making that exact wager on the Uruguay vs. Egypt Over 2, 2.5.
- My motto in life: If a bet looks too easy, you absolutely have to take it.
Well, even I wasn’t expecting that kind of demolition. A 5-0 win by Russia to start my $500 #JOFFIFA challenge off on the right foot. (Terrible pun intended; I’ll show myself out.)
For those of you who missed my Wednesday column, The Action Network gave me $500 to bet on the World Cup. And by “bet on the World Cup” … I mean bet every single freaking game.
Oof. I’m already regretting this.
Even after an easy winner on Day 1, I’m not feeling super confident. You’ve been warned.
Current balance: $506.45
Uruguay vs. Egypt
8 a.m. ET, FS1
I went back and forth with this one mostly because I wasn’t 100% sure if Mo Salah (shoulder injury) was going to be play for Egypt. Last I checked he was, but who knows what will happen in the first five minutes. He can score but so can Uruguay, so rather than choose a side here, I went with the total. I’m still a little confused by what’s apparently called the “Asian handicap” (?????), but I’m fairly sure — read: not sure whatsoever — that I’m betting Over 2 goals at -106 with a chance to get back some money if it lands exactly on 2. I don’t know for sure, but this should be a fun early morning adventure.
The bet: $10 to win $9.43 on Over 2, 2.5 (-106)
Iran vs. Morocco
11 a.m. ET, FOX
I know nothing about either one of these teams, but based on research from The Action Network, it seems like Morocco has the edge here. Again, I’m still getting used to these soccer lines, but taking the spread at -0.5 had better odds than the straight moneyline, which seems too easy. When has THAT reasoning ever steered a bettor wrong?
The bet: $10 to win $11.50 on Morocco -0.5 (+115)
Spain vs. Portugal
2 p.m. ET, FOX
Most everything I know about Portugal traces back to Cristiano Ronaldo, who’s currently Dead To Me after beating my Liverpool team in the Champions League Final. Don’t get me wrong: Ronaldo is incredible in many ways, but I’m a little worried about his chemistry with his countrymen. Spain has some chemistry issues of their own, as they fired their head coach a couple days ago. How much of an impact will it have on them? How the hell am I supposed to know?!?! When all else fails, bet the draw. If that doesn’t ooze confidence, I don’t know what does.
The bet: $10 to win $22.50 Draw (+225)