Sipa USA-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Belgium celebrating a victory
The World Cup semifinal kicks off on Tuesday afternoon at 2 p.m. ET with France taking on Belgium. Les Bleus are slight -130 favorites to advance to the final with Belgium listed as +115 underdogs.
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Here’s a look at the offshore betting market and how the public has bet each team throughout the tournament.
Keep in mind that all moneylines, spreads and totals are based on 90 minutes of regulation
France opened +143 to win in regulation and briefly dropped down to +139 and there hasn’t been much line movement yet. Belgium opened as +217 underdogs and their odds have basically hovered around there over the last couple days.
At the time of publication, 51% of the bets has come in on France while 37% are on Belgium. The remaining 12% of bettors have decided to take the draw.
Sportsbooks around the market are comfortable with the current odds and action that they’re getting on both sides, yet they have moved the ‘draw’ line quite a bit. After opening at +217, the draw rose to +230 before settling in at +224. This is an indication that the market hasn’t received much sharp money on the draw yet, and public bettors have steered clear as well.
This has been one of the most lopsided public bets of the entire tournament with 91% of tickets on the over (2.5). It should be noted, however, that sportsbooks opened the total at 2 goals and smart money quickly forced oddsmakers to increase it.
Even after sportsbooks increased the total to 2.5, it wasn’t enough. The juice on the over was initially at +125 but now it’s at +110, signifying even more money coming in on the over.
I’m still very surprised that oddsmakers would open the total at just 2 goals considering Belgium’s potent attacking unit and the fact that they haven’t been great defensively. This is a big deal for early bettors who only need two combined goals for a push, so it’s a low-risk wager.
Public Support Throughout World Cup:
France have received the majority of tickets in all five matches thus far and have rewarded bettors in four of them. They began the tournament as big favorites and squeaked by both Australia and Peru. They were clearly the better team and rightful winners against Argentina and Uruguay.
Overs are 2-2-1 in France’s matches so far.
Despite winning all five of their matches, public betting percentages and odds have been all over the place for Belgium. They received the majority of bets as big favorites against Panama, Tunisia and Japan, but closed with just 40% against England and 34% against Brazil, both victories as +260 underdogs.
Overs have gone 4-1 in Belgium matches so far.