World Cup Previews; Holland plays Slovakia and Brazil plays Chile

28 June 2010

The Netherlands Arjen Robben (L) Dirk Kuijt (C) and Frank de Boer (R) run during training for the upcoming Round of 16 match against Slovakia. (Credit Image: © epa/ZUMApress.com)
The second half of the FIFA round of sixteen begins on Monday as Holland and Slovakia square off in the opening match of the day, followed by Brazil and Chile.

On Sunday, Jeff got both predictions correct, while Johnathan had 1 win and 1 loss. Jeff's record is now 25 wins, 19 losses, and 8 no results.Johnathan's record is 22 wins, 25 losses, and 5 no results.

Note: If we're using the handicap line, we will include what the spread is. If it spread is 0, a draw will mean no result. If we use the Over/Under line, just add the total number of goals scored in a match. Please note that this will all be based on the scoreline at Full Time (90 minutes). For betting purposes, only the result after 90 minutes are counted. Our odds are courtesy of Centsports.

10:00 am on ESPN: Holland v Slovakia
Johnathan Starling: This screams mismatch. Holland looked good, but not overly impressive, in their sweeping of Group E. Slovakia, on the other hand, looked about as ordinary a team that is left in the round of sixteen. With Arjen Robben coming back to fitness, and to form, I don't think this will be a competitive contest. My prediction is Holland -1 at -130. Might want to bet this one quickly before they make the spread bet on this one 1.5.
Jeff Hash: The Dutch may have won all three games in the group stage, but we all know this is where everyone has to stand up and be counted.  The good news for the Netherlands is that they have more than enough to rise to the moment, and Arjen Robben could play a whole game.  Slovakia did well in a tense encounter over Italy, but this side in orange is so much better than the Italians, its kind of hard to figure how seriously to take that.  This is not the game the Dutch will go out in, though the next one will be a mammoth challenge if they start seeing the cards fly.  I expect both teams to get goals, so I'll take the over 2.5 goals at +110.

2:30 pm on ESPN: Brazil v Chile
Johnathan Starling: Chile were a very pleasant surprise during the group stages, but really screwed themselves against Spain. Two players picked up their second yellow card of the competition, and a third was sent off before halftime. Brazil gets back their play maker in Kaka, and I'm sure he'll want to make the entire world forget about his sending off against Ivory Coast. I don't think this one will be close either, as I not only expect Brazil to turn up the style, but for Chile to attack as they have in the group stage, which won't help them one bit. My prediction is Brazil -1 at -115. I think this game has either 3-1 or 4-1 to Brazil written all over it.
Jeff Hash: The main event of the South American sides (which will finally see one get sent out of South Africa) is, unfortunately, not going to be the most pleasant of games.  The deck favors Brazil a lot more thanks to the three missing Chilean players, and Brazil won both head to heads by multiple goals during qualification.  The return of Kaka and a healthier Robinho just makes the screws turn even harder on the underdogs.  The one other these two teams do is score in bunches, which should be a continuing trend in this game.  My pick is the over on 2.5 goals at +105, and I'd probably run that with John's pick of Brazil on the handicap as well.

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Johnathan Starling, the self proclaimed 'most brutally honest man on the net, dishes out his own unique brand of opinions, and analysis on the Premier League, Bundesliga, and all things US Soccer.

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