Spearheaded by Thomas Muller, Joachim Low’s Germany (1/3, Bet365) impressively put Portugal to the sword in their engrossing, opening Group G clash.
Die Mannschaft were aided by the first-half dismissal of Portugal’s Pepe, but everything about their game was impressive and they surely would have won easily anyway.
It was in stark contrast to German’s recent friendly matches, in which they were constantly drawing 0-0 at half time and looked in desperate need of a striker.
Now, i’d expected the record-chasing Miroslav Klose (5/4 Anytime, Bet365) to be brought on at the interval after a goalless first period, but he wasn’t needed as German stormed into a 3-0 lead at the break, eventually winning 4-0.
The lesson for me is to remember that the Germans always snap into gear and win their first game comfortably in major tournaments. Of course, England beat Germany 5-1 on the road to World Cup 2002, in Munich, but it was Germany who made the final of the actual tournament, while England meekly exited after failing to take the initiative against a ten man Brazil team.
After his hat-trick against Portugal, Thomas Muller is the current favourite to be top scorer in Brazil 2014 at 5/2 with Bet365, and he’s understandably priced at a 4/7 with William Hill, Betfred and others to score his fourth tournament goal against Ghana.
However, Bet365 are offering Muller Anytime at 5/4 and, given the difference in price compared to competitors, I felt compelled to snap some up.
Ghana (10/1, Betfair) got off to the worst possible start in their opening Group G match, as the USA’s Clint Dempsey scored in the first minute. It took the ‘Black Stars’ a while to recover, but Andre Ayew eventually brought Ghana level in the 82nd minute.
Last minute heartbreak was to be their fate, however, as the USA’s Brooks gave the Americans a 2-1 victory with a header. Jordan Ayew, bother of Andre, had a really good chance to end the game all square, but couldn’t produce an effective shot.
All in all, former Sunderland striker Gyan had a few chances to score and played an import part in Ayew’s goal, but otherwise Ghana offered little offensively and looked like a faded force compared to what they were a few years ago.
Even still, should you fancy a Ghana scorer, Andre Ayew is priced at 7/1 with Betfair, while Jordan is offered at 11/2 with several firms.
Germany should be able to cover a -1.5 Asian handicap against Ghana, but I wonder if the Africans physicality and endurance will – as it did when Low’s boys won 1-0 in the last World Cup – keep the score low.
However, if we argue that Ghana have worsened since 2010 and that Germany have grown stronger, Germany – 1.5 Asian Handicap perhaps is the correct bet at 39/40 with Bet365.
God forbid, after it annoyingly failed against Portugal, that the HT/FT bet of Draw/Germany wins against Ghana, but it has to be considered at 7/2 with BetVictor.
In conclusion, I honestly can’t decide whether to go for the sensible option of Germany – 1.5 or attempt revenge on the HT/FT of Draw/Germany, but Muller Anytime – as mentioned earlier – has to be some kind of market value so I’m sticking with that.
However, If Muller anytime is much shorter when you’re ready to place a bet, go for the handicap instead.
Worth a punt: Muller Anytime (5/4, Bet365)