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2018 FIFA World Cup Group D Schedule and Game Predictions

Group D action begins on June 16 with games between Argentina and Iceland then Croatia vs Nigeria. Check out the latest predictions below.

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World Cup 2018 Group C

Argentina vs. Iceland

  • Date: Saturday, June 16
  • Betting Odds: Argentina -274 vs. Iceland +1039 – Draw +389

Argentina: Many people would argue that it is Lio Messi’s last shot at winning a World Cup with his country team. But, judging from the fact Argentina almost didn’t qualify, not even Messi’s magic might help them much more than it did in Brazil 2014 when they were the runners-up.

Argentina has a small army of talented players but nonetheless, success on the world stage seems to elude them. The Argentineans have won just one game in four official matches heading up to the World Cup including a 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Spain in one of their friendlies.

Despite having players of the caliber of Sergio Aguero, Gonzalo Higuain, and Angel Di Maria much of the burden is left on Messi’s shoulders. But, in a group that’s hard enough as it stands they’ll have to step things up if they want to avoid an early exit from the competition.

Iceland: Another team that many consider could be the dark horse of the World Cup. Iceland has been making waves after they defeated England in the 2016 Euro Cup and then went on to qualify ahead of Croatia and Ukraine for this competition.

The Icelanders may not have the caliber of players of many teams in the competition but they make up for it with grit and determination. With nothing to prove and not many expectations as a burden, Iceland could go on to surprise everyone.

Even if not many people expect Iceland to make it out of the group stage, if they manage a draw against Argentina in their first game it could lead to a second place.

Argentina vs. Iceland Pick and Prediction: Argentina is expected to win the group and the game which is hard to think otherwise; but, as we’ve seen before Iceland is no pushover and could take the fight to the South Americans. Regardless, Argentina will win 3-1.

Croatia vs. Nigeria

  • Date: Saturday, June 16
  • Betting Odds: Croatia -111 vs Nigeria +367; Draw +251

Croatia: There’s no shortage of talent in Croatia’s ranks, having players of the likes of Luka Modric, Mario Mandzukic, Ivan Rakitic, and Ivan Perisic. Nevertheless, they had to fight to qualify for the World Cup up until the end in a playoff for the second time in a row.

Croatia has reached the World Cup finals on four occasions and made it to the semifinals in 1998 when they lost to hosts France, so it has a long history of being a competitive team.

Through the qualifiers, Croatia gave up just four goals in 10 games only surpassed by Spain and England. It should be interesting to see how they hold up against a dynamic and quick Nigerian squad.

Nigeria: The Nigerians were the first to qualify from Africa, a region that is highly competitive and includes teams such as Cameroon, Zambia, two regional champions.

They defeated the current champion, Cameroon, 4-0 and also Argentina 4-2 in a friendly in Russia. Nigeria has also earned their spot in the last six World Cup finals, so underestimating them would be a mistake.

Leading up to this World Cup, Nigeria faced some internal strife that led to a penalization for fielding an ineligible player in their game against Algeria.

Croatia vs Nigeria Pick and Prediction: This probably won’t be a high-scoring game, but it’ll be interesting to see if either team can crack each other’s solid defense. Most likely the game ends in a draw, 1-1 is the final score.