In reference to the odds to win the Women’s World Cup, the hosting nation (France) is one of the pre-tournament favorites, but there will be an abundance of competition for the mantle from a handful of other countries, including the defending champions, The United States.
Some of the world’s top women’s soccer players will be in France beginning this week as the 2019 Women’s World Cup kicks off. What are the odds, picks, underdogs of this tournament?
France (-500 to win group, +350 to win tournament)
Norway (+550, +3300)
South Korea (+1200, +10000)
Nigeria (+3300, +50000)
Team to beat: France– The host of the French side is looking to make amends from a heartbreaking quarterfinal loss to Germany back in 2013, and will have a passionate fan base on its side. They come in the tournament ranked number 4 in the world with their global star, Eugenie Le Sommer, who plays for powerhouse Lyon and she averages nearly half a goal per game internationally. Look for France to improve in this tournament.
Live Underdog: South Korea – The South Korean program in on the rise, having reached the elimination round in 2013 before bowing out to the French in the 16th round. Chelsea stalwart Ji So-yun leads the youthful side featuring up to 10 members of perennial South Korean champion club Hyundai Red Steel Angels. It could be hard pressed to even reach the elimination stage here, but with back-to-back Top-5 finishes at the AFC Women’s Asian Cup on its resume, South Korea is a legit talented team and won’t be a pushover.
Germany (-450, +550)
Spain (+450, +6600)
China (+1200, +6600)
South Africa (+6600, +50000)
Team to Beat: Germany– The absence of Anja Mittag, who retired from international competition in 2017, will be felt here, but the Germans have more than enough talent and star power to withstand. The 2016 Olympic gold-medal side will be led by a talented midfielder Dzsenifer Marozsan, who will be looking to add to her 32-goal international tally while helping Germany get over its stunning 5th place finish in the 2017 European Championship- a tournament is had won six straight times going in.
Live Underdog: China– It has been 20 long years since China finished a surprising second at the 1999 World Cup in the United States, but things are trending up for coach Jia Xiuquan’s crew. It posted a third-place finish at the Women’s Asian Cup while closing second at the Asian Games. A healthy Wang Shuang is pivotal to this team’s success. If she is on the field, China has the depth and talent to surprise the Spanish and advance out of Group B along with Germany.
Brazil (+137, +2500)
Italy (+600, +5000)
Jamaica (+8000, +100000)
Team to Beat: Australia– The Aussies are coming back a little frustrated after being knocked out in the quarterfinals in each of the previous three World Cup tournaments. However, the Matildas continue to play consistent and sensational soccer, having posted three straight Top-2 finishes at the World’s Asian Cups (including a win in 2010) and reaching the quarterfinals at the 2016 Olympics. Are they ready to take the next step? At +1400, it’s worth spending to find out.
Live Underdog: Italy- Milena Bertolini certainly has her work cut out for her at the helm of an Italian side that is making just its third Women’s World Cup appearance, and first since 1999. But it comes to France as one of the hottest women’s teams in the world, with seven victories and two draws from nine international matches so far in 2019. That includes a victory over the 18th- ranked Swiss- a great momentum and confidence builder heading into a very challenging draw for Italy.