Tip Egypt - Uruguay
Uruguay will start this game odds-on favourites to win their opening game of the 2018 World Cup finals. They had a good qualifying campaign finishing second in the South American group, three points clear of Argentina in third but a distant ten points behind Brazil. Their current FIFA World ranking is 14th and they have a great World Cup record having won the trophy twice and finishing fourth on two occasions. Their last victory was way back in 1950 but they finished fourth as recently as 2010. Current form is good with only a defeat by Austria in their last nine games and their last three games have all resulted in wins without conceding a goal. Up front they have too great strikers in Luis Suarez and Edison Cavani who between them have nearly 200 caps and 93 goals. Four of their squad have over 100 caps with another two likely to reach that mark during the tournament, so they are one of the most experienced sides in the competition. With games against Egypt and Saudi Arabia before taking on hosts Russia in their final game, the South Americans have every right to feel they wlll have qualified for the knock-out stages by the time they take on the hosts.
It's a nervous time for their opponents who are playing in their first World Cup finals since 1990 and only the third in their history. They will be hoping that their top striker Mo Salah will be fit to play after the shoulder injury he picked up in the Champions League final against Real Madrid. He hasn't played since that injury. Egypt won their group by four points to qualify for Russia losing just the one game out of six. You can see the importance of Salah as he scored five of their eight goals in the group. Their current form doesn't indicate they will be a major force in this group with no wins in their last six games and they have failed to score in three of the last four. Their most recent friendly was a 3-0 defeat in Belgium and with or without Salah, this game looks booked for a win for Uruguay.
Key points Egypt - Uruguay
Egypt have gone six games without a win.
Uruguay are ranked 31 places higher than their opponents.
Uruguay have only lost one of their last nine games
Uruguay have won their last three games without conceding a goal.
Conclusion Egypt - Uruguay
Uruguay will be a tough team to beat in Group A and can get their World Cup campaign off to a good start with a win over Egypt. The South Americans are in good form at present with just one loss in their last nine games and are strong defensively with no goals conceded in their last three games. With Cavani and Suarez up front, Uruguay will be a threat to anyone in this tournament and their side is packed with experience. They take on an Egyptian side that will be hoping that Mo Salah will be fit but even with him, they are likely to struggle in this tournament. They are in poor form at present and everything here points towards Uruguay kicking off their campaign with three points as they defeat Egypt.
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