Confederations Cup 2017 Odds
While waiting patiently for the 2018 World Cup, football fans can get their fix of international competition this summer with the 2017 Confederations Cup, set to be played in Russia between June 17th and July 2nd.
The tournament will be spread out across four host cities - Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Kazan and Sochi, with a total of eight teams competing to lift the 10th Confederations Cup trophy.
The competition will be contested by World Cup hosts Russia, OFC Nations Cup winners New Zealand, Euro 2016 winners Portugal, CONCACAF Gold Cup winners Mexico, African Cup of Nations winners Cameroon, Copa America winners Chile, AFC Asian Cup winners Australia and current world champions Germany.
These eight teams will initially compete in two groups of four, with the top two teams from each group qualifying for the knockout stage of the tournament.
The Confederations Cup isn’t viewed as a major international tournament, but there is still plenty of reason to tune in - the tournament will have a new winner for the first time since 2005. Brazil have claimed the trophy on the last three consecutive occasions, winning in 2005, 2009 and 2013. However, having failed to win the World Cup or Copa America, this is the first time that Brazil won’t be present at the competition since it began back in 1997.
Brazil’s absence offers a chance for another national team to step up in their place, but which teams are favourites to lift the trophy in July?
The world champions always go into the Confederations Cup as favourites to clinch the title and this time that side is Germany.
The European heavyweights overcame France and Argentina at the 2014 World Cup and pulled off a phenomenal 7-1 thrashing of host nation Brazil along the way to lift the trophy. They have undeniably declined since, with the likes of Philipp Lahm, Per Mertesacker and Miroslav Klose announcing their international retirements following the tournament, with the likes of Bastian Schweinsteiger and Lukas Podolski soon joining them.
The nation now find themselves in the middle of a difficult rebuilding process, as was shown by their inconsistencies at the 2016 European Championship. However, they remain one of the best sides in this tournament and should reach the later stages.
Fernando Santos’ side are ranked second favourites by the bookies going into the tournament and will be confident that they can live up to expectations.
They don’t quite possess the quality of Germany, but the presence of Cristiano Ronaldo alone could carry them all the way. The Real Madrid star will be looking to add another international trophy to his collection following their Euro 2016 win and has enough about him to win games single-handedly. They pulled off a massive shock at Euro 2016 and could do so again in Russia.
Chile have gone from strength to strength since the 2014 World Cup, winning back-to-back Copa America titles in 2015 and 2016, overcoming the likes of Mexico, Uruguay and Argentina along the way.
Few would tip them over Germany, but they have shown in the past that they can navigate past the world’s very best sides. With a star-studded squad containing the likes of Gary Medel, Arturo Vidal and star man Alexis Sanchez, there are plenty of players that can make the difference for Juan Antonio Pizzi’s side.