Brazil are heavily fancied to secure a routine win over Venezuela in their Copa America opener, with bwin pricing the Samba Boys as a 4/25 bet.
La Vinotinto are seen as rank outsiders, priced at 19/2, while the stalemate is available at 11/2.
However, while Brazil certainly have the talent and experience to cope with the challenge from Cesar Farias’ men, recent form shows the game could be closer to call than the betting market suggests.
Brazil have steadied the ship in recent ties, with wins over Scotland and Romania and a draw with Holland. However, those games followed successive losses to Argentina and France – results that will give hope to Venezuela.
By way of comparison, Venezuela, who are priced at 80/1 to win the tournament outright, have lost just once in their last five encounters, going down 3-0 to World Cup winners Spain.
La Vinotinto will also take comfort from the knowledge that last time they met Brazil they held them to a 0-0 draw, while also securing a 2-0 win over their rivals not long ago.
That said, three of the last five clashes between the sides have ended in a win for Brazil, with the Canarinho scoring three, four and five goals in those matches.
This could encourage a number of fans to look for football bets with higher returns, which could lead them to bwin handicap betting markets.
Opting to give Venezuela a 2-0 lead from the off sees Brazil’s winning odds move to 13/10.
A lot of the smart money placed on this match could also go toward the first goal scorer. With a vast array of attacking talent within the Brazil squad, some great odds can be had on backing who will break the deadlock.
Alexandre Pato is among the favourites to get the game up and running, with bwin pricing the forward at 3/1 to score first.
Santos attacker Neymar, wanted by a host of European clubs, is also considered a goal threat and is priced at 7/2 to delight the crowd with an early goal.
Those looking for better returns could be tempted by some of Brazil’s midfield stars, with Lucas, Sandro and Ramires priced at 25/1, 25/1 and 16/1 respectively.
While Brazil are almost certain to win, Venezuela have hit eight goals in their last five games and could prove a handful for Mano Menezes’ side.
Jose Manuel Rey and Giancarlo Maldonado are perhaps the most likely outlets for a goal from Venezuela and they are priced at 25/1 and 9/1 respectively to stun the Samba Boys’ fans and score the opening goal.
That said, should Brazil secure the win, they could attract a lot of attention from those betting on a outright winner of the Copa America and bwin offers odds of 37/20 on them holding on to their crown.
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