Argentina will head into this match with plenty of confidence considering they have an imperious record over Nigeria at the World Cup. It’s quite astonishing that the two teams have been placed in the same group five times in the last seven tournaments, and Nigeria certainly won’t have been happy to be pooled alongside them yet again.
Both sides will have already come up against the two European nations in Group D by the time this match kicks off, and should have an idea of their chances of progression to the Round of 16. Argentina are expected to breeze through this group, and whether they need all three points against Nigeria may prove to be a big factor in determining the outcome of this match.
Nigeria are certainly a chance of reaching the second round for the fourth time, and much will depend on their performances against Croatia and Iceland considering their abysmal record against the South Americans.
Context is always a factor in the third group stage matches. There is a possibility that Argentina won’t need to win to progress to the next round, and they may therefore rest their big names for the Round of 16. Nigeria could also be in this boat, although it’s more likely they will field a full-strength lineup regardless, to try and get one over their arch nemesis.
Regardless of context, Argentina will enter the match as the firm favourite, and start at -201. As the South Americans may not field their strongest lineup, you would perhaps be better off waiting until closer to kickoff before placing a wager. They will certainly drop in price if Lionel Messi and some of the other big names are rested.
The draw is available for +306, while Nigeria is at outsider rates of +591 for the unlikely victory. We’re sticking with the Argentines regardless of the team that is selected simply because their squad is too good, although we expect another close affair. 2-1 is our pick.
When: Tuesday, Jun 26 (2pm ET)
Where: Saint Petersburg Stadium, St. Petersburg
TV: FOX, Telemundo*