International Friendly: USA V Czech Republic Betting – Wednesday, 26th May

25th May 2010 | World Cup Betting category: World Cup Previews & Predictions
World Cup Previews & Predictions

 USA V Czech Republic

Wednesday 26th May, 01:00 GMT
International Friendly
Live coverage can be found by logging into your Bet365 account.

 

USA coach Bob Bradley, whose son also play for the USA national team, has prepared a tough assignment for his players ahead of the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa in June by organising a pre-World Cup friendly with the Czech Republic – A repeat of the Group E clash back in the 2006 FIFA World Cup held in Germany. A brace from Thomas Rosicky and a goal from giant Jan Koller was enough to send the Czech’s home happy in a convincing 3-0 win in Gelsenkirchen, but with Michal Bilek’s men failing to make the 2010 South Africa cut and USA making the finals with something to spare, will Bradley turn the tables by recording an important victory ahead of a big summer of football for the US.

 

It’s been reported that the USA, despite putting a number of others sports above football in terms of priority and popularity, have purchased more tickets for the World Cup than any other nation excluding, of course, the hosts, South Africa. That says all you need to know about the growing popularity of the sport over in the US, with kids slowly but surely considering a future in ‘Soccer’ with the MLS (Major League Soccer) a real possibility for these youngsters. While the progress of football (Soccer) is steady, some serious in-roads in South Africa from their national team would certainly speed proceedings along nicely. The US will, however, need to fare a whole lot better than in their previous appearance in a World Cup – Germany 2006 – when they finished bottom of Group E, after recording a draw and two losses.

The target for Bradley and his industrious US team will be to qualify from a favourable looking Group C alongside England. It’s safe to assume that, in all probability, the English will take up one of the two available qualifying spots leaving the US to out-muscle and out-gun Algeria and Slovenia. Their display at the 2009 FIFA Confederations Cup – the warm up event before the FIFA World Cup – would suggest USA have solid claims for a top two finish in Group C, finishing the tournament as runners-up after previously ending Spain’s 35 game unbeaten run in the semi-finals with a 2-0 win. However, it should also be noted that in the same tournament the US were beaten 3-1 and 3-0 by Italy and Brazil respectively, as well as suffering a bitter tasting 3-2 defeat in the final itself, once again to the Brazilians. It was a tournament in which the US rode their luck to make the semi-finals but also one where they seized their golden opportunity, their second life if you like, with both hands.

One trait that has always plagued the US from a football point of view is their inconsistency, as the Americans always been a hard-working bunch of lads with a tint of resilience about them. The USA are a side which can produce the big performances on the big occasions, but it’s the sheer fact they don’t perform to the high standards needed on a more consistent basis which has held them back from really achieving their full potential in a major tournament. The US have, though, two games before they take on England in their opening Group C encounter on June 12th to string a run of results together. They take on a talented yet recently underachieving Czech Republic side on Wednesday 26th May in the US and then another team who had the potential to make the finals but didn’t in European’s Turkey, once more on US soil.

Considering how the USA fared back in Germany 2006, we feel it’s imperative that they head into South Africa with some momentum, some form to really shout about, and that means securing two win in their pre-World Cup friendlies are pivotal in their chances of making the last-sixteen of a World Cup for the second time in their last three finals. Bob Bradley has yet to whittle down his 30-strong provisional squad, of which we expect the maximum of 16 will be used in full on Wednesday, but Bradley will know the importance of gaining some steam ahead of the finals, so we expect nothing less than a strong US side for this match with the Czech’s with the aim being to register a huge pre-tournament victory.

 

The Czech Republic have always been a tidy little footballing nation, although they are one which massively disappointed during qualifying for the FIFA World Cup in South Africa, finishing third in Group 3 in the European sector beneath Slovakia and Slovenia. It means some big European names won’t be heading to South Africa this summer, at least not to play football, as the likes of Thomas Rosicky (Arsenal), Petr Cech (Chelsea), Jaroslav Plasil (Bordeaux) and Tomas Necid (CSKA Moscow) all miss out on some African festivities. Even so, the Czech’s have a very good selection of players and will provide the USA with a thorough examination. A player to watch out for is CSKA’s Tomas Necid, a player with quick feet and a keen eye for the goal.

 

Match Odds:

USA – 2.00 Bet365
Draw – 3.40 Boylesports
Czech Republic – 4.00 WilliamHill

 

Our Prediction: Czech Republic to WIN – 4.00 WilliamHill

Home soil should help the Americans, as well should the fact a World Cup is just around the corner for them and not for the Czech’s. However, even so, the Czech Republic, in our honest opinion, have a stronger team than the US and possess some lively and dangerous characters. Michal Bilek, the Czech Republic coach, struggled to stamp his mark on the team during qualifying but sooner or later they will get it right, the team will slot together and become the tidy force of old. The Europeans will get the ball down and play crisp on the floor football, and while the US will work their socks off as per usual, the technical ability of the Czech’s could prove too much for the US, whom just might be feeling the strain, that expectant pressure to perform in order to make Bob Bradley’s final 23, in the knowledge that a World Cup is only a few weeks away and that Bradley’s official squad will be announced imminently.

Our Recommendation: Czech Republic to WIN 1-0 (Correct Score) – 10.00 PaddyPower




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