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Colombia to compound Costa Rica Copa America woe, crunch clash for Brazil

Holly Thackeray | June 9, 2016

The Copa America centenary continues to make for scintillating viewing, with Coral providing a brilliant backdrop of value betting for punters’ pleasure.

As the group stage begins to draw to a close, with just one more pool match for each nation from Sunday, expect the goals to flow as several sides make last ditch dramatic attempts to stay in the competition.

Momentum is with Jurgen Klinsmann’s USA but they must beat or draw with Pool A progression rivals Paraguay to avoid an upset, while already qualified Colombia clash with Costa Rica aiming to stay top of the group summit.

While, in Group B, things are also finally balanced as Ecuador aim to pip Peru to second place by beating eliminated Haiti, as leaders on goal difference Brazil battle the Incas themselves.

USA v Paraguay

  • Copa America, Group A
  • Sunday, June 12th
  • Kick-off: 00:00 BST
  • Lincoln Financial Field, Philadelphia
  • Live on Premier Sports

Stars and Stripes still not assured of second

Copa America hosts the USA rescued their campaign from the jaws of elimination last time out with an emphatic three points nabbed in comprehensive fashion from Costa Rica, as Klinsmann’s contingent thumped the minnows 4-0 to catapult themselves second in Group A.

That leaves team USA a crucial two points ahead of Los Ticos and Paraguay with one game to play for, plus a much healthier goal difference, meaning the Stars and Stripes are even-money favourites with Coral against La Albirroja.

Copa America Centenario Soccer Costa Rica Paraguay

A draw would do too, but if USA still have their sights on the summit they’ll need Colombia to lose and some more strikes in the bank, with odds of 23/10 for victory and over 2.5 goals from Klinsmann’s clan, as these two teams have just 14 goals in their fixture archives.

As the previous head-to-heads are split incredibly evenly with two wins, losses and draws apiece, a splitting of spoils is a worthy 9/4 wager. On a shaky streak of five without a win, Paraguay can be stubborn but look shorn of sparkle and so short at 5/2 for their much needed scalp.

Dangerman Dempsey a USA hero again

Clint Dempsey, of Tottenham and Fulham fame, reintroduced himself to any eager English audiences watching with the opening goal against Costa Rica and is 5/1 to fire in first again in Philadelphia.

Costa Rica US Soccer

Jermaine Jones, once on loan at Blackburn Rovers, also bagged and is an 11/2 anytime chance to do so again, with LA Galaxy’s Gyasi Zardes 2/1 to get in on the goal action.

Persistent Paraguay are also unlikely to go down without a fight, and will hope their only scorer in the competition Victor Ayala (5/1) so far can find the net again, with usually fairly lethal Dario Lezcano (7/4) yet to convert.

Colombia v Costa Rica

  • Copa America, Group A
  • Sunday, June 12th
  • Kick-off: 02:00 BST
  • NRG Stadium, Houston
  • Live on Premier Sports

Colombia can cement perfect pool record

So far so good for Jose Pekerman’s Colombia crew, as the South Americans already smoothly sailed into the next round. After two tournament triumphs on the trot, a third is odds-on 8/15 to occur. If customers fancy better value, the Coffee Growers are an intriguing 17/5 to win both halves.

Or you can back them to equal or better the USA with a superb 7/1 price available for Colombia to clock-up four or more goals.

Meanwhile, much-loved dark horses Costa Rica could crash out here due to their desperate goal difference, and with only one point chalked up on the board.

Copa America Centenario Soccer Costa Rica Paraguay

With the Coffee Growers already qualified for the next phase, Los Ticos are 5/1 for an unlikely three points, or 11/4 for just a consolatory one. There has never been a draw between this duo though, just a lopsided 9-2 winning record for the Colombians.

Rodriguez and co running the show

It’s tough not to go straight into Real Madrid’s James Rodriguez in the scorer market again, frankly because he’s been on target twice in two so far in North America.

Copa America Centenario Soccer Colombia Paraguay

The Colombia captain is 4/1 for the final say for the third time in a row, or even-money to make a difference anytime. While, fierce frontman Carlos Bacca finally converted last time out and is 7/2 to strike the opening blow to Costa Rica, while wideman Juan Cuadrado is 7/4 to celebrate a goal anytime with his Chelsea future still to be decided.

Los Ticos will have to throw everything they have at a superior on paper Colombia, but are still without a strike at this Copa, awaiting former Fulham forward Bryan Ruiz or Alvaro Saborio (both 11/4) to start the tally.

Ecuador v Haiti

  • Copa America, Group B
  • Sunday, June 12th
  • Kick-off: 23:30 BST
  • MetLife Stadium, East Rutherford
  • Live on Premier Sports

Los Amarillos to make great escape?

After stumbling to two draws, stuttering Ecuador are odds-on 2/15 favourites to make it third time lucky for victory. It could all come too little too late, however, with Los Amarillos trailing two points and a significant goal swing behind Brazil and Peru.

All the Ecuadorians can do is ignore what is going on in the subsequent kick-off and go for glory against Haiti, who were officially eliminated by a 7-1 Brazilian bashing.

Copa America Centenario Ecuador Peru Soccer

Les Grenadiers are 13/2 to rally for pride’s sake and pinch a point, though there has never been a draw between the teams only two wins apiece, and Los Amarillos surely have enough talent in their toes to see off hapless Haiti.

As their opponents have so far conceded eight in two games, punters can plump for Ecuador at an attractive 7/5 to clinch the win and score over 3.5 goals, or 11/10 to triumph in both halves.

Valencias must be vicious versus minnows

If comes down to it, Ecuador may need to outscore their pool rivals above them to progress, which is where the South American nation’s supposed stars must come in.

Ecuador Wcup Soccer

Viewers have seen very little so far from Premier League trio Enner Valencia (11/4 to open proceedings), Antonio Valencia (7/2 anytime) and Jefferson Montero (11/4), so it may be worth looking at less lauded wizards here, with Gremio goal threat Miller Bolanos 7/2 for the final say after closing scoring last time out, or 4/1 for a brace or better.

Brazil v Peru

  • Copa America, Group B
  • Monday, June 13th
  • Kick-off: 00:00 BST
  • Gillette Stadium, Foxborough
  • Live on Premier Sports

Samba stars require swashbuckling performance

After the disappointment of an opening draw, Brazil bounced back by battering Haiti, and are now 4/9 to sink Peru, with both teams still far from guaranteed a place in the next round.

The Samba Boys’ swashbuckling goal difference of six should see them safe and finish top of the pile to boot, but there is still work to be done against Peru with Ecuador only two behind and facing already ousted Haiti.

Brazil Peru WCup Soccer

Dunga’s bombastic Brazilians showed a little of that famous flare as they sank those same minnows 7-1, and with a winning record of 29 triumphs in 41 against the Peruvians are priced at 9/5 to notch three or more in their final group wrangle. A record of 88 goals in their previous dust-ups against the Incas shows Brazil know how to sharpen their knives in this fixture, and it may be needed.

Coutinho class counts again

If Peru sneak a draw at 6/1, and Ecuador clock up the goals in their game, there is still a chance of it all coming down to goal difference, Brazil would still be in a superb position. Yet, the giants of the game can’t rest on their laurels and must be lethal in Gillette Stadium.

Liverpool magician Philippe Coutinho hit the headlines with a hat-trick in the Haiti match-up, but faces greater opposition here with odds of 13/2 to fire first in Foxborough, or 10/1 to tuck away two or more again.

Copa America Centenario Soccer Brazil Haiti

If you don’t fancy Coutinho to convert after his masterclass, then fellow recent scorer and former Bayer Leverkusen forward Renato Augusto (11/4 anytime) could be your man, having dispatched past Peru in 2015. While, burgeoning talent Gabriel Barbosa is 6/5 to grab his second of the tournament.

Peru are not without options themselves, with last scorers Edison Flores and Christian Cueva 7/2 and 6/1 respectively to repeat their feats.

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Coral’s top tip: Colombia are a tempting 17/5 to win both halves.

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