Chile v Australia
Sunday June 25, 16:00
Live on ITV 4
South American champions Chile have won the last two Copa America titles, and that tournament experience has shown through so far in Russia. Juan Antonio Pizzi's men saw off Cameroon 2-0, and held the world champions Germany to a 1-1 draw. If anything, Chile can be a bit disappointed with that result, as they led Germany early on, and were much the better side in the opening exchanges.
Chile know a big win against Australia should be enough to secure top spot in the group, which would make things much easier from a logistical standpoint. Gary Medel is the only fitness doubt, and Pizzi is expected to field a strong side.
Australia have used a more technical, attractive style at this tournament, as coach Ante Postecoglou tries to move the Socceroos away from their traditionally physical philosophy. While this is a laudable project, it is very much a work in progress, and Australia have looked very vulnerable in defence. They were beaten 3-2 by Germany, and were lucky to escape with a point from a 1-1 draw against Cameroon.
That attacking style is unlikely to change against Chile, especially given the fact Australia must win to have any chance of progress to the semi-finals. That open approach is likely to suit Chile down to the ground, as they have players like Alexis Sanchez and Eduardo Vargas who can do huge damage on the break.
I think there's a distinct gulf in class here, and so I'm backing Chile to win comfortably.
Back Chile -1.5 on the Asian Handicap at [2.06]