Qatar are the controversial hosts of the 2022 World Cup and it was even more controversial that they were put in Pot 1 when it came to the recent draw. As a result, Group A looks to be the weakest, with Felix Sanchez tasked with steering the home country to the knockout stage although his task looks like a tough one.

While the Qatari team will benefit from home advantage against Ecuador before clashing with Senegal and Netherlands, there is a lack of quality and it’s reflected in the match betting odds. If you compare the latest World Cup betting odds, then you can get as big as 3/1 that they claim victory in this opener.

The South American side have a modest World Cup record although they did qualify for the 2014 World Cup and La Tri came through a difficult CONMEBOL group to finish fourth ahead of some quality teams. It was no mean feat to finish ahead of Peru, Colombia and Chile, even if most of the success came in Quito.

Enner Valencia remains the evergreen striker tasked with scoring the goals that are going to help his country go deeper than normal, with Carlos Gruezo and Angel Mena probably the pick of the midfield players although there aren’t many of the squad members who play their football in a competitive domestic division.

At the time of writing, Ecuador have failed to win any of their past five matches although there was a 1-1 draw against Brazil. Indeed, four of their past five games have ended in a 1-1 scoreline and that reflects that the team play a fairly pragmatic style of football.

Qatar are ranked 51 in the FIFA World Rankings, although they will want to put on a show in this opener and they managed to reach the FIFA Arab Cup semi-finals before a defeat against Algeria. They are going to be competitive in this tournament and could be capable of landing a positive result in this opener.

With Netherlands and Senegal also lying in wait, this is a game where both teams will want to avoid defeat and we’d expect Under 2.5 Goals to pay out and you could also have a wager on BTTS No.

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