Americans Seem Confident the US Can Win World Cup. But Brazil Is Favorite.

There is no question that over the past 15 years the US men’s national soccer team has made tremendous strides, culminating with a place in the quarterfinal of the 2002 World Cup and a lofty top ten FIFA ranking.

However, few outside of the US will argue that the Americans remain at the lower end of the global soccer totem pole. That has not stopped American fans from wagering on the boys in blue to win their first ever World Cup in Germany this summer.

Since opened betting on the event last November, 19.3 per cent of total wagers have been placed on the US to capture the trophy.

The only team more heavily bet on is favorite Brazil, with 23.4 per cent of total bets placed on them to capture their unprecedented sixth World Cup. The rest of the field, in bettors’ minds, is no where to be found with the next closest team, hosts Germany, capturing just 9.3 per cent of the bets.

"I don’t know if the US fans are just hoping for a huge payout or if they really think the Americans have a chance, but the betting volume proves one thing – soccer has obviously become a very popular sport in this country and one that Americans are very passionate about," said Alex Czajkowski from

"The World Cup is the most watched event in the world and everybody bets on the outcome."

The US opened as a 90-1 underdog to win the 2006 World Cup but now sits at 35-1, the 11th best odds in the field. The traditional powerhouses still line the top of the odds chart with Brazil at 3-1 followed by Argentina (13-2), England (7-1), Germany (8-1), Holland (9-1), Italy (9-1) and France (10-1).

Bettors also believe the US will win its first round group – one they share with Italy, the Czech Republic and Ghana. An overwhelming 83.5 per cent of bettors have backed the US. Perhaps just as surprising, the Czech Republic has received more backing (9.4 per cent) than Italy (5.6 per cent). Only 1.5 per cent of bettors pick Ghana to win the group.

The US will be appearing in its fifth straight World Cup. They have historically performed poorly when the event has been held on European soil, bowing out in the opening group stage in Italy in 1990 and in France in 1998.

In both those tournaments the Americans lost all three games of the group stage, including a famous 5-1 drubbing by Czechoslovakia in 1990 and a politically charged 2-1 loss to Iran in 1998.

They reached the second round when the event was played in the United States in 1994, losing to eventual champions Brazil, and surprised many when they reached the quarterfinal in Japan and South Korea in 2002, a feat that included a shocking 2-0 upset over arch-rivals Mexico in the second round.

Who will win the 2006 World Cup?

Team                    Odds        Percentage of Total Wagers Received
Brazil                   3-1                     23.4%
Argentina               13-2                      4.3%
England                  7-1                      8.2%
Germany                  8-1                      9.3%
Holland                  8-1                      6.5%
Italy                    9-1                      5.4%
France                  10-1                      1.0%
Spain                   16-1                      2.3%
Portugal                20-1                      3.3%
Czech Republic          25-1                      2.7%
USA                     35-1                     19.3%
Sweden                  40-1                      0.9%
Mexico                  50-1                      5.5%
Ukraine                 50-1                      0.3%
Serbia & Montenegro     60-1                      0.1%
Croatia                 65-1                      0.9%
Ivory Coast             80-1                      0.2%
Poland                  80-1                      0.2%
Paraguay                90-1                      0.1%
Switzerland            100-1                      0.2%
Japan                  150-1                      0.1%
Australia              200-1                      0.8%
Ecuador                200-1                      0.5%
Angola                 250-1                      0.1%
Ghana                  250-1                      0.4%
South Korea            250-1                      2.8%
Togo                   300-1                      0.0%
Tunisia                350-1                      0.1%
Costa Rica             500-1                      0.5%
Iran                   500-1                      0.2%
Saudi Arabia           750-1                      0.1%
Trinidad & Tobago    1,000-1                      0.5% presents itself as "the largest sportsbook and casino on the planet, where millions of adult Americans bet on sports, play poker and enjoy blackjack and other casino games online in a regulated and licensed jurisdiction."

Named the "Best US Sports Book" by the industry’s top magazine, eGaming Review, has been leading the online gaming industry since 1996. is the flagship brand for Sportingbet PLC, (LSE: SBT), the world’s leading publicly traded online gaming company. Sportingbet PLC, headquartered in London, England, has been voted number one in the industry for two years in a row by the authoritative eGaming Review Power 50 Survey.



  • Show Comments (5)

  • Guest

    Too much talk
    I don’t know why you guys are spending all this blah on stats…history has shown WE BRAZILIANS have what it takes and we will win this world cup. Purely simple. No blahs, just skillful feet at the field!

  • Guest

    that last url should’ve been…

  • Guest

    Wow, I tell ya, whoever wrote this article certainly never did any research.

    First of all let me say that I’m in this field, I own an internet sports forum among other interests that involve sports wagering. I’m a professional handicapper and you could say I’m an expert in this field…sports wagering, in particular internet sports wagering.

    Firstly,, who was used as the reference for this article, is little more than a sham book(casino), the ratings that have been posted here are by rating services where these ratings are actually paid for, or are actually affiliates of the very book itself.

    A true and honest sportsbook rating internet site is The Sportsbook Review, and their reviews, problems that gamblers have had, etc with can be found here.

    The claims that they are the US’s largest sportsbook, first of all, is laughable, secondly, internet gambling is illegal in the U.S., so naturally they’re not located there, although the majority of their customers are more than likely americans.

    Sportingbet PLC, the parent company, has NUMEROUS casinos and online sportsbooks, and the best of them receive a B- grade by reputable, independant, and honest review companies. is one of Sportingbet PLC’s piece of shit books….here is a recent complaint.

    “25/4/2006 23:39:00
    SBR Bill Dozer reports: Player waiting one month for $3,150 withdrawal from SPORTSBOOK.COM(SBR rating D+). SBR to inquire about bankwire which was validated by managment on March 15th.

    Player: “Dear Sirs, I have been experiencing some severe problems with the online sportsbook SPORTSBOOK.COM. As you may see from my attached correspondence, I bet on the 2006 Oscars and won $3,000.00 on Best Picture. I contacted them and asked for withdrawal, filling out their online form for bank transfer.
    However, since then, I have not received the money. My account with them shows no money on it, and they keep not responding to my various e-mails. I am desperate! Is there anything I can do? Is there anyhow you could help me with? Please be kind enough to advise! I would be most grateful if you could do anything to help me!!! Thank you so much in advance.”

    There are MANY other stories such as this, and of actually confiscating monies with little or no good reason.

    As far as why so many bets on the U.S., well the majority of their players are obviously american, and at 35-1 odds its worth 10-100 bucks just to have something to watch. This doesn’t mean anything, especially that americans “seem confident the US can win the world cup”.

    What shameless promotion of a piece of shit book, you’ve had your warning if anyone intends on placing a wager somewhere.

    They’re are good reputable internet sportsbooks out there, who I have no direct affiliation with. My sportsforums and other entities are “players advocates”.

    These repuatable “outs” include, (the best in my opinion)

  • Guest

    No matter how much money a country has, and I repeatedly hear how many problems the U.S. has with poverty on this site, in athletics one must have determination, dedication, discipline, and ability. Those are things that money just don’t buy my friend.

    The U.S. wins more overall medals in both olympics combined for many decades now. And I’ll let you in on something, IF soccer was americas most popular sport…its currently 5th(FIFTH), the U.S. would beat brazil like red-headed step-children year in and year out….now you brazilians can go ahead and laugh at that, but its a fact.

    BTW, brazil has had more wagers placed on them than the U.S., BUT, brazil is a 3-1 dog….the U.S. is a 35-1 dog!!! Quite a difference don’t ya think?

    And those stats aren’t showing the amount of money bet, they’re showing the number of bets, so if someone lays 10 bucks on the U.S., that’s a wager, and someone taking a long-shot to come through.

    And, take it from someone that knows sportsbetting….brazil won’t win the world cup this year.

  • Guest

    shows ignorance
    Let’s all have a laugh at the Yankee ignorance again. Their thinking:” We can win the summer Olympic medal count, we have more money to spend on development than you and we are the best.”
    A bookmaker’s dream: Stupid people with lots of money to make stupid bets.

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