Thursday’s CONCACAF Nations League betting tips: Previews, predictions and odds

31 May 2022 0 By Total Football News

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Panama vs Costa Rica

Keylor Navas

LEEDS, ENGLAND – JUNE 07: Keylor Navas of Costa Rica during the International friendly match between England and Costa Rica at Elland Road on June 7, 2018 in Leeds, England. (Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images)

The headline act from the opening night of the CONCACAF Nations League’s return comes from Estadio Olímpico Rommel Fernández Gutiérrez.

This game commences a huge fortnight for Costa Rica, culminating in an inter-confederation play-off against New Zealand.

Los Ticos are in red-hot form just now, taking 19 points from their final seven World Cup qualifiers, thereby snatching fourth place at Panama’s expense.

So, on 14 June, Luis Fernando Suárez’s team will take on New Zealand in Qatar with the winners going to the World Cup.

Before then, Costa Rica face a pair of Nations League games in preparation, welcoming Martinique to San José on Sunday.

Last time round, los Ticos topped their Nations League group before losing on penalties to Mexico in the semi-finals last summer.

So, will they kick off this campaign with a victory on the road?

Panama meanwhile made their World Cup debut in 2018, but won’t be in Qatar having, as mentioned, fallen short in qualifying, just below Costa Rica.

In this tournament, los Canaleros narrowly avoided relegation in 2019, only finishing above Bermuda on goal difference with just three points.

However, this group is wide open with these two the front runners to take top spot.

Costa Rica won their last meeting as recently as January and will fancy their chances of a repeat in this one.

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French Guinea vs Guatemala

Guatemala’s bid for back-to-back CONCACAF Nations League promotions commences at Stade Municipal Dr. Edmard Lama.

Due to a FIFA suspension, los Chapines were unable to take part in the one-off Nations League qualifying tournament in 2018/2019.

Thus, they were placed in League C, the bottom-tier, where they won all four matches, scoring 25 goals and conceding zero.

Having qualified for 13 of the last 15 Gold Cups they’ve entered, la Furia Azul are historically one of the strongest nations in the region.

Thus, Luis Fernando Tena’s team are favourites to win this group and move all the way up to League A.

French Guinea meanwhile are preparing for a second season in League B, symmetrically winning twice, drawing twice and losing twice during the first edition.

Les Yana Dòkòs made their Gold Cup debut in 2017, narrowly missing last year’s edition after a penalty shootout defeat to Trinidad & Tobago.

So, Thierry De Neef’s side are a solid outfit, but Guatemala are strong favourites to win in Cayenne.

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Belize vs Dominican Republic

Two teams, who narrowly avoided relegation last time round, kick off their new Nations League campaigns at FFB Stadium.

Belize are ranked 173 in the FIFA World Rankings and have only qualified for one Gold Cup, appearing at the 2013 edition.

In the Nations League, the Jaguars were almost relegated to League C in 2019, finishing just one point above St Kitts & Nevis who did drop down.

So, every points is important for David Pérez Asensio’s side who are favourites to finish bottom of this group.

Dominican Republic, similarly, also came third in their group two years ago, losing three of six games, only just ending up above Aruba.

Los Quisqueyanos have only won four of their last 12 competitive games, form that will need to improve during this competition.

This particular game at Belmopan could go either-way.

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Barbados vs Antigua and Barbuda

Thursday’s CONCACAF Nations League betting tips: Previews, predictions and odds

DENVER, CO – JUNE 06: The Trophy of Championship is displayed during the CONCACAF Nations League Championship Final between United States and Mexico at Empower Field At Mile High on June 6, 2021 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Omar Vega/Getty Images)

Two picturesque Caribbean islands meet at Daren Sammy Cricket Ground.

Of the two, Antigua and Barbuda are favourites, after they won three and lost three of their League B fixtures in 2019.

Overall, the Benna Boys have won seven of their last 13 competitive games, so will be confident of adding another victory here.

Barbados meanwhile won promotion to this level in 2019, topping their group above Cayman Islands, Saint Martin and U.S. Virgin Islands.

The Bajan Tridents were then solid in World Cup qualifying, amassing five points, although their four matches featured a measly six goals.

So, this one is unlikely to be high-scoring and is tough to call.

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Guadeloupe vs Cuba

After suffering Nations League relegation in 2019, Cuba are looking to bounce straight back.

Last time round, the Lions of the Caribbean lost all four matches in an admittedly very tough group featuring the U.S. and Canada.

Now, down at League B level, Pablo Elier Sánchez’s side will be far more competitive.

Cuba have qualified for four of the last six Gold Cups, but have only won two of their last 12 competitive internationals, losing the other ten.

Guadeloupe meanwhile made their Gold Cup return last summer, knocking out Bahamas and then Guatemala in the qualifiers.

The Gwada Boys gained promotion to this level in 2019, winning all four matches against Sint Maarten and Turks and Caicos Islands.

So, Guadeloupe will be confident of being competitive at this level, with this game at Stade René Serge Nabajoth a good early test.

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Anguilla vs Dominica

Down in League C, the Nations League’s bottom-tier, two minnows go head-to-head at Raymond E. Guishard Technical Centre.

Anguilla are the lowest-ranked side in the CONCACAF region, 210th in the FIFA World Rankings, with only San Marino below them.

Las year, they lost all four World Cup qualifiers, conceding 23 goals and scoring zero.

Overall, they’ve lost 11 of their last 12 matches, conceding a total of 59 goals, the exception being a 1-1 draw with Bahamas.

Thus, Dominica will very much fancy their chances of victory.

They were relegated to the Nations League’s bottom tier last time round, winning just one of six League B matches, losing the other five.

However, last year, Rajesh Latchoo’s team were competitive in World Cup qualifying, hammered Anguilla 3-0 in before a 1-1 draw with Barbados.

Thus, an away win looks very likely.

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