Profit from Argentina and Brazil failure at Copa America

A slow start is affordable in the competition with very few losers

Brazil and Argentina’s group stage performances

The Copa America gets underway in the early hours of Saturday morning and the odd format of the group stage, which sees eight of the 12 participating nations qualify for the quarter-finals, should offer punters an early chance to make some money.

With the three group winners, runners-up and even two of the third-placed teams progressing, the standard setup of international tournaments whereby one mistake puts you in serious jeopardy does not apply.

Instead, it is almost advisable to get through with as little effort as possible to ensure optimum freshness for the more gruelling knockout rounds, so four-to-six points is a fine return for the three matches.

South America’s big two Argentina and Brazil, who are 2.04 and 3.4 respectively on Betfair to claim the trophy, have grown wise to this trend and, despite taking seven of the last nine titles, are rarely as dominant in the group stage.

Brazil have won the last two editions without topping their group on either occasion, while Argentina have also settled for second place on two of their last three entries.

In fact, and get ready to take a sharp intake of breath when you hear this statistic, in none of the 13 instalments that have taken place since the competition first adopted a group-to-knockout format in 1975, have Brazil and Argentina both finished top of their groups.

It would be rude not to try to exploit such a staggering trend, so why not lay hosts Argentina to win Group A at 1.24 and Brazil to triumph in Group B at 1.42. That method ensures that – provided you get your stakes right – you will profit so long as one falls short.

Picking a huge outsider to go all the way is tough because, besides the frontrunners, Uruguay are the only side to have been victorious away from their own country since 1953. If you want to go against the favourites, they therefore are the ones to back at 13.0.

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