Football

Qatar vs Ecuador: Predictions, tips & betting odds

Goal.com

The hosts kick off Qatar 2022 against the side from South America, but in their first ever World Cup match Felix Sanchez’s team should struggle

The first game of Qatar 2022 takes places on Sunday afternoon as the hosts of this controversial World Cup face Ecuador in the opening match of Group A.

The home side are clear outsiders to claim a victory against the side who finished fourth in the CONMEBOL qualifying tournament.

Qatar vs Ecuador latest odds

Since the World Cup hosts began playing in the opening match of the competition in 2006, the home side have never lost although that record could be tested at the Al Bayt stadium.

Qatar are outsiders with bet365 offering them at 12/5 (3.40) while the draw can be backed at 11/5 (3.20).

Ecuador meanwhile are priced at 5/4 (2.25) and the South Americans will fancy their chances of spoiling the Qatari party.

Qatar vs Ecuador first goal scorer odds

Only Brazil scored more goals than Ecuador in the South American World Cup qualifying competition and top scorer for La Tri was Michael Estrada.

The striker who plays for Mexican side Cruz Azul is priced at 13/2 (7.50) to open the scoring, while former West Ham forward Enner Valencia is the shortest priced player to break the deadlock at 9/2 (5.50).

For the hosts, Almoez Ali is available at 7/1 (8.00), while Akram Afif can be backed at 17/2 (9.50).

Qatar vs Ecuador preview

Gustavo Alfaro’s side showed themselves to be tough to beat in qualifying for Qatar 2022, and in preparation for the tournament they have been rock-solid defensively.

Ecuador have kept six consecutive clean sheets in the six friendly matches they have played in the run-up to the World Cup and are likely to keep things tight at the back once more.

Qatar remain an unknown quantity having played little competitive football recently, although their third place showing at last summer’s Arab Cup will give them confidence of being competitive.

Nevertheless, the quality of opponent they are likely to face in Group A is set to be considerably greater and there is little to make us think that the hosts can claim a win in their first ever World Cup match.

Qatar vs Ecuador tips and predictions

Backing Ecuador to keep a clean sheet should appeal and they are offered a healthy looking 12/5 (3.40) to win to nil.

Odds correct at the time of writing. Please gamble responsibly.

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