Uruguay hosts Argentina as underdog on World Cup qualifying odds

One of South America’s fiercest soccer rivalries will be rekindled Thursday when Uruguay plays host to Argentina as a +225 underdog in a crucial CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying contest.

With a 7-2-5 record, Uruguay is knotted with Chile in third place on the CONMEBOL World Cup qualification table, one point up on Argentina. But La Celeste has struggled of late, posting five straight losses ahead of Thursday’s match at Estadio Centenario in Montevideo.

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Uruguay’s recent slide includes qualifying losses to Chile, Brazil, and Peru. The squad has also struggled against their River Plate rivals, dropping three of four, including a 1-0 loss as a +425 underdog in a World Cup qualifier last September, but is 3-1-1 in its past five against Argentina on home turf.

A +120 favorite on Thursday, Argentina sits below the line on the table following a 2-0 loss to Bolivia as +122 road chalk back in March, but responded with a 1-0 victory over Brazil and a lopsided 6-0 win over Singapore in a pair of June friendlies.

Also on Thursday, Brazil tries to pad its lead atop the CONMEBOL World Cup qualification table as it takes on Ecuador as a -360 favorite. With eight straight qualifying wins, the Brazilians hold a nine-point lead over second-place Colombia, and have already clinched a berth in the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

With just one victory in its past five World Cup qualifiers, Ecuador is in a must-win situation as it takes on Brazil as a heavy +1100 underdog. La Tricolor trail fifth-place Argentina by two points, and are winless in eight straight meetings with Brazil, including a 3-0 loss in qualification action last September.

Second-place Colombia will be looking to extend its current win streak to three matches when it battles last-place Venezuela as -155 road chalk, and Chile battles Paraguay as -215 chalk, while Peru hosts Bolivia as a -265 favorite.

Colombia produced clean sheet wins over Bolivia and Ecuador in its past two qualifying matches. Los Cafeteros are just 1-1-2 in their past four visits to Venezuela, which is pegged at a distant +385 on the game lines after going winless in five straight outings.

Chile has turned in mixed results in recent qualifying contests, going 3-1-2 over its past six, including a 1-0 loss to Germany as a +200 underdog in the Confederations Cup final. However, La Roja faces a Paraguayan squad that has lost six of seven across all competitions while being held off the scoresheet on four occasions, and enters Thursday’s matchup as a distant +650 underdog.