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With Luiz Felipe Scolari's hosts set to dominate in Group A, Al Hain-Cole takes a look at which side stand the best chance of joining them in the knockout stages

Host nation Brazil are the undisputed main attraction in Group A, where Croatia, Cameroon and Mexico lie in wait.

Luiz Felipe Scolari's men are hotly tipped to go all the way on home soil, generally around the 3/1 (4.00) to win the tournament, so they are unsurprising 1/4 (1.25) favourites with bet365 to finish top of the pile in the group phase and a slender 1/20 (1.05) just to qualify.

With Mexico and Croatia priced at 11/10 (2.10) and even money (2.00) respectively to reach the last 16, the fight for second place seems set for a two-horse race.

However, Niko Kovac's side are available at 7/1 (8.00) to pounce on any Brazilian slip-ups and grab top spot, with El Tricolor a shade behind at 8/1 (9.00).

At a relatively lengthy 9/2 (5.50) to reach the last 16, Cameroon appear to be likely strugglers in a tough group, where they heavy 25/1 (26.00) outsiders to finish in first place.

Realistically, Volker Finke's underdogs seem like a relatively safe bet at 8/11 (1.73) to end up rock bottom, having failed to win any of their last six games against non-African opposition.

In fact, odds of 5/4 (2.25) on the Indomitable Lions earning no more than a point in three games appear extremely tempting, while the 23/20 (2.15) price on Mexico gaining either three or four points also looks well worth backing.

Miguel Herrera's team should have too much for the Cameroonians, although they may struggle to gain more than one point from six against Brazil and Croatia.

Meanwhile, 6/5 (2.20) odds look like good value on the Selecao ending up with at least seven points on the board, leaving Croatia's clash against Mexico as the decider for who joins them in them knockout stages.

If their return of just two wins from 10 in the final round of qualifying is anything to go by, the North Americans appear the most likely to miss out, meaning that odds of 7/4 (2.75) on Vatreni finishing as runners-up behind the hosts are surely where the smart money lies.

BET
OF THE
DAY
BEST BET
VALUE BET
Cameroon to earn less than 2 points for a 1.5pt stake at 5/4 (2.25) with bet365
Brazil & Croatia to finish first and second for a 1pt stake at 7/4 (2.75) with bet365

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Al Hain-Cole is an experienced tipster and avid follower of European football. He specialises in accumulators and if you would like to read more from Al you can follow him on Twitter here.

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