One of the most eagerly anticipated group-stage games takes place in Salvador as the two teams who met in the World Cup final in Johannesburg four years ago face off again
That may well be down to the percieved weakness of teams from outside South America when playing on the continent, a tricky group draw and a so-called fading of the golden generation which has seen Spain establish themselves as the team to beat in world football.
In La Roja's first group game they will square off against Netherlands, the team whom they beat in extra time back in 2010 to secure their first World Cup trophy, and Paddy Power are offering new customers the choice of two great enhanced prices.
Spain are available at 17/20 (1.85) to collect three points but new customers can back the defending champions at 7/2 (4.5) or a sizeable 12/1 (13.0) on Oranje inflict an opening game defeat upon Spain for the second time in as many World Cups.
It was Switzerland that shocked the eventual champions on June 16, 2010, in Durban courtesy of a Gelson Fernandes winner and Louis van Gaal will hope that his side, who are rated generally as a 9/2 (5.5) chance, can upset the odds and punters who take up Paddy Power on their offer of 12/1 (13.0) about the beaten finalists from the last World Cup will be willing them on.
There is an interesting tactical decision for Vicente del Bosque in the attacking department. The injury of Diego Costa has cast doubts over the Brazilian-born frontman's place in the starting XI for this game and, with Fernando Torres showing very little for Chelsea over the past few months, it could be that Del Bosque deploys new Blues star Cesc Fabregas in a more forward role.
It's not just new cusomters whom Paddy Power are offering to reward though, the Irish bookmaker will refund losing bets on the first/last goalscorer, correct score and scorecast bets if the match finishes 0-0.
That outcome looks a distinct probability given the nature of Group B, which also sees a talented Chile side join Spain and Netherlands in competing for the two knockout-stage places.
|World Cup - Spain v Netherlands
|New Paddy Power customers can back Spain at 7/2 (4.5) OR Netherlands at 12/1 (13.0) with Paddy Power|
Jim Knight is Chief Betting Editor at Goal.com and has been tipping football games since he was old enough to place a bet. He is a Leicester City fan, writer and member of the We Are Going Up Podcast