Why Uruguay look a great bet to win Group A at London 2012

With one of the most talented squads in the tournament, Phil Kitromilides argues that the South Americans are a great selection to top Team GB's bracker
It is hardly surprising to find Uruguay as firm favourites to win Group A given their ranking as the third best team is the world, their status as current champions of South America and the abundance of absurdly talented players in their squad.

We can perhaps discount the Fifa ranking as a credible barometer of strength given England's own ludicrous official position as the fourth best team on the planet, but the fascinating footballing enigma that is Uruguay continues to enthrall and entice while all the while prompting the question; how can a country of three million people consistently produce so many world class players?

Oscar Tabarez's side are priced at evens (2.00) with William Hill to win what is essentially a weak group and that looks like being one of the bets of the year.

With the combined attacking talents of Luis Suarez, Edinson Cavani, Abel Hernandez, and Gaston Ramirez, La Celeste Olimpica have more offensive quality than the other three teams in the group put together.

Team GB's 2-0 defeat by Brazil showed the gulf in technical ability between Stuart Pearce's men and the most gifted sides in South America.

Patriotic punters can take Great Britain at 6/5 (2.20) to win the group, but it looks a long shot given the strength of the Uruguayan squad.

The other two teams in the group are Senegal and the United Arab Emirates, who available at 7/4 (2.75) and 9/2 (5.50) respectively to qualify.

There could be some value to be had by predicting the top two teams in the group and William Hill offers odds of 15/8 (2.87) that Uruguay will top the bracket ahead of Team GB, and if things go according to the form book, that could prove to be a shrewd investment.

A less patriotic bet but still one potentially with some merit if a raw Senegal side gel at the tournament, is to back Uruguay to finish top ahead of the west Africans at 13/2 (7.50).

Uruguay to win the group at evens (2.00) with William Hill
Uruguay top/Senegal second at 13/2 (7.50) with William Hill

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Phil Kitromilides is a sports broadcaster working on radio and TV in London and Madrid. You can also follow Phil on Twitter.