Bookmakers predicts Germany v Brazil World Cup showdown
Joint-favourites should avoid date until final
The World Cup's opening match is not going to whet the appetite for many as hosts Russia kick off the tournament against Saudi Arabia in Moscow on June 14, but things should improve before the final in the same Luzhniki Stadium on July 15.
If, as the bookmakers expect, Brazil and Germany win their respective groups the joint-favourites will avoid each other until the final.
Germany's path to the final is potentially blocked by Switzerland, England and Spain, while Brazil could take on Poland, Belgium and France assuming the betting market is a reliable guide.
Argentina are tipped to suffer elimination at the quarter-final stage at the hands of Spain but bet365 still make Lionel Messi 9-1 favourite to finish the tournament as the top goalscorer.
Former Barcelona teammate Neymar of Brazil comes next in the Golden Boot list at 10-1 from 12-1 shots Cristiano Ronaldo (Portugal) and Antoine Griezmann (France).
England's Harry Kane is one of four forwards available at 16-1, alongside Gabriel Jesus of Brazil, Germany's Timo Werner and Belgium's Romelu Lukaku.
How the market sees the World Cup - last 16: Uruguay v Portugal, France v Croatia, Brazil v Sweden, Belgium v Poland, Spain v Russia, Argentina v Denmark, Germany v Switzerland, Colombia v England.
Quarter-finals: Portugal v France, Brazil v Belgium, Spain v Argentina, Germany v England.
Semi-finals: France v Brazil, Spain v Germany.
Final: Brazil v Germany.
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