Despite being denied a win by a late goal in their Group opener, Spain showed more than enough to prove they are genuine contenders to lift the World Cup.
The 2010 winners were twice behind against Portugal last week, before conceding an equaliser to Cristiano Ronaldo, two minutes from time, to eventually draw 3-3 with their Iberian rivals.
The Spanish trio of Andreas Iniesta, David Silva and Isco shone in Sochi and, coupled with the goal threat of Diego Costa, they look the most dangerous team in the competition to date.
Up next for Spain is a clash with Iran on Wednesday (Match Betting – Iran 20/1, Draw 6/1, Spain 4/23) and a win looks inevitable.
Even though Iran snatched a win over Morocco in their opening game, they will struggle to keep Spain at bay and over 2.5 goals at 11/2 looks like good value.
Portugal (20/31 in the match betting), meanwhile, are preparing to face Morocco on the same day and they should make it four points from two games.
But they are far too heavily reliant on Ronaldo and I’m not yet tempted by the 20/1 on offer for them to be crown world champions on July 15.
Another World Cup contender in action on Wednesday are Uruguay, who will look to make it two wins out of two in Group A when they face Saudi Arabia (Match Betting – Uruguay 4/25, Draw 13/2, Saudi Arabia 19/1).
Even though they weren’t at their best in a 1-0 success over Egypt, the South Americans (2/3 to win Group A) are likely to set up a last-16 tie against either Spain or Portugal.
Would Uruguay beat Spain? Probably not. Would Uruguay beat Portugal? Yes!
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