The United States is back on the biggest stage in football after missing out four years ago in Russia when they take on Wales on Nov. 21 at Al Rayyan Stadium during the opening round of Group B matches.
Manager Gregg Berhalter will lead a talented USMNT side highlighted by Chelsea’s Christian Pulisic, along with Brenden Aaronson and Tyler Adams from Leeds United.
On the other hand, Wales is set to make its second-ever World Cup appearance and first since 1958. Forward Gareth Bale ended the 60-plus year drought for the Welsh side when his free-kick capped an emotional qualifying win over Ukraine in June.
Unlike the USA side, the Welsh team is very much a one-man band. As Bale goes, so does Wales. That said, if the Dragons are going to make some noise, they will need a strong effort from midfielders Daniel James and Brennan Johnson.
USA vs Wales Odds
- 3-Way Handicap: USA (+140) | Draw (+195) | Wales (+190)
- Draw No Bet: USA (-140) | Wales (+110)
- Over/Under Goals: Over 2.5 (+122) | Under 2.5 (-172)
- Both Teams To Score: Yes (-106) | No (-122)
USA vs Wales odds are current as of Sept. 21 on FanDuel Sportsbook unless otherwise specified.
Sportsbooks have this showdown between the USMNT and Wales at a virtual deadlock. There is little to no room between either team in the 3-way handicap, with a draw coming in at nearly identical odds.
The United States is listed as a slight favorite, which is far more noticeable in a Draw No Bet wager. However, it may be more beneficial to attack the Over/Under, which offers a better opportunity for profit.
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USA vs Wales Prediction
USA 2:1 Wales
This is an evenly-matched showdown that should be closely contested until the final whistle.
Similar to England, Wales is unlikely to score many goals during the World Cup. However, they also rely too heavily upon Bale to supply its offense, while the United States holds an advantage almost everywhere else on the pitch. In addition, Joe Allen (hamstring) may be limited during the match.
That said, I expect Wales to reach the back of the net against a USMNT side that may not be in top form playing as a unit during their opening game.
Welsh Manager Rob Page is known for having an organized defense, which will be essential for a Wales victory.
On the U.S. side, its fortunes may depend on the form of Pulisic, who has struggled early this season in the Premier League. Team USA is known for its stable defense, but if it is going to advance deep into the tournament, creating scoring opportunities will be critical.
USA striker Jesús Ferreira could end up being a difference maker and the United States side has the talent up front to overwhelm Wales, which should lead to a pair of goals.
This match should be tightly contested until the final whistle and be decided by one goal or end in a draw.
USA vs Wales Betting Tips
- Wales tends to play from behind, with over half of its recent goals coming in the final 15 minutes.
- The USMNT tend to feel out their opponents early but come on strong after the first 30 minutes, scoring almost 90% of its recent goals in the final 60 minutes.
- Team USA tends to spread the ball around, having six different goal scorers in its previous five matches. However, Ferreria has netted four on their last nine.
- Pulisic leads the USA with an average of 1.54 shots on goal per match over the last two seasons, while Haji Wright leads in goals per match (0.66).
- Johnson leads Wales with an average of 1.35 shots on goal per match over the last two seasons, while Aaron Ramsey leads in goals per match (0.50).
USA vs Wales Best Bets
Correct Score: USA Wins 2:1, 3:1, or 4:1 (+600) at FanDuel Sportsbook
WAGER: 1 Unit
The heat in Qatar is widely expected to slow down the tempo during the opening group matches.
However, with the likes of Pulisic, Aaronson, Bale, and James on the pitch, there is always a chance for fireworks.
As mentioned above, I predict the USMNT will win, 2:1. However, a straight wager on victory in a Draw No Bet scenario will only net you -140 odds.
Instead, invest in a Correct Score bet. You could even pair the suggested wager above with a USA victory of 1:0, 2:0, or 3:0 at +310 to cover more ground, both of which would still net a more significant profit than a straight win.