It seems that the fact that all three World Cups held outside of Europe and South America have been won by Brazil hasn’t been lost on World Cup punters who have been backing Dunga’s men to be successful in the first tournament to be held in Africa.
Brazil are the only nation to have won a World Cup outside of their own continent and they have managed that in Sweden in 1958, the USA in 1994 and in South Korea and Japan in 2002. That marks them down as possibly the most adaptable team in the world and the Brazil World Cup odds make them as close to being joint-favourites as possible without actually being joint favourites. There is still time for them to start the World Cup as favourites.
The current Spain World Cup odds make the European champions the narrow favourites but a slightly disappointing build-up has seen punters begin to look elsewhere. And there is also the fact that no European team has ever won the World Cup outside of the continent. If this World Cup was in Europe, Spain would probably win it in a canter.
So that possibly leaves the African sides. The bookies make Ivory Coast the best of them, but they have both Brazil and Portugal in their group and, if they do qualify as runners-up from their group, they are likely to face Spain in the second round. This is not the easiest run, so of all the African teams it is hosts South Africa who might have the best chance to impress.
They have some top players and home advantage, and should qualify from their group at the very least.