I suppose the answer is it depends on how able or willing you are to watch them all. This World Cup is a condensed affair so we’re going to see four games a day for the next week or so and then pretty much straight into the knockouts thereafter.
With the help of my World Cup spreadsheet (check out a viewable version of it here), here are my predictions and things to look out for today.
Argentina v Saudi Arabia
There’ll be something very wrong if Lionel Messi and co. don’t win this one comfortably and having not lost since July 2019, they should ease to victory. A win and a clean sheet will be what they expect and there’s no reason to suggest that won’t happen – they’ve scored 3.8 goals per game across their last five fixtures while Saudi Arabia have scored just four times across their last ten.
Prediction: Argentina 4-0 Saudi Arabia
Look out for: Argentina to be leading at both half-time and full-time
Denmark v Tunisia
Denmark ought to be too strong for Tunisia, if their run to the Euro 2020 semi-finals is anything to go by and beating France 2-0 last time out is a nice confidence boost to take into their opener. Tunisia, meanwhile, needed two late goals to beat Iran in their last game, so aren’t in great form themselves.
Prediction: Denmark 1-0 Tunisia
Look out for: A result either way – Denmark haven’t drawn since June 2021!
Mexico v Poland
The hardest of the four games today to call and a draw could well be the most likely outcome. While Poland’s last four games all ended either 1-0 or 2-0, suggesting a low-scoring affair, Mexico’s last three games produced 12 goals with each of their last three second halves featuring exactly three goals.
Prediction: Mexico 1-1 Poland
Look out for: A goalless first half followed by more action after the break.
France v Australia
The reigning champions get their defence underway without Karim Benzema, but they ought to have enough quality in reserve to both beat Australia and make a run deep into this tournament. With Zinedine Zidane reportedly being lined up to replace Didier Deschamps after the World Cup, they’ve only won one of their last five games. Australia might be on a run of five straight wins but none of them came against sides ranked in the top 20 so they’ll threaten, but ultimately not enough to overcome France.
Prediction: France 3-1 Australia
Look out for: France scoring after the 50th minute – they’ve done so in three of their last four games.