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Lionel Messi Atop World Cup Golden Ball Odds

2018 World Cup Golden Ball Odds: Lionel Messi to Win.

Lionel Messi will be aiming to become the first player ever to garner Golden Ball honors at consecutive editions of the FIFA World Cup when he takes the field next weekend in Argentina’s group stage-opening clash with Iceland as a +800 favorite on the odds to win the 2018 Golden Ball.

Messi played a key role in lifting Argentina into its 12th straight berth at the World Cup, potting seven goals in 10 appearances for the national side during CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying, and looked ready to compete at Russia 2018 while burying three goals in Argentina’s win as massive -2500 chalk in a pre-tournament friendly with Haiti on May 29.

The 30-year-old superstar also scored 34 times in 36 appearances while leading FC Barcelona to their fourth La Liga title in six years, and found the back of the net on four occasions, and added an assist, while powering the Argentines to a World Cup final appearance in 2014.

Messi is closely trailed on the World Cup Golden Ball odds by Brazil’s Neymar at +900, followed by Portuguese captain Cristiano Ronaldo at +1400, while Belgium’s Kevin de Bruyne sits as a +1600 World Cup Golden Ball prop bet.

Neymar showed no ill effects of a foot injury suffered in late February when he returned to action with Brazil’s national side last weekend. The 26-year-old quickly scored the game winner in Brazil’s 2-0 win over Croatia in friendly action after taking the pitch as a substitute at the start of the second half.

Neymar also tallied six goals in 14 CONMEBOL World Cup qualifying matches with the Canarinho, and currently sits alongside Messi as a +900 co-favorite to finish as the tournament’s top goalscorer on the 2018 World Cup futures odds.


Ronaldo Looking to Add World Cup Title to Resume

Ronaldo will be aiming to add a World Cup title to a growing list of club honors he has enjoyed in recent years. The 33-year-old attacker scored an impressive 15 goals in 13 matches this season while leading Real Madrid to a third straight UEFA Champions League title, and also hoped to take Portugal to the next level after leading them to victory at Euro 2016.

But after getting grouped with European powerhouse Spain and an underrated squad from Morocco in the World Cup draw, Portugal faces long +2800 odds to claim its first ever World Cup title.

De Bruyne tallied just one marker during Belgium’s disappointing run to the quarter-finals at Brazil 2014. But the 26-year-old played a key role in Manchester City’s ascension to the top of the Premier League table this season, and is expected to play a leadership role with Les Diables Rouges, who sport short +1200 odds to claim their first World Cup crown.

Further down the odds for the World Cup Golden Ball, France’s Antoine Griezmann sits alone at +1800, while a trio of players are deadlocked at +2000, including Gabriel Jesus of Brazil, Belgium veteran Eden Hazard, and Spanish midfielder Isco.

A host of veterans occupy the middle of the pack. Spain’s David Silva is pegged at +2200, followed by the top goalscorer at the 2010 World Cup, Thomas Muller of Germany, who joins France’s Paul Pogba and Spaniard Andres Iniesta at +2500.


*Odds as of June 6, 2018


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