I followed the Socceroos around the world to 4 World Cup qualification playoffs and the finals in Russia. I paid for it all with crypto I won betting on the games! See the introductory post for details.

The bets

My expenses for the trip were 629 m฿ and I am currently 480 m฿ in profit.

I plan to continue martingaling double chance underdog/draw (betting that the favorite won’t win) for 50m฿ until I have 3 more wins which will take me to the target of 630 m฿.

I hope to complete this in matchday 2 because matchday 3 is the only stage of the tournament with simultaneous games, which does not suit progressive staking plans like the martingale.

During matchday 1 there were 7 games in which the favorite did not win.

Australia vs Denmark

I consider this a must win game for Australia. Every team in group C is capable of beating every other team in group C. France and Denmark could both finish the group with 6 points, or so could Peru. 4 points with a good goal difference will probably not be enough for Australia to get out of the group.

Denmark are a decent team and deserve to be favorites. Australia has not been scoring enough goals since the final group stage of Asian qualifying. Under Ange we created a lot of chances but failed to convert them. In the 1 game under Aussie Bert we did not even create enough chances.

However, we will have a more attacking line up and mentality in this game and we are in with a chance to win.

Video assistant referee

I believe in using technology to get decisions right. But only in matters of fact, not matters of opinion. Matters of fact that should be decidable by VAR include things like

  • Did the ball cross the goalline (or touchline)?
  • Was a player in an offside position?
  • Was a card given as a result of mistaken identity?
  • Did a thing happen before or after another thing?
  • Has a player received 2 yellow cards?

These are cases where referee’s errors should be corrected by VAR.

Matters of opinion, like most fouls including penalties, often cannot be definitively right or wrong so should not use VAR. There is no point stopping the flow of the game and changing the dynamics of football to have 2 opinions instead of 1.

Especially in the case of 50:50s, VAR’s opinion cannot be better than the on-field referee’s opinion. The rules say that VAR should not be used for 50:50s, only for “clear and obvious errors” but what is a 50:50 as opposed to a clear and obvious error, is itself a matter of opinion!

One problem with the current implementation of VAR for matters of opinion is that it is utilized inconsistently. Some penalties that were missed by the on-field referee have been given via VAR. Other penalties that were missed by the on-field referee have not been given by VAR.