USA vs Uruguay Prediction: Should be goals in do-or-die Kansas contest for hosts

 | Monday 1st July 2024, 10:49am

Monday 1st July 2024, 10:49am

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The United States of America head into their final Copa America Group C game against Uruguay on Tuesday (02:00, Premier Sports 1) knowing that a failure to win could see them crash out of a home tournament before the quarter-finals.

Read below for my USA vs Uruguay prediction and all the latest team news and match odds ahead of this contest at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City.

USA vs Uruguay Betting Tips

  • USA or draw & both teams to score @ 7/5
  • Bet Builder - Christian Pulisic 2+ shots, Chris Richards 1+ shots, USA over 4.5 corners, Uruguay over 1.5 offsides @ 11/2

Copa America Odds

State of play

The USA kicked off their 2024 Copa America campaign with a routine 2-0 victory over Bolivia courtesy of first-half strikes from Christian Pulisic and Folarin Balogun, but disaster struck in their second game against Panama, which they lost 2-1.

Timothy Weah was sent off in the 18th minute, and despite Balogun netting the opening goal four minutes later, the Stars and Stripes were up against it for the rest of the match. Cesar Blackman equalised for Panama in the 26th minute and while the USMNT held out bravely for as long as possible, the inevitable occurred in the 83rd minute as Jose Fajardo Nelson scored the winner.

The USA are still second in Group C, with the top two advancing to the quarter-finals, but they must match Panama's result against Bolivia on Tuesday - and ensure their superior goal difference stays intact - to be sure of their place in the knockouts.

There's no such jeopardy for Uruguay, who blitzed past Panama (3-1) and Bolivia (5-0) in their opening two contests, and it would take a pretty remarkable set of results to deny them a quarter-final berth, and top spot in Group C.

Team News

Weah's red card last time out means Gregg Berhalter must make at least one alteration to his USA starting XI. The Stars and Stripes don't really have a like-for-like replacement for the Juventus winger, so some tactical tinkering may be required on the head coach's part.

Brenden Aaronson is one option to come into the side, Haji Wright another. Berhalter could also call on Yunus Musah, who surprisingly remained rooted to the bench against Panama. Tyler Adams has looked off the pace in midfield, and Musah is a credible option to replace him.

Despite having seemingly clinched top spot in Group C, the suggestion is that Uruguay head coach Marcelo Bielsa will opt against wholesale changes on Tuesday, which could spell bad news for their opponents.

Darwin Nunez and Maximiliano Araujo lead the way in goals scored for La Celeste having each struck twice so far at Copa America, and the duo will be looking to add to their tally to catch the current Golden Boot leader Lautaro Martinez (four goals).

Federico Valverde, Ronald Araujo and Manuel Ugarte are other important elements of this side under Bielsa, who can call upon the services of Rodrigo Bentancur, Luis Suarez and Jose Maria Gimenez if he wishes to rotate.

USA vs Uruguay Odds

*Please click on the link above to be taken to the main USA vs Uruguay page on betfred.com (or app) for all the live betting prices on this match.

The USA are slight favourites at 7/5 to collect all three points on Tuesday, giving them an implied win probability of 41.7%, while Uruguay are 7/4, or a 36.4% chance, to go three for three in Group C.

The draw can be backed at 21/10, both teams to score at 4/5, and over 2.5 total goals at 11/10.

USA or draw & both teams to score @ 7/5

The USA are favourites for Tuesday, not because they are a better team than Uruguay, but because they probably have to win to ensure progress to the knockouts, while La Celeste can afford to lose and still top the group, as long as they are not thrashed.

I do think the tournament hosts can avoid defeat on Tuesday and give themselves a chance of sneaking into the quarter-finals, but if Bielsa does indeed name a strong starting XI, I'm not willing to back them all the way for a win.

Nunez and M. Araujo have been causing chaos in attack for Uruguay, and they could exploit a vulnerable USMNT defence that shipped five to Colombia in an international friendly last month, which is why adding both teams to score makes a lot of sense.

The USA need to score if Panama beat Bolivia, which feels likely, and they will be leaving no stone unturned to ensure they find the back of the net.

Uruguay have been impressive so far but they did concede late on to Panama in their group opener, so they are not infallible, and with Balogun having scored in each of his two matches, the USA have a striker in form themselves.

USA or draw & both teams to score at 7-5

Bet Builder - Christian Pulisic 2+ shots, Chris Richards 1+ shots, USA over 4.5 corners, Uruguay over 1.5 offsides @ 11/2

Weah's red card against Panama severely hamstrung the USA's attempts to reach their opponent's final third last Thursday, which resulted in a paltry six attempts at goal, none of which came from Pulisic.

But 'Captain America' was a busy man in his country's opening game against Bolivia, scoring in the third minute and registering a further three shots, and he should be relishing his talisman tag heading into Tuesday's showdown fixture.

Pulisic averaged 2.2 shots per game at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar and 1.8 per game in Serie A for AC Milan last season, so two shots against Uruguay should be achievable, assuming the USA don't go into an early lead and bunker in.

Alongside Pulisic, I'm backing Crystal Palace defender Chris Richards to record a shot, having been responsible for a third (2/6) of the USA's attempts against Panama.

I'm expecting the host nation to go all out for the win, particularly in the latter stages, which means they could force a lot of corners and set-piece situations, where Richards can be handy.

The USA didn't win a corner against Panama with Weah's dismissal hitting them hard, but they earned seven against Bolivia, while Uruguay conceded three to each of Bolivia and Panama.

Rounding off this bet builder is over 1.5 offsides for Uruguay, who have been flagged offside six times so far this tournament, three in each game. Nunez has been responsible for a third (2/6) of them, and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him make another darting run or two too early on Tuesday.

The USA have caught their opponents offside three times so far - Bolivia once and Panama twice.

Bet builder in USA vs Uruguay at 11-2

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