World Cup 2022: The USMNT is a nearly 5-to-1 underdog to beat England

The second round of the 2022 World Cup group stage games begin on Friday. Did you hear that the USMNT is playing?

Of course, you did. The United States is a significant underdog to England after the Three Lions demolished Iran to open their World Cup campaign. A loss likely dooms the United States' chances of advancing. A result is imperative. Can they get it?

Here are the odds for Friday's games courtesy of BetMGM.

Group A standings

1. Netherlands, 3 points

2. Ecuador, 3 points

3. Senegal, 0 points

4. Qatar, 0 points

Odds to win Group A

  • Netherlands (-500)

  • Ecuador (+333)

  • Senegal (+1600)

  • Qatar (+8000)

Odds to finish top 2 in Group A

  • Netherlands (-5000)

  • Ecuador to win (-250)

  • Senegal to win (+145)

  • Qatar to win (+1800)

Qatar vs. Senegal (over/under 2.5 goals)

8 a.m. ET Friday, FS1

  • Qatar (+500)

  • Senegal (-160)

  • Tie (+260)

It’s hard to have much confidence in Qatar after what we saw on Sunday. Ecuador dominated the match and thoroughly deserved the win. Senegal is already without Sadio Mane and looks set to be without midfielder Cheikhou Kouyate. He’s a big part of Senegal’s midfield. But even without Mane and Kouyate, Senegal should have enough to eliminate the Qataris from knockout round contention and set up a pivotal match with Ecuador on Tuesday.

Netherlands vs. Ecuador (2.5)

11 a.m. ET Friday, Fox

  • Netherlands to win (-125)

  • Ecuador to win (+350)

  • Tie (+260)

It took the Dutch over 80 minutes to score a goal against Senegal and then added a second for good measure. Given the way the first round of group matches played out, both of these teams could be content to play it out for a tie and stay tied for first and in control of their own paths to the knockout stage. We’ll go with the draw. But if you’re feeling bold, a draw and under parlay could be worth a risk.

Group B standings

1. England, 3 points

2. United States, 1 point

2. Wales, 1 point

4. Iran, 0 points

Odds to win Group B

  • England (-650)

  • United States (+700)

  • Wales (+850)

  • Iran (+12500)

Odds to finish top 2 in Group B

  • England (-5000)

  • United States (-125)

  • Wales (+120)

  • Iran (+550)

Wales vs. Iran (2.5)

5 a.m. ET Friday, FS1

  • Wales to win (+110)

  • Iran to win (+280)

  • Tie (+210)

This line seems to reflect a relative lack of confidence in Wales’ ability to break Iran down anything like England did. We’re fascinated to see if Kieffer Moore starts the game for Wales, and the Welsh will likely control possession in this one. What can they do to break down Iran? And what’s the best outcome for the U.S.? You can argue it’s a draw or it’s an Iran win. The under is the heavily favored side here at -200 and we’re inclined to go with it.

England vs. United States (2.5)

2 p.m. ET Friday, Fox

  • England to win (-175)

  • United States to win (+450)

  • Tie (+310)

Bet this game with your head, not your heart. England is a deserved favorite at -175 after its performance against Iran. If you want to bet the U.S., we recommend taking a combo bet of a U.S. win and a tie at +135. Keep in mind that a tie is a very good result for the USMNT, especially if Wales doesn’t beat Iran. As you can see from the odds, England is the safer bet here and would effectively end the United States’ chances of advancing. If you want to be optimistic, hedge with that combo bet rather than going with one result.

Players of the United States line up prior to during the Group B match between the United States and Wales at the 2022 FIFA World Cup at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, Nov. 21, 2022. (Photo by Zheng Huansong/Xinhua via Getty Images)
U.S. players line up before their Group B match against Wales at the 2022 FIFA World Cup at Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium in Al Rayyan, Qatar, Nov. 21, 2022. (Photo by Zheng Huansong/Xinhua via Getty Images)