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Thursday's World Cup Bet Builder tips: Ronaldo and Neymar to inspire Portugal and Brazil to wins
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Cameron Pope
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Fernando Santos has a talented Portugal squad to work with
Fernando Santos has a talented Portugal squad to work with

- Day five at the World Cup on Thursday features Portugal and Brazil
- Ronaldo to help Portugal start strongly against Ghana
- Brazil to outgun Serbia with Neymar to the fore

Our daily Bet Builder column continues with selections from Thursday's World Cup action, including wins in opening clashes for South American and European giants.

Portugal to lay down marker

Bet 1: Portugal to win

Portugal are known for their attacking prowess, with star names Cristiano Ronaldo, Bruno Fernandes, Bernardo Silva and Joao Felix the leading lights of Fernando Santos's glitzy squad, but it is in defence where their true strength has lain in recent matches.

Their last five wins have also brought them clean sheets and Ghana will be hard-pushed to break down a back-line including the likes of Joao Cancelo and Ruben Dias of Manchester City, Nuno Mendes and Danilo Pereira of Paris Saint-Germain, Manchester United's Diogo Dalot and Raphael Guerreiro of Borussia Dortmund.

Ghana managed wins over Switzerland and Nicaragua in tune-up matches but were also beaten 3-0 by Brazil, raising questions over how they will manage against elite opposition in Group H.

Bet 2: Cristiano Ronaldo to score anytime

Cristiano Ronaldo's exit from Manchester United was confirmed on Tuesday and the news may have come at an opportune time for Portugal.

The emblematic Ronaldo can now focus on doing what he has done more often than any other man in history: scoring for his national team.

The Portugal star's greatness is undeniable, but a goal in any of his side's group games will catapult him further into the realm of stardom. 

No man has ever scored at five separate World Cup finals tournaments meaning Ronaldo will be the first to reach that milestone if he finds the net in Qatar.

Bet 3: Alidu Seidu to receive a card

Ghana are expected to have their backs against the wall from the off and centre-half Alidu Seidu may have to throw himself into the action if his side are to have any hope of delaying Portugal's onslaught.

The Clermont defender has picked up four yellow cards already in Ligue 1 this season and was booked on his last start for the Black Stars.

Brazil keen to end World Cup drought

Bet 1: Brazil to win

Brazil are the most successful team in the history of the World Cup, but their current 20-year wait to lift the trophy is one of the Selecao's longest-ever runs.

They kick off their 2022 campaign on Thursday at 7pm GMT and should be firmly expected to enter the tournament with a win, having arrived in Qatar on a run of 15 games without defeat.

Four wins in warm-up friendlies, netting five goals against South Korea and Tunisia, as well as three against Ghana, stand them in good stead for their quest to seal an unprecedented sixth title.

Serbia have themselves managed six matches without defeat, but are yet to face an opponent of the South Americans' calibre on that streak.

Bet 2: Neymar to score anytime

Neymar is closing in on a couple of records for Brazil
Neymar is closing in on a couple of records for Brazil

The abundantly talented Neymar is closing in on both Brazil's all-time goalscoring and appearance records.

The latter will not be broken in Qatar, but the Paris Saint-Germain man needs to find the net just three times to overtake Pele atop the scoring charts and the opener against Serbia could be the match-up to at least bring him within touching distance of that accolade.

Six of his 75 Brazil goals have come at World Cup finals tournaments.

Bet 3: Nemanja Gudelj to receive a card

Serbia are likely to come up against a ferocious Brazilian attack and will have to adjust early on to the Selecao holding possession inside their half.

Sevilla's Nemanja Gudelj has picked up six cautions for his club already this season and saw yellow in Serbia's Nations League win over Sweden in June.

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Tags

PortugalGhanaBrazilSerbia
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