It’s been 36 long years since Peru last appeared at a World Cup, and we’re expecting plenty of fireworks from this young and talented South American side. Peru stumbled through their World Cup qualifiers, and although they are unlikely to be the bookie’s favourites to win the tournament, they have played well in recent friendlies and could cause a few upsets.
But does Peru have what it takes to get out of a tricky Group C? Read our in-depth guide to Peru to see if their attractive style of play can help them make some big news in the 2018 World Cup.
Top 3 World Cup Bookies
Peru prediction: How well will they do?
Peru have already proved many bookmakers wrong simply by qualifying for the 2018 World Cup. Whilst many punters were expecting to see the likes of Chile, Paraguay or even Ecuador in the finals, Peru managed to get a little luck to clinch their place in Group C.
However, this is where the problems might begin as Group C is made up of formidable teams such as France, Denmark and Australia. Peru’s first game takes place against Denmark in Saransk on 16 June, and it will give much of the world their first glimpse of a radically improved Peru team. If Peru’s occasionally brittle defence can keep out the impressive goalscoring skills of Danish striker, Christian Eriksen, then we can hope that creative players such as Christian Cueva might be able to cause a shock against the Denmark team.
Peru’s next match takes place against France in Yekaterinburg on 21 June. This will be a very difficult game for Peru as France have been displaying some seriously improved form recently and could be a good bet for picking up the 2018 World Cup trophy. Not only does France have a very strong midfield, but with natural goalscorers like Antoine Griezmann in their ranks, it might be a case of damage limitation for the young Peruvian side.
So it falls to Peru’s last Group C game against Australia to give themselves a good chance of somehow making the knock-out rounds. Australia only just scraped through their qualifiers, and with a sudden change in management, they are looking much more vulnerable than normal. So we can expect Australia’s weaknesses to be taken advantage of by Peru who will be keen to show off their great short passing game and get the ball to talented forwards like Jefferson Farfán and Paolo Guerrero.
Most punters will probably be backing European teams like France and Denmark to emerge from Group C. However, we think that Peru could be a good outside bet if they manage to cause an upset for Denmark. At the moment, Ladbrokes have Peru at 5/2 to win their game against Denmark, and as little in known about Peru on a global stage, it could be good to take advantage of these odds.
Journey to the World Cup — Who did Peru beat to qualify?
Peru certainly didn’t make it easy for themselves in their World Cup qualifiers. But thanks to some great performances and a little bit of luck, they managed to reach fifth place in the tough CONMEBOL qualification group behind Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina and Colombia.
With an opening 2-0 loss against Colombia, a 3-0 demolition by Brazil, and an unlucky 3-4 defeat by Chile, it initially looked like Peru would once again fail to qualify for the World Cup. However, thanks to a technicality overturning a Bolivia win in their favour, and an incredible piece of luck in their final game against Colombia, Peru somehow earned themselves fifth place and a play-off game against New Zealand.
Whilst their first play-off was a tense 0-0 draw in New Zealand, Peru’s home game was won 2-0 and the team booked themselves their first World Cup appearance since 1982. And with some impressive performances in recent friendlies including a 2-0 win against Croatia and a 3-1 victory against Iceland, we are looking forward to seeing how Peru get on in Russia this summer.
Best players for Peru: Who should you be betting on?
The Peruvian team is packed full of young and exciting players who are set to make a big impression this summer. Whilst many of Peru’s stars play in the Mexican football league, we are sure that the 2018 World Cup will make them the target of many top European clubs. From their great goalkeeper, Pedro Gallese, to their strong midfielder, Yoshimar Yotún, there’s plenty of talent in the Peruvian squad.
Sao Paolo’s Christian Cueva is always a great player to watch as the attacking midfielder has the capacity to create goals out of thin air, and defensive stars like Aldo Corzo and Miguel Trauco can always move quickly on the counter-attack.
Many Peru fans will be glad to see Paolo Guerrero back in the squad after the striker’s ban for using performance-enhancing drugs. Plus there are plenty more forwards like Jefferson Farfán who are more than capable of getting some important goals for Peru. So keep an eye on William Hill’s odds of 50/1 for Paolo Guerrero to pick up the Golden Boot in Russia this summer.
Who manages Peru?
Ricardo Gareca has only been managing Peru since 2015, but he has already created a great side full of young players who will be more than keen to show the world what they’ve got. What’s particularly impressive about the Argentinian manager, is the way that he’s developed an entertaining style of play in the Peruvian side that thrives on short passing and plenty of possession to unlock more formidable opponents.
Gareca has imposed plenty of discipline on his young Peru side, and it’s clearly worked wonders in helping them defy the doubters to reach the World Cup finals. And with a good run of form that saw Peru reach the semi-finals of the Copa America, it’s evident that Gareca has become something of a hero for many Peruvian football fans.
Why bet on Peru?
Peru might be something of a long shot for most punters, but we think that the team could continue their run of good luck to reach the final sixteen. Whilst they will probably crumble in the face of a strong France team, we’re expecting a win against Australia, and they could easily hold their own against Denmark.
Ricardo Gareca’s squad are something of an unknown quantity in global football, as it’s been well over thirty years since they last appeared at a World Cup. But if they can somehow squeeze into second place in Group C, then they will end up facing the winners of Group D. This has the potential of seeing them playing against Argentina in what could be a thrilling South American grudge match.
So whilst many bookies don’t fancy Peru’s chances of reaching the final stages of the 2018 World Cup, you can take advantage of NetBet’s 195/1 odds for Peru to win the World Cup outright. And regardless of what happens in Russia, we’re expecting to see plenty more from the young and talented Peruvian team in the future.