World Cup predictions: Denmark vs. Australia, France vs. Peru, Argentina vs. Croatia
4:52 PM ET
- ESPN staff
Our experts were on the money on Wednesday, going 29/30 collectively in terms of correctly picking Portugal, Uruguay and Spain as winners. Two of the experts also correctly nailed a score prediction for a 20-point bonus, meaning we had a tie for top spot between ESPN Deportes' Mauricio Pedroza and ESPN Brazil's Leonardo Bertozzi on 50 points.
Our experts are riding high after Wednesday's results but what will they have in store for an encore? Find out as the second round of games continues with three more games on Thursday.
We start off in Group C as Denmark meet Australia. It might come as a surprise that the draw is actually the most popular result here, with six of our pundits opting for that outcome. ESPN Australia's Steph Brantz, though, once again expects her team to lose and backs a 2-1 Denmark victory. No one is predicting the Socceroos to grab all three points.
UPDATE: After an early goal from Denmark's Christian Eriksen, Australia fought their way back into the game to earn a deserved 1-1 draw with the Danes. Six of our 10 experts pick up the 10 points for predicting the correct result, including Gab Marcotti, Julien Laurens, Ale Moreno and Alex Pareja who also get the 20-point bonus for calling the exact scoreline tacked on for a 30-point fixture.
Our experts have come flying out of the gates on Thursday and Marcotti, Laurens, Moreno and Pareja will look to distance themselves from the pack with the second game of the day.
Next up it's France against Peru. As you might expect, no one is backing the South Americans to win, despite their lively an d cruelly unlucky performance against Denmark. In fact, ESPN Argentina's Nicolas Baier (2-2) is the only one backing Los Incas to even grab a point.
UPDATE: France's narrow win over Peru makes winners of nine of our 10 experts. Ricardo Puig grabs 30 points for predicting the 1-0 scoreline, as does France correspondent Julien Laurens, who is now perfect through two games. Julien tops the standings after two rounds with a perfect 60 points with Gab Marcotti, Ale Moreno and Alex Pareja chasing him with 40 apiece. Can Julien go 90 for 90? He has Argentina winning today's finale 2-1 over Croatia.
Rounding off the day's action is Argentina against Croatia. ESPN Mexico's Ricardo Puig has had some very good predictions so far during the tournament, and he's the only one to go for Croatia here. Nicolas Baier and ESPN Deportes' Rafa Ramos elect for a draw while Argentina have the overwh elming support of the other seven panelists.
UPDATE: Shoutout to ESPN Mexico's Ricardo Puig whose contrarian pick of Croatia to win proved to be right on the money. They say it is sometimes better to take the road less travelled and Ricardo can back that up today. Puig was the only one on our panel to pick Croatia and thus the only one to pick up points from the final game of the day.
Julien Laurens, despite having Argentina to win 2-1 in the late game, holds onto top spot as our daily winner. The France correspondent nailed the result and scoreline for each of the first two games, amassing 60 points in the process. Julien is showing to be quite adept at this, having also won on Tuesday.
There are more games to come and Friday's hat trick of games is a doozy with Brazil vs. Costa Rica, Iceland vs. Nigeria and Serbia vs. Switzerland all having significant importance in terms of group permutations.
Check out how our pundits got on w ith their predictions for Wednesday's games and remember to join the pundits' league in Match Predictor.
We've got our top talent on hand from England, the United States, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Australia and Africa -- many of whom will be based out in Russia for the tournament -- to analyse each and every one of the 64 matches.
We'll score our experts just as we do in the Match Predictor -- 10 points for correct result, with a bonus 20 points for getting the scoreline right too. Who will come out on top on Friday?
ESPN Experts panel:
ESPN FC: Gab Marcotti, Julien Laurens, Ale Moreno
ESPN Deportes: Rafa Ramos, Alex Pareja
ESPN Argentina: Nicolas Baier
ESPN Mexico: John Sutcliffe, Javier Trejo Garay, Ricardo Puig
ESPN Australia: Steph Brantz