Group A contains the hosts Russia, so there will be plenty of attention across the three matchdays, but it is Uruguay that are the clear favourites to finish in first place at the 2018 World Cup. In Tipbet’s season bets before the first match on Thursday, the South Americans are 1.70 to win their group, with the hosts at 2.85.

These odds will clearly fluctuate as the tournament evolves but the crucial match is looking to be on matchday three between the two countries which could well act as a play-off for top spot. First, Uruguay will have to deal with Egypt as the two teams clash on Friday afternoon in their opener at the Central Stadium in Yekaterinburg.

The Africans are appearing at just their third World Cup having made the finals in 1934 and then 1990. Their squad, therefore, is inexperienced at the highest level – though they did reach the 2017 final of the Africa Cup of Nations – with Mo Salah as their standout talent. The forward had a sensational first season at Liverpool, scoring 44 goals as the Reds reached the Champions League final, though a shoulder injury appeared to put his participation in jeopardy. The 25-year-old has travelled to Russia and his form will be crucial to the Pharaohs’ success.

Indeed, as part of Tipbet’s great World Cup odds, individual goalscorers can be backed and Salah is 4.00 to find the net at any point during Friday’s game. Uruguay have plenty of firepower themselves, with Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani 2.35 and 2.25 respectively to score.

When it comes to the match winner markets, the South Americans are strongly expected to get three points – they are available at 1.60 to outright do so. Egypt are 6.50 for a win themselves, though a draw (3.65) would still keep them in contention to qualify for the last-16.

There are 100 markets in total to choose from, with top odds that cover every possibility. In addition, for an in-depth look at Group A and its likely outcome, why not check out the preview at the Tipbet blog.