The 2018 FIFA World Cup – Knockout Stage Betting Breakdown

We are back! Yes, we have returned with the next stage of our World Cup betting adventure and *drum roll* it was a disaster! After a satisfactory betting performance during the 2018 World Cup group stage, we thought that we’d cracked the code of every team that made it to the knockout phase. Unfortunately, we couldn’t have been more wrong. Sure, we had some success, but that is a far cry from what we did during the group stage; at least when it comes to earnings. But enough of us whining, let’s see how did precisely. However, before we start, here are a couple of key points about this project, as well as a quick recap of the previous article, which you can find here.

The same rules applied during this stage of World Cup betting.

  • We used 10Bet, the best-rated betting app on our site, to place all bets.
  • We played with our own money; 10Bet was not a part of this project.
  • And, of course, our main goal was to have fun. But that doesn’t mean we didn’t give it our best!

When it comes to our performance during the group stage, we managed to guess correctly 25% of the matches. Additionally, we had 11 winning bet slips, our most significant win was €46, plus we managed to predict every England’s game during this stage of the competition. However, our wallet balance did go below zero, sitting at -€9 before the knockout stage began.

With that out of the way, let’s see how we fared during the entire 2018 FIFA World Cup knockout phase, and after that, we will go in-depth stage by stage and slip by slip. Enjoy!

Breakdown of our Bets in the Knockout Phase

As you probably know, there are 14 games in the knockout phase of the World Cup, excluding the finals and the game for the 3rd place – eight best of 16 games, four matches in the quarter-finals, and two semi-finals games. So, out of these 14 clashes we predicted correctly only three, which is around 21% win rate. Unacceptable, we know. Not that we are looking for excuses, but the 2018 World Cup was full of surprises, both during the group and the knockout stage. I mean, who could have predicted that Spain would lose to Russia and Croatia to make it to the finals. Not us!

As we expected, 10Bet provided excellent odds on all matches, proving its status as one of the best betting sites in the UK. This time, our biggest win was €33.5, and our biggest loss robbed us out of €123, but more about them later. Additionally, we only cashed out two bet slips out of the ten we played, resulting in a massive hit to our wallet. Nevertheless, we had enough money to finish this betting adventure, and who knows, maybe we will profit from the last two games that are scheduled for this Saturday and Sunday.

Important Stats

  • 21% win rate
  • Biggest win €33.5
  • Two winning bet slips

The Best of 16 Disaster

The Best of 16 phase gave us a couple of incredible games and some genuinely dull ones. Of course, everybody remembers the match between France and Argentina, probably the most exciting game in the entire World Cup. Then there were games like Russia vs Spain. Don’t get us wrong; this was a huge accomplishment for the hosts, but the way the match played out was a snooze-fest. Regardless, let’s see how we did in all this chaos.

Belgium vs Japan – Win €14.7

Unfortunately, this is our first and only win in this part of the cup. However, even though we played a relatively safe bet (Belgium to win and both to score), the game was not as easy as most thought it would be. Sure, Belgium did win and qualify to the next round, but not before giving us a heart attack. Those two goals that Japan scored in the second half would mean doom to most teams, but not to Belgium. Somehow, Red Devils managed to regroup and score three goals in less than 25 minutes, ending the game 3-2 in Belgium’s favour.

belgium vs japan win

Who could have predicted this outcome? Well, we did… sort of. Our train of thought went something like this – Belgium crushing Japan with a two or three-goal difference, then Japan scoring a goal in the late stage of the game. However, it went the opposite way. It was Japan who was leading with a two-goal difference, and Belgium was trying to save themselves. But in the end, it all turned out excellent for everyone (except for Japan, of course), with Belgium advancing to the quarter-finals and us winning a shy of €15. It’s not an enormous win, but we would take anything after missing the first three games of the Best of 16 phase.

Spain, how?! – Loss €16

Spain losing in the Best of 16 stage to Russia was probably the most unexpected thing that happened in the 2018 World Cup. While we didn’t lose a lot of money on this slip, we didn’t even think that Russia could beat the 2010 World Cup winners. But as the whole world now knows it, they did.

spain vs russia win

Interestingly, we weren’t so sure about Fury’s performance, or at least how they will qualify. That is why we decided to play it as safe as possible, and we wagered on Spain to win. Yes, we didn’t even dare to bet on goals. We reasoned that Russia has the advantage of the home turf, so the game could be a lot tougher than most would think. This proved to be correct, with only two goals on both sides during the regular and extra time. Of course, this led to penalties, which should have been easy work for Spain. However, Russia came into the shootout level-headed, scoring four out of four while Spain missed two. Sure, we lost the bet slip, but moments like these are what we love the most about this betting adventure.

The Quarter-Finals Recovery

After missing seven out of eight games in the Best of 16 stage, we decided to step up our game; or at least try to. And sure enough, we predicted two out of four games in the quarter-finals. Unfortunately, we only cashed out one betting slip, as the second pair of games was on a combo slip. So, let’s check them out.

Uruguay vs France – Win €23.10

First, let’s check out our winning quarter-finals bet slip. The game was between Uruguay and France, and most were predicting that the Blues would advance to the semi-finals. This was nothing too surprising, as France is one of the heavy favourites to win the World Cup. However, we didn’t just want to bet on France to advance because the odds were small. Instead, we opted for a riskier bet and placed €7 on France to win and under 2.5 goals.

uruguay vs france win

The bet came right on the button. France was dominant throughout the whole game, scoring the first goal five minutes before the half-time whistle. This result worked for us as well, but it was a little bit too risky for France, considering how aggressive Uruguay was playing. Luckily for French, Griezmann managed to put one in the net in the 61st minute of the game. While we were happy that France cemented their lead, one more goal would have taken our bet slip down. Praise to gambling gods, the third goal never came, and we celebrated with a €23.10 win.

2nd Pair of Quarter-Finals Games Fail – Loss €123

After this small (but important) victory, we felt like we needed a bigger win. That is why we have decided to create a combo bet slip and wager on both games on the second day. The matches were between England and Sweden and Croatia and Russia. So how did we bet? Naturally, we had to support our team, so we placed a bet on England to win and under 2.5 goals. Additionally, we thought that Russia lucked out in their last game against Spain. Therefore, we were convinced that Croatia would make easy work of the hosts, so we put our money on them to win and under 2.5 goals. These two games had combined odds of 12.06, and with €10 on the line, our potential win was €123.

The first game on the schedule was England vs Sweden. Our boys breezed through the Swedes, scoring goals in the 30th and 58th minute of the game. With that out of the way, the only thing left was for Croatia to win. At this point, we were thinking of defending the slip by placing bets on the draw or over 2.5 goals. After all, the potential win was well over €100, and our bet on Croatia to win was optimistic. However, we decided to stick to our initial prediction and hope for the best, which turned out to be a huge mistake. Sure, Croatia did advance to the semi-finals, but not during the regular time. Instead, the game was decided on penalties, with Russia missing two and Croatia only one.

The Hope of Semi-Finals

By the time the semi-finals came, we were in a gutter; our wallet was running dry, and our self-esteem was stricken after predicting only three out of 12 games in the knockout stage. Sure, we got two quarter-finals matches right, but sadly only one was on a winning bet slip. Despite all this, our team, England, was doing well and we were having a ton of fun. With only four games left in the entire World Cup, it was now or never to make some money. So, here is what we did.

Double Loss in Semi-Finals – Loss €77.71

Yes, we missed both games. But the thing that hurt the most was England losing. This was probably the best chance for them to reach the finals, but Croatia proved once again that they are not to be underestimated. We must admit that we were a bit biased in this matchup. We were convinced that England would win so much so that we placed a bet on them to win and under 2.5 goals. The potential win was €36 after placing a €10 bet. Even though the match started incredibly for us, with England scoring in the 5th minute, soon the game became all about Croatia. In fact, they had double the amount of shots than England. And sure enough, one of them ended in the net, taking away England’s lead and prolonging the game for another 30 minutes. However, their relentless attack didn’t stop, and in the 109th minute of the game, they scored another goal, eliminating our team and crushing our dreams.

semi finals lost

On the other hand, France vs Belgium was not what we expected. Both teams are famous for their incredible goal scoring capabilities, so we felt that this game would have 3+ goals at least. Additionally, we don’t know why, but through this entire World Cup, we were underestimating France. I guess, the squad being young and lacking experience was the deciding factor. However, they proved us wrong repeatedly. So, looking back on our bet on Belgium to win and both teams to score (possible win €41.71), it does seem a bit foolish. France won the game easily, despite winning 1-0. Throughout the whole game, they were attacking, completing 19 shots on the opposing goal. Moreover, Belgium looked lost, making fouls left and right and endangering France’s goal only nine times.


Well, that’s it for our 2018 World Cup betting adventure. We hope that you enjoyed these two breakdowns as much as we did. In the end, we predicted 15 out of 62 games, which is roughly a 25% success rate. Of course, this excludes the final two games for the 3rd place and the finals, but we will give our takes on them in a minute. Our most significant win remained during the final round of Group G when we won €46.41. However, the loss that hurt us the most (financially) was the second pair of quarter-finals games, where we were just one goal away from €123.

Lastly, we would like to commend the England team. Despite not reaching the finals, we are proud of their performance. The team has many young players, so we are sure that this won’t be the last we see of them at this level. Also, they’ve made us a nice chunk of money. After all, we did predict all of their matches correctly, except the last one against Croatia.

What about the finals and game for the 3rd place? Don’t worry; we haven’t forgotten about them. We just wanted to wrap up this project before they play out so that we can enjoy watching the games over the weekend. So, without further ado, here are our predictions for the last two games of the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia!

Our Prediction for the Finals and Third Place Play-Off

Well, it’s time to make our last two predictions. First, let’s talk about the game for the 3rd place. England and Belgium are meeting for the second time during this World Cup, with our boys losing the first clash. However, as we said in our group stage breakdown, we think that the loss was on purpose. So, this time around, we are placing a biased bet on England to win, with a potential win of €32.50. The game is going to be tough, but we believe that the Brits will take the 3rd place despite being underdogs in this matchup.

finals prediction

Finally, the finals between France and Croatia is a bit heavily swayed into France’s favour if you ask us. Sure, they are the favourites to win, but their opponents are here for a reason. They managed to clean up their whole group, beat England and Russia, and stylishly do all of that. However, we think that this won’t be enough to take down France, but they could score a goal. Therefore, our bet is on France to win and both teams to score, with a possible win of €150.

Also, right now, we have a zero in our 10Bet wallet because we placed all our money on the last two games. But, hopefully, we will have €182 waiting for us after this Sunday. So, wish us luck!