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A Numbers Game: Spain, Japan the favourites to reach semi-finals at FanDuel

Japan celebrates Japan celebrates - The Canadian Press

We are down to the elite eight teams still standing at the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Seven of the eight remaining teams were among the top-10 choices to win it all at FanDuel before the tournament.

The other team is Colombia – a 190-to-1 long shot to win the Women’s World Cup before the event started on July 20.

After surprising with a first-place finish in Group H and then beating Jamaica 1-0 in the Round of 16 on Tuesday, Colombia is down to 32-to-1 to win the tournament at FanDuel.

However, their toughest test is still ahead of them heading into their quarter-final showdown with England as the biggest longshot to reach the semi-finals.

Meanwhile, tournament co-hosts Australia are on the verge of reaching the final four, with a showdown versus France set for Saturday morning on TSN.

First up, we get a double-header that begins Thursday night (9 pm ET/6 pm PT on TSN, and the TSN App) as Spain clashes with the Netherlands.

After that, Japan and Sweden will meet early Friday (3:30 am ET/12:30 am PT on TSN, and the TSN App).

The FanDuel Best Bets in this column went 3-1 to start the knockout stage.

I’m looking for another winner this morning relying on the same formula that worked for me in the Round of 16.

Spain was the second choice to win the Women’s World Cup pre-tournament behind only the United States, and after stumbling in a 4-0 loss to Japan on July 31 to finish second in Group C, they bounced back with a 5-1 win over Switzerland in the Round of 16 last Saturday.

Only England is a bigger favourite to advance to the semi-finals than Spain at FanDuel.

While I like Spain to advance past the Netherlands, I won’t bet them at -240 odds.

Instead, I’ll parlay Spain to advance with Japan to advance at plus-money.

The Japanese women have really been one of the most fascinating stories of the tournament so far.

As a 34-to-1 long shot, Japan had the same odds to win it all as Canada had at the start of the tournament.

Now, Japan is the third choice to win it all heading into the quarter-finals at +470.

Only England and Spain have shorter odds.

Led by Hinata Miyazawa, who leads all scorers with five goals in the tournament, Japan is -150 to advance with a win over Sweden.

A traditional parlay with Spain and Japan to advance gets me +136 odds at FanDuel.

I’ll lock in that parlay as my FanDuel Best Bet for the first set of Women’s World Cup quarter-final games.

FanDuel Best Bet: Spain & Japan To Advance +136