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USA vs. Mexico predictions: Picks and best bets for Thursday’s World Cup qualifier

USA takes on Mexico in Mexico City on Thursday for the second time in this round of World Cup qualifying play. We go over some of the best bets ahead of this weekend’s contest.

Mexico v Panama - Concacaf 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers Photo by Hector Vivas/Getty Images

The US Men’s National Team will kick off their final window of World Cup qualifiers with a match against Mexico on Thursday, March 24. Kickoff is set for 10:00 p.m. ET and can be watched on CBS Sports Network, or via livestream on Paramount+.

The USMNT has never won a WCQ match at Estadio Azteca, but there’s no better time to start than now. USA is tied with Mexico in the table with 21 points, but the Americans hold second place thanks to the goal differential tiebreaker. A win in Mexico combined with a loss from Costa Rica and Panama would clinch a spot in Qatar in November for USA, but any other result will take some more effort in their final two matches to earn a top three finish and an automatic berth into the World Cup finals.

Let’s look at some of the best bets ahead of Thursday’s contest with odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

USA vs. Mexico best bets

USA clean sheet: No (-450)

Let’s start with a relatively easy and safe one. The odds on USA giving up at least one goal in Mexico are set at -450, and with good reason. In 13 games between the USMNT and Mexico at Estadio Azteca, the Americans have only been able to keep a clean sheet twice. Once in a 1-0 victory in a 2012 friendly match, which is still the only win USA has ever recorded at that stadium, and once in 2013 when they earned a 0-0 draw in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers.

To add to that, Mexico has only been held scoreless at home once in their last 10 matches at Estadio Azteca. Sure, the minus odds on this one might not be very appealing, but it’s almost a guarantee that Mexico will get on the scoresheet on Thursday night.

Mexico to win (-110)

The USA was able to win three straight over their Mexican rivals in 2021, with two of those being tournament finals as the USMNT took home the trophies in the CONCACAF Gold Cup and Nations League last summer. Both wins came over El Tri, which was massive for USA’s confidence. They also downed Mexico with a 2-0 score in their first meeting of the final round of World Cup qualifying back in November.

All three of those results came at home, in front of a USMNT-heavy crowd. Traveling to Mexico City and getting a win at Estadio Azteca is a completely different beast, as is shown by the history between these two on Mexican soil. USA has never won a WCQ match at Estadio Azteca, and in fact, Mexico has only lost two WCQ matches at home in their history since the Azteca opened in 1966. While a win would be monumental for the Americans, El Tri will be looking for revenge and will likely come away with all three points.

Raul Jimenez to score anytime (+175)

The Wolverhampton Wanderers striker will be looking to add a third goal to his tally in this final round of World Cup qualifiers. He scored on the road against El Salvador back in October, and put the lone goal in the net at home in February against Panama. After being held scoreless by the Americans back in November, all the players from El Tri will be looking to return the favor, and Jimenez should be expected to be at the focus of that attack.

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