In this post we present our estimated results for the first matches in group B. This group will start with the top match between the European champions from Portugal and one of the top favourites Spain. In the second match Morocco will meet the team from the Islamic Republic of Iran, where both teams are under pressure to win and to keep the minimal chance to qualify for the Round of 16. We give predictions for the result of both matches in terms of probabilities, including predictions for the scores.
In the opening match Spain is clear favourite, but Portugal has a 50/50 chance to score:
The estimated scores are as follows: we favour a 1-0 victory of Spain followed by a 0-0 draw:
The situation in the second match in group B becomes more interesting and is almost completely open. Morocco and Iran both have chances to win:
The predicted scores are as follows:
Our model favours a low scoring result: 1-0, 0-1, 0-0 or 1-1.