Football may well be a team game, but there is no getting away from the fact that several sides have become hugely reliant on the performances of particular individuals at this World Cup.
It can certainly be argued in the case of Argentina (Lionel Messi) and Brazil (Neymar) that they wouldn't have enjoyed such easy routes to the knock-out stage without their stars. In the case of Uruguay (Luis Suarez), I'm certain that the South Americans wouldn't have progressed without the ruthless finishing of the Liverpool front man.
Uruguay face a strong Colombia side tomorrow night and must do so without the banned Suarez. Sporting Index make the Colombians 0.35-0.55 goal favourites, but the better bet may well be selling the Uruguay team performance at 25. With 25 points awarded for a win, 10 points for a draw,
15 points for every goal scored, 10 points for a clean sheet, 10 points for hitting the woodwork and three points for every corner won, the market naturally attracts buyers.
However, five points are deducted for every yellow card and 15 points removed for each red, meaning that the make-up can be negative for a poor performing ill-disciplined side. There is every chance that Uruguay will lose their tempers if the game moves away from them.
As for Brazil, the hosts haven't been as impressive on the pitch as their results may suggest so far this tournament. They face a decent Chile side tomorrow who certainly won't make life easy for them. There is a case to be made for supporting the underdogs in the performance market.