2026 FIFA World Cup Early Odds and Predictions

FIFA, World Cup, 2026, Predictions, Soccer, Football

We just witnessed one of the most dramatic World Cup finals of all time. Lionel Messi ended the GOAT debate by winning the title with his Argentina, but can the veteran return once again for another try at soccer’s most prestigious trophy?

That’s only one of the questions we have for the next World Cup! I try to answer the most pressing ones by going through the early 2026 World Cup winner odds and analyzing the favorites in this article.

Naturally, it’s really early, and a lot will change, so you should be careful if you decide to bet on the 2026 World Cup champion way before the tournament.

FIFA World Cup 2026 Winner Betting Odds

  • France; +450
  • Brazil; +600
  • England; +800
  • Argentina; +900
  • Spain; +900
  • Germany; +1000
  • Portugal; +1400
  • The Netherlands; +1600

France and Brazil are the most likely winners in 2026, according to the best FIFA World Cup betting sites. Both sides are loaded with talent and should still be ahead of the curve in three and a half years.

However, the likes of England, Argentina, and Portugal will be lurking. They all have talented youngsters who can turn into world-class players by the next tournament.

Let’s dig a bit deeper to see what the top teams have to offer. I’ve split them into three groups based on their chances to go all the way in 2026.

Main Contenders for the 2026 FIFA World Cup

The first group features the three most likely winners of the 2026 World Cup. These nations have the talent and pedigree required to win the next title.

Let’s see why.


Is someone surprised by the 2026 World Cup winner odds for France? The country came painfully close to a second consecutive title in 2022, despite injuries to players like Karim Benzema, Paul Pogba, and N’Golo Kante, among others.

France is blessed with talent, even if several top players won’t be part of the next World Cup. Benzema already announced his retirement, and Kante, Hugo Lloris, Olivier Giroud, and Antoine Griezmann will almost certainly follow him before 2026.

That would hurt almost any country’s overall level, but France is different. Youngsters like Dayot Upamecano and Aurélien Tchouaméni are already world-class, while Kylian Mbappe will be 27 when the next World Cup is around.

The forward reached 6th in the all-time World Cup top scorers standings before the age of 24, so he’s only getting started.

I like France’s chances to win the 2026 World Cup, but the odds are so short compared to other teams. That’s not a good bet, so I advise you to pass.


Many thought Brazil would win the 2022 Qatar World Cup, but the team missed many chances against Croatia in the quarterfinals and lost. The lack of experience was a problem because many of the team’s forwards are still young.

Richarlison, Vinicius Junior, Raphinha, Gabriel Jesus, Rodrygo, and Martinelli will be 29 or younger next time around. That’s scary for anyone who tries to stop Brazil in the next World Cup.

The team will also have at least one world-class goalkeeper still active, so the main question marks are related to the defense and the midfield. If they can deliver a respectable performance, the forwards can do the rest.

Still, I’m not sure I’m willing to trust Brazil when the World Cup 2026 betting odds for the South Americans are so low.


I’m unsure about England’s performances in the last three big tournaments. They all followed the same pattern: the team was never involved in surprising results. England beat everyone they should’ve beaten but failed every single time the other team was favored.

This can be a symptom of poor mentality or inefficient coaching. The truth might be somewhere in the middle, though.

Tip:I’m not a fan of Gareth Southgate’s conservative approach against top teams. He also prefers some of his favorites over in-form players. The likes of Ben White, James Maddison, Trent Alexander-Arnold, Fikayo Tomori, and Ivan Toney deserved more chances to prove their worth.

The good news is that many English players should be much stronger by the next World Cup. Many young guns already have experience at the highest level, so this side will be formidable in Canada, Mexico, and the USA.

Just imagine how good Jude Bellingham, Bukayo Saka, Phil Foden, and Declan Rice will be in their prime. England could easily be the most talented team in the next World Cup.

World Cup 2026 Dark Horses

The next group features dark horses for the World Cup 2026. Most people expect a good run from these teams, even if not many view them as potential champions. They will surprise the world if they lift the title, but they won’t shock it.

Here’s what the countries in question are likely to offer in 4 years.


I was on the verge of putting Portugal in the main contenders group; the team is that good. All the noise around Ronaldo and some poor decisions in critical moments cost the country in Qatar, but that shouldn’t be the case in the next World Cup.

Most stars will be back stronger than ever. Ruben Dias, Diogo Dalot, Ruben Neves, Vitinha, Joao Felix, and Rafal Leao are all 25 or younger. If you add Bruno Fernandez, Bernardo Silva, and Joao Cancelo, who should be close to their best in 2026, this is an insane core.

Portugal will need to find a few more good defenders, but the fundamentals of a World Cup winning squad are there.


The reigning world champions are in heaven right now. Lionel Messi and his teammates just fulfilled the nation’s dream. Just look at the parade in Argentina!

Can Argentina come back and defend the trophy in 4 years? I see many talented players, but I don’t see enough to compete with the best countries in the world for one big reason.

Leo Messi probably won’t be back for the 2026 World Cup. Even if the icon is still on the team, he most likely won’t be the same player. Replacing a genius of such magnitude is impossible, so I expect Argentina to struggle next time around.


The early World Cup 2026 betting odds suggest that Germany shouldn’t be underestimated. I mostly agree with that, but the team has been so poor in the last few big tournaments.

The quality is there on paper because Germany has excellent players all over the pitch. However, the lack of a world-class striker and the inconsistent results are concerning.

The upcoming EURO 2024 makes it even harder to predict what will happen before the next World Cup. The Germans will be hosting, and the home advantage is a big deal in soccer.

The whole nation will be behind the team, and a major trophy could elevate the Germans for the 2026 FIFA World Cup. I’m not sure the odds for that are great, though, so I don’t like Germany’s chances.

World Cup 2026 Best Sleepers

The last group of nations I’m going to cover are unlikely to win the World Cup. They need more star power and debt to compete with the best under normal circumstances, but they are strong to beat anyone on a lucky day.

I’m talking about teams like Morocco in the previous World Cup: well-drilled, disciplined, and bold. I see a few countries that are better than most people think.


  • Odds to win the World Cup: +10000

Canada was one of the teams that impressed me the most in the 2022 World Cup. Most people only see the three defeats in Qatar, but there’s a lot of context behind them.

The country had to face future semifinalists Morocco and Croatia, as well as Belgium, one of the favorites before the start of the tournament. Canada was on top in large periods of these three games, even if the team failed to capitalize.

The nation should be even better on home soil, so I think we’ll see a deep run from Canada in the 2026 World Cup.


  • Odds to win the World Cup: +2500

The odds for Italy are insane right now. The nation failed to qualify for Qatar 2022, but this team won the 2020 European Championship just a year earlier.

Furthermore, Italy’s record in major tournaments is insane. The country has three World Cups, two European Championships, and several runner-up performances.

Italy is not among my favorites, but a small bet on the current odds makes a lot of sense.

World Cup 2026 Winner Prediction and Betting Pick

My prediction is that one of the three top contenders I highlighted will win the World Cup. They will have the depth and talent to go all the way. Brazil and France are slightly better, but the odds for England are just so much higher.

They are good enough for me to back the country and place small wagers on Portugal and Italy as backups. Both sides are underestimated right now, and I expect the prices to drop in the near future.

Pick 2:
Petko Stoyanov
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About Petko Stoyanov
My name is Petko Stoyanov, and I've been a gambling writer for more than ten years. I guess that was the natural path for me since I've loved soccer and card games for as long as I can remember! I have a long and fairly successful history with English Premier League betting and online poker, but I follow many other sports. I watch all big European soccer leagues, basketball, football, and tennis regularly, and I keep an eye on snooker, volleyball, and major UFC events.