The Brazilian Head Coach Scolari announced 3 days ago the squad he will be taking to the field to try and bring the 6th World Cup to Brazil. Since the 50’s, Brazil has been a powerhouse where World Cup is concerned. Can they do it again, this time at home?
Probably, but it’s not going to be easy. The reigning champs Spain, the talented Germany and the ever dangerous Argentina are going to bring their top game. But it’s easy to bet on European forces that have proven over and over that they are contenders.
How about the underdogs? Solid teams that play system football and rely on teamwork and good coaching to make their way to the top?
Let’s take a look at 3 teams that will make the top dogs run for their money.
3 – Netherlands
Last World Cup’s runner up is certain to be a strong contender this year. Despite not having the same roster quality or national league fame like Germany, Spain and England, the Dutch went 9-0-1 on the qualifying round. Van Persie, Arjen Robben and Van Der Vaart will lead their team in their 11th appearance on the WC and they will do so with one thing in mind – bringing back the Netherlands to the mainstream of soccer.
2 – Portugal
After hiring Luis Felipe Scolari (HC for Brazil – 2002 and 2014) in 2003 the Portuguese squad saw an increase in success on and off the field. Suddenly one of the weaker European teams became a force on the soccer and the marketing scenes, and one year later they would become Europe’s 2nd best. The 2006 World Cup in Germany saw the team reach the Semi-Finals for their first time ever eventually losing to France 0-1. In 2010 they were back and did their homework on the group stage, including an amazing 7-0 victory over North Korea. They would be defeated by the future champions Spain in the RO16.
So, bet on this: Portugal is not going to Brazil to play around. They have the players, they have the experience and they have the drive to win.
Oh, and off course, they have the reigning best football player in the world, FIFA’s MVP Cristiano Ronaldo.
1 – Uruguay
The last time they won a championship was right in the heart of Rio de Janeiro, beating and silencing 200000 fans in Brazil. Before then, it was the 30’s, but don’t make the mistake of underestimating them. Uruguay has one of the most physical players in the world, playing with pride and will. Stars like Diego Forlán, Luis Soarez and Diego Lugano (Captain), will play their hearts out on the field, trying to bring back the glory they once held in the sport. Be sure to watch some great games with this lot, full of energy, yellow cards and excitement.
Watch out big dogs… the thirst is real!