Disclaimer: This article is an opinion piece by all means. So, kindly do not hold your breath out and turn yourself blue in a fit of rage, merely because we do not rate your team in particular.
The biggest sporting event in the world is back after its four-year hiatus. The sound of Vuvuzela, girls cheering their favourite footballers and photographers hawking around picturing the craziest fans (and the prettiest too) will be a fairly common sight over the next one month.
Debates have already begun on social media forums between rival fans on why they believe their team is going to lift the most prestigious gold-ware in the history of football. We at Sports Dungeon decided to rate the top teams participating and their chances of lifting the world cup.
The defending champions and every hipsters’ favourite team. Germany is entering the world cup again with a squad that boasts of a perfect blend of youngsters as well as players in prime many of which were involved in the title-winning run last time around. They have definitely upgraded their attack since their last outing who will be supporting their golden boy Thomas Muller, who is known to up his game to superman levels in this particular tournament. The only thing holding them back will be the mental block that has not seen the same team win the world cup consecutively for more than 50 years now.
Likelihood of winning – 9/10
How would a pony hatchback look with a jet engine attached to it? Look no further than Argentina’s national football team. The front-line and the wings contain the likes of Messi, Aguero Dybala and company who plan to attack the hell out of opponents. The decent midfield will give them apt support while their defence is laughable at best. A major national trophy has eluded Lionel so far, and for him to lift the world cup will require a special effort from the mouth-watering frontline to outscore their opponents by a considerable margin in every game they play.
Likelihood of winning – 7/10
The team should be renamed as Cristiano Ronaldo and others because he is the one who does the heavy lifting in all the major tournaments. That being said, Portugal surprised everyone by winning the Euro where they played the final without Cristiano. Still the team around Ronaldo is mediocre at best and it will take their Euro 16 levels of luck to win the World Cup this year. However, we can expect Portugal to fight it out until the later rounds giving their opponents a run for their money.
Likelihood of winning – 6/10
A team that is five star in almost all the departments and contains raw pace in the attack will be every team’s nightmare this coming world cup. The team lost out Euros to Portugal a couple of years back and will now be looking at the gold-ware to redeem themselves. Antoine Griezmann won the player of tournament at Euro 16 and looks capable to earn himself a similar accolade in this world cup. However, his teammates Ousmane Dembele and Kylian Mbappe looking to etch their names in the annals of football themselves. Watch out guys we have one of the favourites right here.
Likelihood of winning – 9/10
The team that won its first world cup not even a decade back will again step in the tournament as one of the favourites. With a fine team at disposal, Julen Lopetegui’s men might be missing a David Villa or a prime Fernando Torres in its frontline, which could see the goal scoring duties fall more to its midfielders. The goliath named David De Gea in defense will make it ridiculously difficult for the opponents to put the ball in Spain’s net. However, the team is no way as strong as the one that brought the world cup home in 2010.
Likelihood of winning – 8/10
Hardly anyone expects England to win the world cup this year especially since they couldn’t do it in the golden era. The midfield that once boasted of Gerrard and Lampard now has Henderson and Eric Dier to look at. Raheem sterling and Harry Kane are the only world beaters in this squad, however, their performance for national team has been average at best. We can still expect England to be in headlines this world cup once they get eliminated in an upset similar to their heroics against Iceland in Euros.
Likelihood of winning – 4/10
The team has won the world cup frickin’ 5 times in the history of the tournament more than anyone else. While they were favourites in the last world cup, they were routed out by Germany as their two most influential players in Neymar and Thiago Silva missed the game. This world cup they will be on a completely new level with Phillipe Coutinho and Gabriel Jesus added to their game changers list. Their most creative outlet will still be Neymar who has entered into his prime and will be terrifying defences on his own. Their defensive line may not be the best in the tournament ut is more than capable to do its job.
Likelihood of winning – 9/10
Belgium is like England of 2000s that have classy individuals in every part of the field who might just fall short of going the distance. The ability of their manager to blend this team into a cohesive unit would be critical to Belgium’s run in the world cup. However, leaving out a key player in Nainggolan back home says a lot about Belgium’s manager Roberto Martinez about his treatment of players who question his tactics. Eden Hazard will be the one to watch out for Belgium as he would be expected to replicate his Chelsea performances for the Belgian Red Devils.
Likelihood of winning – 5/10
Luis Suarez and company are fully capable of a causing mayhem to the opponent’s defence. Their progress depends on how far Cavani and Suarez carry their team.
Classy midfield and above average all round. Anything beyond round of 16 can be considered success for the team.
James Rodriquez shined in the previous world cup and will be expected to carry his team again. Fully capable of annoying its opponents and is more likely to reach further than England.
One man team similar to Portugal and revolves around Mohammed Salah. The team’s progress depends on Salah’s early return who is nursing the injuries sustained by wrestling Ramos in Champions League final.
You won’t be questioned to suggest that the team is capable of causing a couple of upsets given the talent they have at their disposal but that’s about it.
World Cup has always been known to be a spectacle of an event bringing with itself a mix of emotions and a sense of festivity. With so many teams on par with each other in terms of ability, this year looks to be one of the most entertaining to say the least.
Ali Shaan Haider
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