Wednesday, 9 June 2010

World Cup Preview

Keep checking your watches people, if we all stare at them hard enough, maybe we can make Friday come sooner. The World Cup begins on the 11th with the hosts South Africa taking on Mexico in Johannesburg.

The 2010 World Cup will involve all seven previous winners of the Trophy, and each of its 32 teams and 64 matches promises to be fascinating in their own ways. Italy are looking to equal Brazil's World Cup record of winning the competition 5 times, while this is Slovakia's first ever World Cup. At 22 years old, Lionel Messi is aiming to set the World Cup alight with dazzling skills, while Miroslav Klose who is 10 years older needs six more goals to pass Ronaldo and become the highest ever World Cup goalscorer. Every way you turn there is a record to be broken or a story to be told.

Of the 23 players that were short-listed for the 2009 FIFA World Player of the Year award, 19 will be on show at the World Cup in South Africa. While it is no surprise that 6 of these players belong to the Spain squad, England actually have the second highest amount of short-listed players with 4.

The groups themselves are also promising to be most interesting. Italy arguably have the easiest group, and the average FIFA World Ranking of the teams in Group F is 37, compared to 18 in Group D. In Group G the highest ranked team in the World, Brazil, are grouped with 3rd ranked Portugal and Ivory Coast who are ranked 27. Group A is probably the most balanced group of them all. Hosts South Africa should be boosted by their home advantage, and France, Uruguay and Mexico are ranked 9th, 16th and 17th respectively.

Everything is ready, lets hope for an unforgettable month.

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