June 11, 2010

How the World Cup will turn out

by Dan Bilicki In: Picks, Soccer

With the opening kickoff in only a matter of hours, it’s time to make RTP’s official predictions for the greatest tournament in the World. Starting with the Group winners and second place teams, you might have gotten a handle on who we think will go through from the group previews, but here they are in a nice, convenient package.

Group A: France, Mexico
Group B: Argentina, Nigeria
Group C: England, USA
Group D: Germany, Serbia
Group E: Netherlands, Cameroon
Group F: Italy, Slovakia
Group G: Brazil, Ivory Coast
Group H: Spain, Chile

The second round will have a ton of good games and some great upsets. When there’s only 90 minutes between advancing and going home, anything can happen. Especially when one referee’s whistle can change an entire nation’s tournament. Here’s how it will all break down.

France def. Nigeria
Argentina def. Mexico
Serbia def. England
Germany def. USA
Netherland def. Slovakia
Cameroon def. Italy
Brazil def. Chile
Spain def. Ivory Coast

In the quarterfinals, there’s always one scrappy underdog who gets further than many think they can. Whether it’s through poor reffing, suspended players or even one mistake, there’s always one. Mine? I’ll take Serbia and their solid defence to force some teams in giving up a counter-attacking mistake.

Serbia def. France
Argentina def. Germany
Brazil def. Netherlands
Spain def. Cameroon

The semifinals we’ve mapped out are two drastically different ties. Brazil and Serbia could play one of the most defensive games of the tournament, with the South American side probably advancing on a 1-0 score. Spain vs. Argentina could be an absolute barn-burner, featuring many of the world’s best players plus the arguable No.1 in Lionel Messi. It’s too bad the Maradona will probably blow it somehow.

Brazil def. Serbia
Spain def. Argentina

The dream final will come true. Brazil vs. Spain will be one for the ages. But there’s two key stats that weigh heavily against Spain. First, a northern hemisphere team hasn’t won a Cup in the southern hemisphere since 1958, when Brazil won it in Sweden. Second, no nation has won its first Cup in a foreign nation since that 1958 Final. The Brazilians won’t win it pretty, like they’re used to, but a Cup is a Cup and this will be their record sixth title.

Brazil def. Spain

This is going to be one hell of a month.

3 Comments

  1. From what I’ve seen, anybody could win this non-starter of a WC. Total mediocrity so far; even the German win was against an Aussie team that was embarrasingly bad, and only 10 of them. Your own predictions are, well, ‘predictable’, with the exception of Serbia in the semis (don’t see that happening frankly). If I had a nickel for everyone I’ve heard predict a Brazil – Spain final . . . Here’s one to file under ‘ you heard it here first, folks’: Italy – Netherlands final.

    Jim

  2. From what I’ve seen so far, anybody could win this non-starter of a WC. Total mediocrity. Even the German win was against an embarrasingly bad Aussie side (and only 10 of them). your own predictions are, well, ‘predictable’; if I had a nickel for everyone I’ve heard say a Brazil – Spain final . . . .

    Here’s one to file under ‘you heard it here first’: Italy – Netherlands final.

    Jim

  3. I’m confused, so if the USA wins they advance, even if England wins also?

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