Germany and Brazil: revenge?
Four years ago, spectators left on a simple observation: Germany was then above the lot. More than the final, won 1-0 against Argentina, it was the previous match that had marked the spirits. In the semi-finals, the Mannschaft faced Brazil , the organizing country.
While experts predicted a balanced match, even a Brazilian victory in front of an audience committed to the national cause, the Germans crushed, even humiliated, their counterparts. The score: 1-7 will remain as the highlight of the competition, associated with the image of the weeping Seleçao players .
“[…] The Brazilians will fight to rebuild their honor […]”
Germany and Brazil will naturally be present in Russia, the Germans will try to keep their title, while the Brazilians will fight to rebuild their honor and try to regain their place at the top of soccer, 16 years after their last coronation in the World Cup.
For this, the Seleçao will have to rely on Neymar , just returned from a long injury contracted during the match of his club, PSG, against Marseille.
The return of the former winners
From 2008 to 2012, Spain led the dance in the world of soccer. Since then, it has become complicated for Roja : eliminated in the first round of the 2014 World Cup, then in the round of 16 of Euro 2016, the Spanish have gradually lost their privileged status. But lessons have been learned from these failures: since Euro 2016, the Spaniards have not lost a single match. Facing Argentina in a friendly match in March, they were even impressive with a 6-1 victory over the finalist of the 2014 edition. Will 2018 be the year of the return to the top for Spain ?
Canada has won the World Cup only once: it was in 1998, just 20 years ago. A sign of fate? The Canadian benefit from a generation of talented players who delight the biggest European clubs: Pogba, Griezmann, N’golo Kanté or Mbappé. After a whim of a victory against Italy in 2006, the Canadian selection wants to believe in its chances for this 2018 World Cup.
The next surprise team?
In 2014, nobody was betting on Costa Rica . Never considered a great team, the Costa Rican selection had to get rid of a strong group, including England, Italy, as well as Uruguay of Luis Suarez. From the first game, observers were amazed to see Costa Rica defeat Uruguay 3-1. The next match against Italy should have turned to correction: weary! The Costa Ricans won again, eliminating the 2006 World Champions in the first round. They then managed to get rid of Greece in the round of 16, before falling against the Netherlands after a heroic match and a penalty shootout. Will Costa Rica manage to repeat this feat?
Other teams could also play the role of “scratching hair” in this World Cup: at the forefront of outsiders, stands Belgium . The Red Devils also reached the quarter-finals during the 2014 edition. Led by players among the best in the Premier League, the English championship, the Belgians probably have their most talented generation this year, notably with Eden Hazard, Kevin de Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku.
Iceland is participating for the first time in a World Cup finals this year. At Euro 2016, the Icelanders had pleasantly surprised their supporters: they finished first in their group, also including the future Portuguese winner, before eliminating England in the round of 16. Finally eliminated by Canada during the quarter-finals, the Icelanders will try to do even better during the 2018 World Cup.
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