Monday, 28 June 2010

A Look At The World Cup: Part Two

Holland vs Slovakia



The Dutch side haven’t really hit top form yet, but managed to overcome Denmark 2-0, a very tidy and hardworking Japan side 1-0 and the disappointing Cameroon side 2-1. Players such as Wesley Sneijder and Robin Van Persie have been vital for the Dutch side, helping them top the group with 9 points, scoring five goals and conceding just the one solitary goal.

Key Man

Wesley Sneijder

The Inter Milan midfielder has shown no signs of fatigue from his treble winning season in Italy, and has been instrumental in the midfield five, playing behind Robin Van Persie. Sneijder has an excellent long range shot, world class technique, the ability to unlock a defence and great passing ability.



The Slovakian side showed they were a very good side, who were unlucky to concede a late goal against New Zealand in the opening game to draw 1-1, while they lost to an impressive Paraguay 2-0, but Vladimir Weiss’s men produced the biggest upset by beating and knocking out the reigning and defending World Champions 3-2 in the final group game.

Key Man

Robert Vittek

The 28 year old striker built his career with 5 years at Nuremberg in Germany, before playing in France with Lille, and he now plays for Turkish side Ankaragucu. He has scored 22 goals in 72 international matches, and has been deadly at this year’s tournament, scoring 3 goals in 3 games, scoring a brace against Italy in the process. If Slovakia get a chance in the game, expect Vittek to be clinical in his finishing.


As Slovakia have shown, they are capable of causing an upset, but the Netherlands are no mugs so far at this tournament and more importantly haven’t started their most impressive player; Arjen Robben, in any of the matches. With this in mind I can’t look past Bert Van Marwijk’s men winning 3-1.

Brazil vs Chile



A squad that came to South Africa, seemingly under the radar, without any real major expectations or pressure on them, which for me is a big mistake as they are the genuine contenders to win the World Cup. Brazil coach Dunga left star players Ronaldinho, Pato and Adriano at home while the likes of Kleberson returning, while Grafite and Ramires both appear at their first World Cup; fresh blood to freshen up the Brazilian side. This campaign has started ominously for the competition with Brazil topping the “group of death” ahead thanks to wins over Ivory Coast and North Korea, and a draw with Portugal.

Key Man

Luis Fabiano

The striker is a definitely as his peak right now, and has been for the past few years, and is the newly established Brazil number 9. He has 27 goals in 41 appearances for Brazil, and scored 2 goals in all 3 group games. Another clinical striker in the tournament, with power and pace, and has the benfifit of playing with creative players such as Kaka, Robinho, Maicon and Elano.



Chile are a personal favourite of mine, and one of the most attacking teams in the tournament, coach Marco Bielsa is one of the best and most respected managers in South America and has began receiving the plaudits for his team performances. A poor performance against Spain aside, Chile beat Honduras 1-0 and Switzerland 1-0 to book their place in the second round.

Key Man

Alexis Sanchez

The Udinese winger has already caught the eye of many football fans with his performances in South Africa, but has been causing a stir for quite a while now. He has 11 goals in 32 caps and is expected to be Brazil’s main threat when the two meet.


In the South American qualifying campaign, Brazil and Chile met twice; with the five time World Champions winning 4-2 and 3-0 respectively. The Chile side attacking they may be, lost their head in the match against Spain and threw away any chance of a victory with some poor decision and sill bookings. For this reason, I cannot look past a Brazil victory. They met in the 1998 World Cup at the same stage, and the Brazil side won that day with two goals apiece from Ronaldo and Cesar Sampaio consigned Chile to a 4-1 defeat.

Stay tuned for Part Three

Real Talk Football

No comments:

Post a Comment