The 2014 World Cup is fast approaching. Managers are busy doing their homework and potential squad additions, the stadiums are (hopefully close to being) ready to host the tournament and friendlies are being organised for vital last minute tournament preparation.
World Cup’s have often found themselves under the over bearing quality of South American teams. Whether it is Uruguay, who won the very first tournament over 70 years, or the Brazilians and their samba style, which has helped them earn five tournament victories, the South Americans usually set the stage alight. It is becoming increasingly likely that the current crop of teams from that continent will rise to prominence over the European sides once more when the tournament rolls around this summer.
South American sides now occupy four of the top ten spots in FIFA’s world rankings, and there are several dark horse candidates for tournament success this summer, such as Columbia and Chile, who have the explosive duo of Alexis Sanchez and Arturo Vidal in their ranks.
The tournament’s location has many of the managers arriving in Rio this summer taking an unusual South American-sided view on the World Cup this summer. USA manager Jurgen Klinsmann spoke to ESPNFC.com recently: “I call this tournament the ‘World Cup of Patience. Because of the Brazilian style of life, there will be a lot of surprises waiting. It’s not going to be a perfect World Cup for anybody.”
Patience, aided by the climate difference, will no doubt play into the South American’s hands and Brazil’s high temperatures has been a boiling topic amongst fans, pundits and players alike since the Samba outfit won the bid to host the tournament back in 2007. World cup free bet sites are unanimously adamant that the weather will benefit the South American sides and have even placed the Brazilians as favourites, priced at around 4-1.
The tournament could therefore come down to which nation has the most in-form players at the time of each fixture. Radamel Falcao’s injury is no doubt a major blow to Columbia’s World Cup hopes, but Uruguay can ease their fears of the tough Group draw in the knowledge they have Edison Cavani and Luis Suarez to call on, while it would be preposterous to forget Lionel Messi and the depth in the Argentinian side.
The atmosphere in Brazil is likely to be unprecedented and it could be then that we see Neymar and his Samba compatriots seal a home win, which would be far from a shock given the demolition of European giants and reigning World Champions’ Spain in the Confederations Cup last summer.
Brazil have undergone somewhat of a transitional period but are now re-emerging to prominence and can be mentioned in the same breath as Germany and Spain.
Luis Felipe Scolari will hope to upset Fernando Torres and co when they return to Brazil this summer and with the likes of Oscar, Thiago Silva and Hulk in their squad it may be an easier ask than first thought given the fact that South American World Cups usually bring with them South American victors. It therefore seems unlikely this year will break the trend of South American dominance on home soil.
Who do you have as the favorites in this the 2014 World Cup? Let us know in the comments!
Written by Michael Georgiou