Here we are, back in Part II in our analysis of the upcoming world cup. If you a sports betting fan, you may show a glimmer of interest in our predictions about the tournament. However, bear in mind that everything here is our own opinion only, and we do not by any stretch encourage you to take punts based on what we sum up in the following lines.
Instead of calculating chances and dealing with odds, we are more excited to cover the palpable side of football action. We sift through the bundle of teams that have earned their spot in the competition and try to pick the best ones or at least those that are most likely to win.
In the following lines, we will focus on two of the utmost leaders in the pending competition – France and Brazil. While anticipating the 2018 World Cup to kick off in earnest, you may enjoy the current football action that is taking place live.
It does not take a football aficionado to tell you that Brazil is one of the world’s most accomplished World Cup teams. A team that has achieved five trophies with apparent effortlessness. The team has been faring well in the current event. With a friendly victory over Germany, the squad seems well-poised to send ripples across the football world.
Brazil also has a personal stake. They suffered a defeat to Germany four years ago, which, if not humiliating, was completely unexpected, to begin with. The team is one of the top picks of experts to win. Not surprisingly, Germany’s fate is thrown in with that of Brazil as a potential winner.
What has Brazil done so far?
Brazil has quite the record of accomplishment so far. The country managed to score 17 victories in their final World Cup qualifiers and lost only to Chile. The team has since faced enemies such as Japan, England and Russia. The team seems to be in a good shape to take on the event seriously and one up any opponent that comes their way.
Just like with Argentina’s Lionel Messi, so is Brazil concerned with the participation of Neymar. The team remains hopeful that one of the world’s leading strikers will be able to participate and take part in the World Cup.
Neymar is currently recovering from surgery. More names have been floated, including that of Gabriel Jesus and Roberto Firmino.
What comes now?
Brazil will play friendly games up against Croatia and Austria in June ahead of the World Cup race. The team will be facing perhaps what we could justly call weaker squads, which nonetheless may be dangerous enemies if underestimated.
Brazil’s team is both rich in talent but also equally prepared to execute strategical perfection if need be. With names such as Neymar, Philippe, Coutinho, Firmino, Costa, William, Brazil easily sports a constellation of athletes that are quite able to tackle the upcoming maelstrom of events.
Even without Neymar, Brazil constitutes a well-rounded team whose star players are easily comfortable playing in the limelight as they are with becoming part of the whole machinery.
France may not have the long track record of Brazil, but they are a contender nonetheless. The team only won the title when they hosted the event back in 1998. With an outstanding selection of players, France is prepared to take on the challenge. However, some have been sharing their fears that France may not perhaps be able to turn its stars into the well-oiled machinery needed to win the tournament.
What has France done so far?
France did not fare impeccably so far. In total, the team has won 7 out of 10 qualifying games. They lost surprisingly to Colombia with 3 goals going in favour of the South American team. On the plus side, the team has drubbed the 2018 World Cup host Russia with 3-1.
Drawing from what transpired in the match against Colombia, a few observations may be made for France’s capability to adapt to mid-game changes. According to Julien Laurens, a football critic:
Colombia changed their tactics at half-time and Deschamps didn’t react to it or change anything, even though he looked at his team collapsing and crumbling.
I’m not sure the 4-4-2 is strong enough to win you a World Cup. They were overrun against Colombia. A big country like Germany, Brazil or Spain, you might struggle there.
A weakness that Les Bleues’ squad will have to address if it is to wrestle the title out of the hands of arguably better-balanced teams.
What comes now?
Like most teams, France has to play its friendliness between May and June, facing off the Republic of Ireland, Italy, and the United States who have also come to contest the title. It will be interesting to sign for anything that will help us to better gauge the chances of Les Bleues of repeating their ’98 glory.