Sports Features of 2014-06-06

World Cup Preview

In less than a week the 2014 FIFA World Cup will kick start in Brazil with the first match between the host Brazil and Croatia and yours truly www.sports24gh.com will bring you up-to-light previews and predictions of all the groups and the matches as well. Today our focus is on groups A and B. In Group A we have: Brazil, Croatia, Cameroon and Mexico. The Verde-Amarela's is undoubtedly the most favored to head the group. Brazil is the most rich when it comes to the history of the World Cup haven't appeared twenty times and winning the trophy for an unprecedented five times (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002). Coach Luiz Felipe Scolari did not sweep aside the team that won the confederations cup for Brazil but only added some few names. This shows that his side will not lack cohesion and are a force to reckon with as far as winning the ultimate is concern. Probable Line-up: Julio Cesar Daniel Alves Marcelo David Luiz Thiago Silva Fernandinho Luiz Gustavo Willian Oscar Neymar Fred. Holding the African touch in group A is Les Lions Indomitables ( The indomitable Lions). Coach Volker Finke's team will be making their seventh appearance at the World Cup with their best performance being quarter final stage (1990). Cameroon will be led by veteran Samuel Eto'o Fils who will be making his fourth appearance as a player (1998, 2002, 2010, 2014) and is likely to start upfront with Vincent Aboubakar after Mohamadou Idrissou was surprisingly dropped from the squad. The Indomitable Lions are likely to qualify from the group alongside Brazil. Probable Line-up: Loic Feudjou Henri Bedimo Benoit Assou-Ekotto Nicolas Nkoulou Allan Nyom Alexander Song Stephane Mbia Jean Makoun Joel Matip Vincent Aboubakar Samuel Eto'o Fils. Croatia will give Cameroon a fierce fight for the second spot in group A. The Vetrani's have appeared four times at the World Cup with their best performance coming at the France 98 tournament where they came third with their striker Davor Suker picking the goal king award with six goals. Coach Niko Kovac's team visit Brazil with some known faces like Real Madrid's Luka Modric, Mario Mandzukic, Nikica Jelavic, and former Arsenal forward Edwardo da Silva but the mountain will be too tall for them to climb but Kovac can put a fast one past Cameroon. Mexico is the last team in group A and may be the whipping boys. The El-Tri have appeared a total of fourteen times in the history of the World Cup but their best performances came in 1970 and 1986 where they reached the quarter final stage. Some of the players that could make a case for Mexico in Brazil are; Hector Moreno, Hector Herrera, Javier Hernandez and Giovani Dos Santos. Group B includes: Spain, Holland, Chile and Australia. Group B will be anchored by the match between defending champions Spain and the Netherlands. The La Furia Espanola have appeared fourteen times at the World Cup and winning it four years ago in South Africa where they edged out Holland in extra time courtesy an Iniesta fiesta. Probable Line-up: Iker Casillas Cesar Azpilicueta Juanfran Sergio Ramos Xabi Alonso Sergio Busquets Andreas Iniesta Xavi Hernandez David Villa Fernando Torres The Netherlands (Oranje) have appeared nine times at the World Cup with their best performance being first runner up (1974, 1978, 2010). Probable Line-up: Jasper Cillessen Daley Blind Bruno Martins Ron Vlaar Stefan Vrij Nigel de Jong Wesley Sneijder Jordi Clasie Arjen Robben Klass Jan Huntelaar Robin van Persie. Chile and Australia are going to make up the numbers in group B.