World Cup 2010

SBI Poll: Which World Cup favorite is in the most trouble?


After just one match in the World Cup, some of the world's powerhouses are starting to feel some pressure.

Spain, picked by many to beat the field and win the cup, couldn't beat Switzerland and now faces an uphill climb to get out of its group.

England has goalkeeping issues and is feeling the heat after being unable to defeat the United States in their opener.

Cameroon, the highest-ranked African side in the field, looked rather domitable against Japan and now needs to overcome two strong European sides in the Netherlands and Denmark to have a chance at advancing.

Serbia, a darkhorse pick to make an extended run in the tournament, did not look sharp in its loss to Ghana and must fight for a result with all-impressive Germany to stay afloat.

Italy, the defending champions, mustered just a tie with Paraguay in its opener and now may be without starting keeper Gianluigi Buffon for the remainder of its matches. The question for you is:

Which team did you vote for? Share your thoughts below.

  • bayonetbrant

    Spain has a loss but 2 winnable games. England has a tie and 2 winnable games.

    Serbia’s got a loss and the Germans coming up. They’re screwed.


  • SeattleStan

    For all the talk about Serbia taking their group, I didn’t see it before watching their friendlies and I definitely don’t see it after the match against Ghana.


  • GW

    Serbia has 1 loss and have Germany next. Plus they’ve gotten some of the dumbest cards (next to Algeria’s) that I’ve seen in a long time. Mentally, they look pathetic.

    If they lose to Germany and the US beats Slovenia, then Subotic and Rossi will have lost this round to the US.


  • jjank

    Yup, but Spain has to play a dangerous Chilean team. But quite possibly might play better into Spain’s hands than the Swiss. They should beat Honduras easily.


  • mratfink

    Tie between Serbia and Cameroon. Both have losses and the favorites coming up (netherlands and germany) I’d say serbia is slightly worse off because australia wont get points off ghana and denmark will probably beat japan. So if cameroon beats denmark we could see three teams tied at 3 points. But yeah i think they are both done.


  • Soulshadow

    Serbia and Cameroon look to be in the most trouble. Serbia lost the game against its rival for second in the group and really has to hope Austrailia gets a result against Ghana. Cameroon has a little more hope as the Dutch and Danes could both get results against Japan. The key game for them will be the game against Denmark. If they win that, they still have a shot at the knockout stage. I’d still tip the other three to make the knockout stage, though Spain is the worst off as the Swiss now look to be a better bet to take the group, meaning the Spanish will likely face Brazil. England and Italy have a far better chance to win their groups (though I give Italy a better shot than England… still have both as favorites to do it). Italy is the better off not just because I think they better chance of winning group, but even if they don’t, they would most likely face the weaker opponent in the Round of 16, as the Germans look superior to the Dutch.


  • Joamiq

    Yep. Spain should still advance. England should still advance. Italy should still advance. Cameroon has a tough road, but I’m not sure they belong in this poll since they were less of a bet to advance from the start, so I won’t vote for them. That leaves Serbia, which looked like a strong candidate to advance at the outset, and is now looking pretty doomed.


  • Matt

    I picked Cameroon but thought the poll is unfair. Absolutely no one thinks Cameroon is a powerhouse. If you had to pick an African nation to get out of their group, Cameroon was a reasonable choice, but that’s it. Spain and Italy are genuine powerhouse teams, so while their predicaments might be more eye-raising, they also have more talent to help them get out of the group. Cameroon doesn’t.


  • sread

    Agree about Serbia and Cameroon. Serbia were a silly pick as favorite of that group. Maybe a number 2 if things worked out well in the other matches, but I think once everyone saw the Germans take the field they realized how dumb it was to think they wouldn’t finish first. Cameroon were the biggest let down so far of any African team…that is until I saw Nigeria’s pathetic performance earlier today. I see Denmark taking the 2 spot in that group.


  • Mark

    I had picked Serbia to get to the semis as my dark horse candidate. Glad I didn’t wager much money in that pool…


  • Mary

    it’s a tough one, I’d say England and Spain have decent chances.
    if you want to share your thoughts from a woman’s point of view, swing by and share your posts about the world’s greatest sporting event!



  • mikeandike

    Germany, Argentina and the Dutch look to be in best shape…

    Brazil isn’t as much of a shoo-in as I thought… they knew that Kim Jon Ils were going to pack the defense tight and tried to stretch them out rather than trying to go through the middle….

    Spain, Italy, England should still advance despite looking like crap

    Portugal and France are 50/50

    adios Srbija, Cameroon, Nigeria


  • Sean

    i voted serbia. however, i think if spain draw against chile, then they are certainly in trouble, because they will have to play the first place of brazil/ivory coast/portugal in the next round.


  • maddog36

    Spain is in the most trouble. Not to get out of the group, mind you, but that they are likely going to have to play Brazil if they do.


  • Doug

    Agreed. Serbia was a darkhorse to do what? Come in second in their group. I don’t know anyone who thought they would make it deep into the tournament.


  • KCB

    Cameroon – I didn’t consider them much of a favorite in a group with Holland, and underrated sides Japan and Denmark (I picked the Dutch and Danish to move on)

    England – They’ll make the knockout round and all will be forgotten.

    Serbia – They got thrashed 4 years ago with Montenegro on their side, and while they have improved, I still didn’t see them making it out of their group.

    Spain – This is Spain we’re talking about. They’ll bounce back and we’ll see them in the next round.

    Italy – IN TROUBLE! Old, slow, and now without one of the top 5 keepers in the world. Lucky for them they get to beat New Zealand and Slovakia on their way to the knock out stage where they will quickly face reality and exit the tournament.

    After this afternoon the correct answer will be France. Loss to Mexico and then have to face the host nation that has something to prove.


  • mratfink

    and if they beat brazil I think the next game would be the Netherlands. brutal road


  • WeatherManNX01

    If Serbia were a darkhorse, then they can’t really be a favorite.

    I was also not aware that Cameroon was a favorite (especially when compared to Ivory Coast, which everyone seemed to love).

    So that leaves the Europeans. I think Spain’s loss was somewhat fluky, and they can certainly bounce back. I’m leaning toward Italy, because I was really not impressed with the way they played. It didn’t look like the Italian squad out there (frankly, I found the match rather boring to watch). England ran into a hurdle in the USA, and anyone outside of Europe could have said it might happen. Granted, they’re having a keeper controversy, but they still field a tough squad to play against.

    Add France to that list, and they get my vote, though after their performance in Euro 2008, I’m not entirely shocked. But for a European mainstay, they’re not where they should be.


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