World Cup: SBI's Group G Preview

World Cup: SBI's Group G Preview

World Cup 2010

World Cup: SBI's Group G Preview

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By ADAM SERRANO

The Group of Death always brings a great deal of excitement to the World Cup, but this year’s addition may be the most anticipated Group of Death ever. 

Brazil is once again one of the favorites to go the distance and win their sixth World Cup title, but this isn’t your father’s seleção as this team is based on defense with a lethal counterattacking style. A box to box defense featuring Maicon will be vital in delivering service to the Brazilians trio of attackers, Luis Fabiano, Kaka and Robinho. 

The Ivory Coast is perhaps the most talented team that Africa has ever brought to the World Cup with a host of international stars that includes, but is not limited to brothers Toure, Yaya and Kolo as well as talented attacker Salomon Kalou. The fate of Les Éléphants will ultimately be on the shoulders of their talismanic forward Didier Drogba who is currently recovering from a fractured arm, but looks to be ready for the group stages.

Portugal will rely on their star Cristiano Ronaldo, but the 2006 semifinalists will be eager to prove that they are not a one man team. Ronaldo is the star of Portugal, but the rest of their cast must step up if they are to advance. Head Coach Carlos Queiroz needs to get the most out of veteran playmakers Deco and Simao if Portugal is going to advance from the Group of Death. 

North Korea is the wildcard of the group with a highly disciplined back line that did not concede a goal in the last six games of World Cup qualifying. The North Koreans bring one of the youngest squads to South Africa, but they are led by forwards Hong Yong-Jo and “the People’s Wayne Rooney” Jong Tae-Se who need to provide offense for the Chollima to cause some havoc in the group.

Here is SBI’s Take on Group G:


WORLD CUP GROUP G

Top Players To Watch

Kaka, Brazil

Luis Fabiano, Brazil

Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal

Didier Drogba, Ivory Coast

Romaric, Ivory Coast

Hong Yong-Jo, North Korea

Young Players To Watch

Ramires, Brazil

Gervinho, Ivory Coast

Fabio Coentrão, Portugal

Ri Jun-Il, North Korea

SBI’s Predicted Order Of Finish

1. Brazil

2. Ivory Coast

3. Portugal

4. North Korea

No longer the “Joga Bonito” Brazil of the past, Dunga’s efficient counterattack will prove too much for their Group of Death rivals as the Brazilians top the group. With Didier Drogba potentially returning for the opening match against Portugal expect the Ivorians to be immensely motivated by their star as well as the crowd and as Les Éléphants finish ahead of Portugal and North Korea.

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