It's almost that time again - every 4 years people in Canada remember that they were once descended of a proud nation that plays football (err, soccer).
One's own team of course never does any wrong, and if they do, it is clearly no worse than what other teams do. That said, nationalistic pride aside, here are my predictions (taken with a grain of salt, because we don't know the groupings yet, of course):
1) Argentina (too much firepower...they might have problems with their defence though)
2) Spain (man, this is going to be a highpowered final if I am right)
3) Germany (they look strong, and always play a disciplined style. They came so close to the finals last World Cup and I have to think they are still hungry)
4) Portugal (the quadrennial disappointments might have it in them on the back of Ronaldo to make a push.)
- Sorry England, just not strong enough this year, especially with the injuries.
- We say this every time, and they always surprise, but I don't think France has enough talent. Is Ribery still in international play?
- Italy's best players are too old. The new players lack the toughness and raw skill. The defence is not what it used to be without the core of Nesta, Cannavaro, and even before that, Maldini.
- Brazil, I think, will get beaten at their own game by the high-flying Spaniards and Argentines
- I think we can expect good things (i.e. getting out of the knockout stages) by Australia, Ghana and maybe the Ivory Coast.
- Netherlands may have missed their best chance 4 years ago.