What’s going on people we have less than 24 hours until the kick off for the world cup and I have my World Cup 2018 Predictions (better late than never) for you and a brief little explanation why I am right… Which is what I always am. Tomorrow morning stay tuned as Two Foot Talk will be joined by Zack Steffen to hear his World Cup predictions but for now it is my time to shine. So HERE WE GO.
Group A: This group was kind of easy for me probably the worst group in the whole tournament but he its Russia did we expect them not to try and cheat their way into winning how do you think they got to host in the first place? But anyways we have Uruguay, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and Russia. Uruguay led by Cavani, Suarez, Godin, and Jimenez are a bit of a dark horse for the tournament I have them easily winning the group but not seeing much light after that I think at most they make it to the quarterfinals if they are lucky, but they are a national team that everyone kind of knows their role and they really use their star power. In second for the group I have the Pharaohs. Shoutout Weso first of all the first Egyptian I met I think in a group as soft as this one second place is up for grabs, but I am heavily relying on Salah to get his team going. Even with injury the threat of Salah I think can scare the two little guys of the group Saudi Arabia and Russia. I then have Saudi Arabia taking third cause I am a petty man and I hope Russia fails to even win a game. But that is Group A.
Group B: We have Spain, Portugal, Iran, and Morocco. Another easy group if you ask me but others seem to think Portugal will crash out, and Spain just fired their head coach 48 hours before they play Portugal after accepting the Madrid job. Sooo this group may have gotten more interesting. I am still sticking with my Spaniards to win the entire group that team is too deep, too talented, just a nice mixture of generation players, and they have the world cup winners to help carry them through the rough spots. In my opinion I don’t think the coach for Spain even really matters that much BUT, I am hoping Zidane takes over for the world cup to add to his STACKED resume. After Spain I have Portugal coming in second, STRICTLY because they have Cristiano Ronaldo. If you think Ronaldo won’t dominate little teams like Morocco and Iran with at least assists if not bags of goals, then you may be a bit crazy. They have an exceptional amount of young talent and an aging back line but we will call that “experience”. Next I have Iran coming in third throughout the qualifiers they seemed like a team that could just come together and put it some good performances and to me they are in a race for third place against Morocco.
Group C: We have France, Peru, Denmark, and Australia. Unlike my Two Foot Talk counter part Tyler Bond I have no hope for Australia I have them coming in dead last and I want to apologize to Ty and Tim Cahill but thats how it goes. I have France dominating the group another team just loaded with talent even with the shit manager they should be able to cruise through the group. My surprise pick for this is Peru who just got their captain back Paolo Guerrero. He is their captain, their best player, and the heart of the team. I think they have a great story for the world cup and I am looking forward to seeing them put in some great team performances. Third place I have the place where Christian Eriksen was born, and thats pretty much what Denmark is… The Eriksen show they have some other players that could make an impact, but if Eriksen drops any part of his game the team will no doubt suffer. Then finally in last we have Australia and I apologize again maybe you will surprise us.
Quick look where we are at so far in my choices…
Group D: We have Argentina, Croatia, Nigeria, and Iceland. Now this is being called the group of death apparently but I don’t really agree I think Nigeria and Iceland could possibly get second place but they aren’t really strong enough to make this a group of death. First things first I think Argentina will handle business in this group and take first place, even with their lack of defense the attack is too strong for any of these other teams to manage. Second place we have another team that is loaded in the midfield but lacking in other areas with Croatia. I believe Croatia will take 2nd place, the midfield is just too much to handle, Modric Rakitic, Perisic, Kovacic, and then Manduzic up top! whats not to love about that? Third I have Nigeria with the hottest jersey of the tournament, hoping the ex city boy Inheanacho gets some good looks. Then finally the team that stole everyones hearts… Iceland I have them in last place, but if you do not have a team to root for definitely check them out, led by Sigurdsson the free kick master, they are a team that play with all the heart, their fans love them, they leave it all out on the field, but sadly they just don’t have as much talent as everyone else.
(Messi and all his students)
Group E: Next we have what I consider to be the group of death, Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, and Costa Rica. These are all teams who have a couple stars and then a ton of role players that always seem to come together as a country. I mean besides Brazil who will dominate this group because, well they are Brazil and a favorite to win the tourney, absolutely loaded roster, good coach, good mix of youth and experience, no reason Brazil shouldn’t have high hopes. My second place for this group may shock you but I actually chose Serbia, this is my dark horse I do not think they will go on to win the entire thing per say but I think you should put some RESPEK on their name. Their midfield is loaded with Matic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, Tadic, Adem Ljajic, plus Kolarov on free kicks, Ivanovic in the back who actually hit a banger last week, just a lot of players to look out for and I think the scary ass Serbians will surprise some people. Third place for the group I have Switzerland, I mean Shaqiri is a different class when he plays for his country and I think we will be seeing a lot of him, Granit Xhaka who hopefully wakes up from his Arsenal persona, and of course one of my favorite backs on all time Lichtsteiner. Then in last place I have Costa Rica, made of Bryan Ruiz bless that old mans heart, and Keylor Navas my two players to watch for that team, but after watching them against Belgium I don’t think their defense has the talent, or confidence to keep them in contention for advancing. Granted Keylor Navas will do his thing but a goalie can only do so much.(Especially when you are used to Sergio Ramos in front of you)
Group F: This was another contender for a possible group of death but then Sweden didn’t bring Zlatan and they were pretty much dead to me… Anyways this group we have Germany, Mexico, Sweden, and Korea Republic. I thought these were easy choices but, people like to argue so in first place I have the Germans the defending champs, they are absolutely stacked and have arguably the best manager in the international management business I don’t really even see them dropping a point. Then in second place representing North America!……… Mexico my man Chicharito in what is most likely his last world cup, he is the hope for that country whether he is playing for a big club or not, they love him, we love him, he’s the man. I have Mexico coming in second strictly talent wise I don’t think Sweden or Korea are at the same level, but Mexico have their hard luck in the last few world cups so who knows Sweden could over take them, but I have Sweden in 3rd place. Sweden with no Zlatan is like a Sandwich with no cheese, yeah you can still eat it, but why the fu*k WOULD’NT YOU PUT CHEESE ON YOUR SANDWICH IS DELICIOUS. Anyways Sweden have Forsberg who is very talented and the only man besides Zlatan to win a Swedish player of the year in the last decade. Finally we have Korea they have Sonn from Spurs and Sung Yung Ki from Swansea, but I just don’t see them making a real mark in the group with the other names.
Then a quick look at all the group stages we have gotten through.
Group G: We have Belgium, England, Panama, and Tunisia. This is where the US probably would have fell and it is an easy choice either way.(RIP USA FANS) I have Belgium easily winning the group and England falling in right behind them. They are two teams that could easily bottle games this tournament, but as for the group stages Panama and Tunisia don’t have anywhere near the fire power to handle them. I have Panama finishing third and then Tunisia behind them. (How the fuck did Tunisia get in the world cup but USA, Italy, Chile, and the Netherlands didnt…)
Group H: This is another potential group of death I wouldn’t say it is but the argument is out there. We have Colombia, Japan, Senegal, and Poland. Now this was a tricky one for me because I do love Lewandowski but I just don’t think he will be able to get it done all by himself. I actually chose Colombia to win the whole thing being easily the strongest team in my mind with James taking over, then Japan with Kagawa holding it down, then Poland coming in third and Senegal is last. Now Senegal does actually have a decent side and they play well together so this group could go anywhere to be honest. Colombia definitely advance though and I will just bite the bullet and ride it out with Japan.
This is the final look at the group stages for my choices.
ON TO THE KNOCK OUTS PEOPLE
So the round of 16 for my choices, First matchup is…
Portugal vs. Uruguay. This is a straight goal scorers match. We have Cavani & Suarez vs Cristiano Ronaldo. Now I think Ronaldo has more options playmaker wise with both Silvas, Martins, and Queresma (my favorite Portugese player). But the defense and chemistry from the Uruguay back line could be a problem, especially since they know Ronaldo very well, and on the flip side the Portugese back line is definitely not as strong. But I have to give it to Portugal in the end I think the attacking options and finishing ability from Ronaldo gives them the edge.
Next we have France vs. Croatia and although I think it will be a great game, in no way, shape, or form do I see Croatias defense able to handle the pace and ability of the French attack, not to mention the straight anchors in the back of Umtiti and Varane. Croatia even may have the odds against them in the midfield with Rakitic, and Modric facing off against Pogba, Kante, and Matuidi. The depth of France also gives them the advantage because as soon as one of the wingers flying down the pitch get tired, they have more coming off the bench, same with the central mids. I have France winning this one, and I think it may be a statement game for them and end up being a blow out.
Brazil vs. Mexico I mean like I said before theres not even a need to name all the talent Brazil has, and unfortunately for Mexico they do not matchup. The comparisons would just be a bit ignorant so I don’t think it is necessary and for Brazil to lose this game it would have to be a massive flop from Brazil, and an amazing performance from Ochoa in net for Mexico. But that’s probably not happening I have Brazil by a HUNNIT.
Then Belgium vs Japan, now I thought it was a bold moving picking Japan before getting out of the group, so yes I do think Kevin DeBruyne and company are going to have a field day with Japan. Lukaku’s scoring record with Belgium is kind of insane right now with 19 goals in the last 18 matches, and not a single loss…… I mean how hard is it when you have Hazard, KDB, Mertens, and Carrasco feeding you then ball? But I think Belgium are going to cruise into the next round and make their manager look good even though he is a moron. #FreeRadja
Next we have Spain vs. Egypt… The matchup all Liverpool fans did but really didn’t want to see. IF Egypt make it out of the group, and if Salah is healthy, they are still going to lose to Spain. I am one of the few people that don’t think the firing of the Spanish manager is going to make that big of a difference. But that could be my Spanish bias talking and the fact I have them winning the whole thing. Anyways Egypt have Salah, Spain has DeGea, Ramos, Pique, Alba, Carvajal, Isco, Silva, Thiago, Iniesta, and on and on and on. Easily one of the deepest teams in the tournament and Egypt I am sorry but Salah can’t save you here.
This is just what the match ups look like so far in my bracket…. on to the rest
Next we have Argentina vs. Peru, and poor Peru they don’t deserve this. My man Messi even in my bracket makes out with a good draw I don’t know how he does it but Peru I am pulling for you but I think Argentina takes this. Just the flat out attacking power in the midfield and strikers Argentina has is going to be too much for Peru. Dimaria, Dybala, Messi, Aguero, and Higuain (The Choke Artist) I believe are just a bit too much fire power for Peru to handle. Although I love an underdog I do not see Peru making it past the first round of knockouts if they make it out of the group.
Next Germany vs. Serbia. See this is why I had them as a dark horse but they can’t win. Because at some point they see Germany and there are very few teams I can see even putting a chink in Germany’s armor. Germany have everything to be great, players, experience, coach, depth, and a title to defend. Serbia I love you all too but just expect a quick ass whooping by the Germans.
Finally we have Colombia vs. England and I think this would be one hell of a match. Colombia is one of those South American teams that always comes together and balls the Fu** out when it comes to international competition. Also they have James yeah the golden booty winner. But I think England has the more talented side, but I am not going to hype them up like an EPL fan would do although I think they will stick it out and beat Colombia. I don’t think defensively they have an answer for the Dele, Sterling, Kane combo. ALSO NEVER FORGET JAMIE MOTHERFU**IN VARDY IS ON THE SQUAD. You know Jamie Vardy is always down to party and he scores when he wants. Colombia have the Barcelona man that I think everyone should be on the watch for at center back Yerry Mina he will give Kane a run for his money.
Okay we are getting there people the quarter finals (anyone just get chills reading that I got chills thinking about a world cup quarter final a day before the competition starts)
First we have Portugal vs. France a rematch of the Euro final. I am hoping Ronaldo makes it through this whole game against France, but I think France are the much more talented team, and with the right plan to shut down Ronaldo(which they are capable of) I think France wins this game a little more easily than people want to believe. With Varane and Umtiti two people very familiar with Ronaldo I think they have the advantage and with the old ass backline Portugal has I do not see them handling the likes of Mbappe, Dembele, or Griezmann. Not to mention the stacked midfield France is holding. Sorry Portugal, its Frances time now.
Next we have Brazil vs. Belgium, I think this will come down to Belgium just having a shit manager that won’t know what to do when he plays this ridiculous Brazil team. They have the talent to compete with Brazil but I don’t think Roberto will be able to figure it out. If they play three in the back against Brazil I believe they will be punished, and rely heavily on the counter attack. So pretty much if they don’t get some magic, or they can’t figure out the counter attack, Brazil will be able to put them away with not too much trouble. I am taking Brazil here.
Next Spain vs. Argentina, I can not tell you how excited I am to see this possible matchup. Messi versus all his homies, the guy has lived in Spain longer than Argentina he is pretty much a Spainiard now. It’s kind of like when you transfer schools and see all your friends on the other team laughing about to beat the shit out of you on the pitch. I think once again Spain is too deep, they have dealt with Messi before half of them practice with him. They know what the offense is capable of and they know what the defense lacks. I am taking Spain once again to move forward.
(Little Reminder ^^^)
Germany vs. England, I feel like this is a classic matchup but back in like the 60’s because now a days Germany are just going to absolutely dominate England. Thats not me saying England won’t have some looks I mean they have Harry Kane who will shoot from wherever but, Germany have the size, speed, depth, experience, yada yada yada Germany is really Fu**in good. They have Hummels and Boateng to handle Kane, Kimmich to handle Sterling, and almost too many midfielders to handle anyone else that can be a problem. Also we haven’t talked about how Mueller is coming out of hibernation again to start shi*ing on everyone in the World Cup again to break Klose’s record. I am taking the Germans.
(No one cared who I was before I put on the mask…)
On to the Semi Finals…..
Brazil vs. France…. This is just another dream match for me to see, two loaded teams, fast pace, great mix of youth and experience, I do think Brazil have the better manager, and the better star player. I think the difference maker here is Neymar, The outside backs of France are going to be tortured by Neymar, and with the pace and finishing ability from well… every other Brazilian on the team I don’t think France has what it takes to hold off Brazil. Lloris is going to have to show more than he did against the United States for me after letting in an easy goal, because if you thought the US was fast and young.. you haven’t seen sh** yet. I am taking Brazil to move on to the final in possibly one of the best matches of the tournament.
Next what everyone has been waiting for past champions vs past champions, the teams that fight in Europe almost every year Spain and Germany. Germany vs Spain, this is a total toss up I think Germany have the better manager, backlines are about equal to me I think Spain has a bit of an edge with the outside backs (Kimmich is still the best sorry). The midfield is a total toss up pretty much depends which style you like better I prefer Tika Taka. Then uptop both teams are a little thin compared to usualy but Timo Werner and Diego Costa are two very good strikers and this is going to end up being a World Cup classic match (if I am correct). And this is a game you just can’t predict and I am definitely bias for Spain so I can’t not pick them I think the Germans come up short and I will even go as far to say that Marco Asensio will score a goal strictly cause he always scores on Germans. I am taking Spain to the final.
So here it is the Young Leg Final for the 2018 World Cup what a ride am I right?
Spain vs. Brazil. GAHHDAMNN what another classic match this would be two giants in the international football world.
After Spain’s nightmare last year I think they can only respond to it with a World Cup victory, this is another game where they all end up matching up pretty well. I think Brazil has the stronger attack and depth in attack, and the different combos they could use between Neymar, Willian, Jesus, Firmino, and Costa. I am giving the midfield to Spain because they have just straight world class midfielders to choose from I mean Silva, Isco, Iniesta, Thiago, Saul, Koke, Busquets. Then the backline I think matchup almost perfectly. Marcelo to Alba, Ramos to Silva, Pique to Miranda, the only one that is an advantage is Carvajal miles and miles better than Danilo, but he is injured so lets say Azpilicueta to Danilo (still in Spain’s favor Danilo you are trash). Then the goalkeepers you have David DeGea arguably the best goalkeeper in the world and the 100 million dollar man Alisson. This is another toss up but I am once again (going with my bias) and I am taking Spain even without a manager to raise the World Cup once again.
These are all my opinions and what the fu** do I know. ALMOST EVERYTHING I AM NEVER WRONG. But if you feel I am come chat some shit on Twitter @shopaaj I will be waiting for you.