This post was contributed by Hayes. Make sure you follow him on twitter.
The World Cup is the greatest sporting event in existence and it finally kicks off tomorrow morning with two Group A games on the schedule. South Africa, Mexico, France and Uruguay all make up a group that can be won by the team who wants it the most. If you ask me the two teams out of this group I see advancing are Mexico and Uruguay, but I’m getting ahead of myself. Let’s start with my predictions on the outcomes of tomorrow morning’s games.
South Africa vs Mexico
South Africa’s one of those countries where you don’t know what you’re going to see when they step onto the field. Currently they’re on a twelve game winning streak. Mexico has an exciting squad but they don’t always show up either. They did however show up against defending champions Italy and get a win in recent friendly. The last time these teams faced off, Mexico lost. This time around I can only see a win for Mexico or a draw at least.
Yes, I don’t see the host team winning. For South Africa to win this game means they’re changing the entire outcome of the group. Many analysts don’t see it the way I do, but I’m betting against the home team. Their home-field advantage would be more beneficial if it translated to the field. Then I could see them winning the group. That would be interesting. South African mid-fielder Steven Pienaar is supposed to be the difference maker. He’s got striker Katlego Mphela and Captain Aaron Mokoena from Portsmouth, to help him out. The Mexican side has far more players who play in the best leagues around the world. Rafael Marquez who plays for Barcelona and Arsenal’s Carlos Vela will be keeping the host country on their heels. I see Mexico winning 3 to 1 over South Africa.
France vs Uruguay
France is due for some sort of chaotic catastrophic event, after qualifying for this World Cup on a handball. Then FIFA added insult to injury by giving them one of the easiest groups. Uruguay isn’t a big time threat by any means, but they are opportunistic enough to steal a win here if they show up, play smart and play defense. If they win, I can totally see them advancing. My two players to watch are Hugo Lloris, the young French goalkeeper and Luis Suarez, the star striker for Uruguay. Expect Uruguay to be aggressive against a French squad not trying to win, but looking simply not to lose. Uruguay wins 1-0.
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