Friday, February 6, 2009

Team Previews- The Rest of the World

Before I start

-There are teams like R.E. in the men's league, who are good players, and they should definitely be recruited to these teams. Teams absolutely need these hard workers.
-On that note, these are my favorite teams. Every year, it's guaranteed that one or more of these teams will surprise everyone and destroy the hopes of a top-ranked team(or at least really make them work for it). Who will be this year's Northern Ireland? (Others: last year's group games of Serbia vs. Germany, Italy vs. Norway, Columbia vs. England)

Greece- Greece has been a force in years past, but they'll be dealing with key player losses this year, mainly their two goalies. They'll need some quicker, younger players to keep pace with the stronger teams. They were the only team other than ROI to get points off of Laos. They've kept games close in the past, so hopefully Greece can come back strong.

Poland- Poland has never been a strong competitor, mainly lacking a strong defence. They gave up far too many goals in a weaker Pool A last year, but they always play hard. I expect Poland, like many of these lower teams, to be looking at younger players.

Canada- Canada has always been a dark horse in the tournament. Their defeat of Jamaica messed up Pool C bad. They were a decent team, but it doesn't look like the have the talent to really do major damage. Taking them lightly isn't recommended.

Austria- They had a fairly good showing last year, at least forcing Norway and Chile to look over their shoulder in their pool. However, Austria is a mediocre team. They don't have major skill advantages over many teams. Seeing as how the WCP Cup adds an extra player on the field, skill becomes less relevant. They came close to beating Chile last year.

Colombia- Colombia was a great addition to the tournament last year. They played hard every game and really made Pool D interesting. It was great to go watch their games and hope they could manage to knock a top team off. They came very close against Greece and England. Their fans were great as well. I really can't say enough about how great Colombia was for the tournament. This year, their team should be about the same, and hopefully they can be just as exciting to watch as last year.

Serbia- Serbia was written off last year, as everyone expected Ireland and Germany to roll through their fairly easy group. But after a poor start against ROI, they came back to win two and test Germany in a great game, with Germany only scoring the winning goal with a minute left. Their major defeat against ROI proved they aren't capable of consistently playing great soccer, but last year was definitely a start.

Nigeria- Nigeria fell below expectations last year after being expected to at least challenge Germany for second place in their pool. After only mustering a tie against Botswana, Nigeria has some proving to do. They were always a decent team, and it's too bad they fell to the bottom level last year. Hopefully they come back with new recruits and a chip on their shoulder.

Italy- They finished last in the weaker Pool A last year, but their games were definitely interesting. They challenged Norway very well, lost two games by scores of 2-1, and played well against Chile in a 4-1 loss. They showed they are a competitive team and the younger players they have will be more accustomed to the high level of soccer in the tournament.


Just a Spectator said...

I have been watching teams train and it is quite cool to see everything come together. Some teams have really pulled out some numbers, Scotland has a huge base of people trying out and Canada has a huge base as well,. Most of Canada have now being playing
Div III mens all season so I would expect them to be in a little bit more game shape as mosts of their players were just playing in the tournament. However if they play like they did last year, I figure them to finish last.

Anonymous said...

I hope canada is better this year. what name is their team under in div 3?

Anonymous said...

Queen City Men's

Frankitizal said...

Where is Botswana in the team previews? Are they not in the tournment this year?

beckham said...

germany i under estimated i seeen them play last night they played amazing im sorry germany for talking shit in the past lastnights performance was great to watch