FIFA World Cup 2014 Group D Pick and Preview
The Line: Costa Rica 50/1 England 2/1 Italy 13/8 Uruguay 15/8 See the Latest Odds
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Team: Costa Rica
Star Man: Bryan Ruiz
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Manager: Jorge Pinto
Costa Rica are in one of the toughest Groups in the World Cup and although they have some decent players and a decent squad I think that frankly they will be out classed here. Watch out for young Arsenal striker Joel Campbell who will be looking to put himself in the shop window as it appears as if he will not make it at the Emirates.
Prediction for Group: Group Exit
Star Man: Wayne Rooney
Manager: Roy Hodgeson
Since winning the World Cup in 1966 England have always been supposed to repeat but with the exception of 1990 they have never come close. While this English squad is probably more of a hard working squad with less talented individuals , this could be their year to go close. Wayne Rooney is at his peak and needs to be at his best if England are to do anything in Brazil. Stephen Gerrard and Frank Lampard know this is their last attempt at International glory and with Sturridge, Sterling, Henderson, Lalallana and Shaw all experiencing their first international tournament there is a really good spread of experience and talent here. I think Roy Hodgeson will make sure that all the little things are covered, the tournament will be miticulously planned out and the players will just have to perform. Could this be the three lions year? Maybe , maybe not but I do think they will make it out of this Group so I am taking the English to qualify.
Prediction: Group Qualification
Star Man: Mario Balotelli
Manager: Cesar Prandelli
While Cesar Prandelli is coming under alot of pressure for leaving Guiseppi Rossi at home its an understandable move a Rossi is only back from injury. But to be honest I think that it is a mistake. Italy will be relying heavily on Mario Balotelli for goals and while the Milan forward has a relatively decent record for his country netting thirteen in thirty five appearances I am not sure he can do it all on his own and at 23 is very young to be shouldering that type of responsability. With Buffon, Pirlo, De Rossi and Cheillini, there is lots of experience in the Italian side but there are also lots of miles on those legs. I think that Italy may just struggle to get out of this tough Group and it may be goal difference that ends up knocking them out.
Prediction: Group Exit
Star Man: Luis Suarez
Manager: Oscar Tabarez
Player of the year in the Premier League was Luis Suarez and the brilliant Liverpool player will play alongside Edison Cavani upfront for his Country if he can shake of a niggling knee injury. But even without Suarez, Uruguay have a superb squad. Cavani, Godin, Gargano are all playing among the top clubs in Europe but not only that they have a deep passion for their country and with Forlan they have a player capable of changing things when coming on as a sub. A third place finish in South Africa in 2010 will be tough to improve on but with the tournament in South America and a huge following sure to be present for Uruguay it would be no surprise to see the sky blue in the latter stages again. I'm going to go with Uruguay to qualify here in a tough group.
Prediction: Group Qualification