HomeAfrica-NewsWorld Cup 2022: What's the deal in Group E?

World Cup 2022: What’s the deal in Group E?

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The FIFA World Cup brings with it the possibility of surprises, unforeseeable circumstances and the gnashing of teeth of controversy. It also brings the contenders to a table that has often allowed only European and South American nations as diners. the mail and guardian will analyze each group before the competition begins to determine who could be the nation that replaces France as world champion. Group E is made up of Spain, Germany, Costa Rica and Japan.

Spain

What’s your deal?

The decline of the Spanish team has been an exhausting clock. Just a decade ago, there was no team close to Spain, but they rested on their laurels, failing to integrate young talent into the team quickly enough for them to learn from more experienced individuals.

Now, the consequences are being seen and if 34-year-old Sergio Busquets overtakes Rodri for a starting spot in their opener against Costa Rica, it will show that the Spaniards are stuck in that golden age.

But it must be said that while this team is nowhere near the one that won the World Cup in 2010, it is still a very good team that is capable of beating any team on the day.

Spain have only lost once in 2022. Coming into the tournament in this kind of form, barring any surprises, they should battle Germany to top this group.

Star player

Players like Manchester City duo Rodri and Aymeric Laporte will be crucial for Spain in defensive midfield and defense. But currently there is only one star child in Spain and that is Barcelona midfielder Pedri.

At only 20 years old, it makes it seem like it’s been around for a long time. He has the feeling of Andrés Iniesta, but faster, and it may be in this World Cup where he announces his intention to be a future Ballon d’Or.

If there’s no stage fright for Pedri, he could inspire Spain to go far in this tournament, but if he collapses under the pressure, we could see a repeat of Spain’s last two World Cup campaigns, where he exited in the knockout stages. groups in 2014 and the round of 16 stage in 2018.

Germany

What’s your deal?

Like Spain, Germany experienced a gradual decline after winning the World Cup in 2014. It also appears to be in a transition phase after Joachim Löw ended his 15-year stint as head coach in 2021.

Coming into this World Cup, they lack a finalist, but as history shows, it’s inevitable that Thomas Muller will get his name on the scoresheet multiple times.

They have players like Serge Gnabry, Leroy Sane and Kai Havertz, who can contribute goals, but a predatory number nine would have rounded out a very balanced German team.

There is no doubt that Germany will want to avoid a repeat of 2018, when they were knocked out in a group that was half as tough as this one, and they should if they maintain the technically sound football we expect of them.

Star player

The similarities between Germany and Spain continue to grow. Their star in this World Cup will also be a youngster who has the potential to be one of the best in the world.

Bayern Munich midfielder Jamal Musiala has scored 7 goals and 9 assists in 14 Bundesliga games this season. His quick feet and technical ability make him a serious threat where the opposition might have to double down on defenders.

Musiala is also one of those style players that gets the crowd going. At just 19, he could be Germany’s best chance to fight to join Brazil as a five-time World Cup winner.

Costa Rica

What’s your deal?

Costa Rica faced a group similar to this in 2014: England, Italy and Uruguay. Forecasted to be the scapegoats in their group that year, the Central American nation came out on top and won convincingly.

They also put together a run that saw them reach the quarterfinals in 2014. Beaten just once in 2022, this Costa Rican team will start the World Cup as group losers, but it only takes one soccer match to change their minds. of all.

If they can channel their spirit from 2014, they could cause trouble for all three teams in this group.

Star player

PSG goalkeeper Keylor Navas will need to get back to his best form, just as he was during that incredible run in 2014. Over the years, he has produced exceptional performances that have seen him help Real Madrid win the Champions League and PSG to the French league. .

In a group like this, the athletic and agile performance of the goalkeeper could be key to show how badly Costa Rica wants to get out of the group.

Japan

What’s your deal?

Making their seventh consecutive World Cup appearance, Japan seem to have a tendency where they make it to the knockout round and then fail to make it out of the group at the next tournament. If they continue like this, they will not leave the group this year.

They come into the tournament having lost just twice in their last 14 caps and usually present a challenge to any team they face. The Japanese line up in a 4231 formation, but don’t sit by and wait for the opposition to close in on them. They are willing to push forward at any time and have accurate and technically efficient players in their attack.

They will be hoping for a good result in their opener against Germany and after being knocked out by South Korea in 2018, Germany will be wary of Japan’s strengths.

Star player

While the Japanese like to play attacking football, their star player can be found on defense. The diversity of Arsenal’s Takehiro Tomiyasu allows him to play anywhere in defence. Not too long ago, he bagged Mohamed Salah in the Premier League. This means he is capable of holding off the best attackers in the world in his day, and if Japan are to move forward and play attacking football, Tomiyasu’s contribution to defense will be key to making sure they are not caught from behind. .

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