World Cup 2014: Group D Preview

Teams: England, Italy, Uruguay, Costa Rica

Schedule

14 June 2014

Uruguay v Costa Rica, Estadio Castelao, Fortaleza

14 June 2014

England v Italy, Arena Amazonia, Manaus

19 June 2014

Uruguay v England , Arena de Sao Paulo, Sao Paulo

20 June 2014

Italy v Costa Rica, Arena Pernambuco, Recife

24 June 2014

Italy v Uruguay, Arena das Dunas, Natal

24 June 2014

Costa Rica v England, Estadio Mineirao, Belo Horizonte

 

Uruguay

Coach: Oscar Tabarez

Captain: Diego Lugano

Uruguay is considered the dark horses in their group. The inter flowing football between Suarez and Cavani is crucial and could prove dangerous for other teams. However, midfield still remains susceptible to weakness. The key player and their star is Luis Suarez after a great season with Liverpool, he looks in great touch currently.

Costa Rica

Coach: Jorge Luis Pinto

Captain: Bryan Ruiz

Los Ticos finished in second place in the CONCACAF hexagonal stage and in doing so progressed to Brazil with relative ease. They mainly have variations around the three midfielders, with the team flexible in whether they play a flat-back five or three center-backs and a pair of wingbacks. If the elusive Bryan Ruiz and dynamic Joel Campbell are at their best, they could shock a few. In Keylor Navas, they also have one of the most underrated goalkeepers in La Liga. In this Costa Rica team, Ruiz takes on the brunt of the creative responsibility. He typically operates from the right-hand-side of a four man midfield but is given license to drift

England

Captain: Steven Gerrard

Coach: Roy Hodgson

Young players are coming in, and with that has come an acceptance that England isn’t really major contenders for the title. But they are by no means the no-hopers many in the English media make them out to be. There is pace, power and a little bit of genius in this team. The Key player would be Rooney, after enjoying a decent season at Old Trafford. It will be interesting to see how he shapes himself after what has been almost 10 years since he made the debut at 2004 Euro Cup.

Italy

Manager: Cesare Prandellis

Coach: Gianluigi Buffon

After qualifying, Italy has qualified for every world cup since 1962.The great advantage of majority players coming from Juventus means that, there will be great cohesiveness amongst the players, especially the midfield and the defense. The key player would be Andrea Pirlo. Pirlo famous for his expert passing, vision and pin point ability.

 

Predictions:

England looks really strong with a young team with good strikers and midfield, but defense remains a cause of concern. Italy has always been unpredicatable,so no analysis into their current form can judge them.Uruguay would be hoping against hope for Suarez to be fully fit, although likes of Cavani would mean a lot.Costa Rica remain a complete outsider, but with the likes of Joel Campbell and Ruiz one can’t rule them out.

– Meet Chhagani [Meet is a sports analyst for the Football Galaxy at Sportz Cosmos. You can reach him at the gmail id: sportzcosmos]

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