Brazil will get ready for yet another World Cup battle, with six teams battling for three places in the knockout stages.
Brazil will get ready for yet another World Cup battle, with six teams battling for three places in the knockout stages. Group F teams play in the two early fixtures, with Group E following later. With every game vital, we preview the four games that would be played tonight and what result it could deliver. Take a look:
France vs. Ecuador
Expected Result – France to sneak a win
In stark contrast of their 2010 sojourn, when the players went on strike at their training ground, this year’s World Cup could hardly be going good for France. After scoring eight times in two victories, a draw with Ecuador would see the ‘Les Bleus’ qualify for the Round of 16 and could even afford a defeat, given their current goal difference of plus 6. With three goals so far, France striker Karim Benzema has already made his point at this tourney.
Honduras vs. Switzerland
Expected Result – Swiss win
After their dismal outing against the French, the key to Switzerland’s hopes is how well the players deal with the psychological blows inflicted by that 5-2 thrashing last Friday. The Swiss had lost just once in their 18 matches over the previous two years before being torn apart by their neighbours. After two straight defeats, Honduras would have to pull off a major upset by beating Switzerland – and still need help from France, which would have to defeat Ecuador in the other Group E game – to go through.
Argentina vs. Nigeria
Expected Result – Argentina’s victory guaranteed
Lionel Messi’s strike in the dying minutes against Iran all but ensured Argentina’s spot in the last 16 and now require a mere point against Nigeria to finish top. On the other hand, African giants Nigeria, which lost 1-0 to Argentina in the group stage four years ago, will have to be at their level best in what should be the toughest test yet at the tournament.
Iran vs. Bosnia –Herzegovina
Expected Result – Draw
Iran was unlucky to lose to Argentina in their previous group game, with Messi’s superb goal coming in injury time. Now Iran needs to beat an already-eliminated Bosnia-Herzegovina and must hope the luck goes its way this time with Nigeria losing to Argentina in Porto Alegre.
Another thrilling finale on our hands, today’s action promises to be yet another goal-fest!