World Cup Quarter-Finals Preview
The quarter-finals are here, and the World Cup is within touching distance for eight teams.
July 4th, 2014
Brazil, Columbia, Holland, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Argentina and Belgium are each three matches away from World Cup glory. It’s a simple idea for each team; win the next three matches and they will be presented with the highest honour in international football: the World Cup. This is easier said than done, of course, as each country will be facing opponents who have also fought hard throughout the tournament to get there. So, with the quarter-finals kicking off tonight, here is a preview of what I think will happen and who will come out on top.
Brazil vs Columbia
This, I believe, will be the most exciting fixture of the quarter-finals. I can see James Rodriguez wanting to further prove himself after his spectacular performance against Uruguay; however I think Hulk and Neymar will be very important for Brazil. Both teams are used to the climate, therefore there will be no available weather-related excuses.
Columbia have played some of the most organised and successful football of the tournament and they are the underdogs with nothing to lose, whereas Brazil are under a lot of pressure to win the whole thing – but have relied on moments of brilliance to see them through. They will have to take it up a gear if they are to beat a team who really have nothing to lose.
Holland vs Costa Rica
Costa Rica have impressed so far and, similarly to Columbia, have the benefit of being international underdogs against Holland. Costa Rica will be looking for any weakness in Holland’s side and hoping that the conditions get to the Dutch. Holland on the other hand have a number of top quality experienced players who have never succeeded on the international stage. Arjen Robben, Robin Van Persie and Wesley Sneijder will all be hungry to advance as this could potentially be their last chance at World Cup glory.
France vs Germany
I think this will be the closest tie. France have been impressive, and Germany have had a good but not amazing campaign. I imagine both teams will be wary of each other and cautious not to slip up at any part of the match. For some reason I think Germany will step it up against the French, and I can see the tie being a hard-fought encounter with the Germans ultimately coming out on top.
Argentina vs Belgium
Lionel Messi has had a great tournament so far, and really has been the stand-out star for Argentina but Belgium are a side that must be taken seriously. I think this game will be one separated by a moment of brilliance from either side. Be it Messi, Lukaku, Di Maria or Hazard, I think it’s a stage that is begging for someone to step up and produce a moment of World Cup magic.