BANGALORE: Since the inaugural World Cup in 1930, it’s always been South America vs Europe. The other continents have only made up the numbers - and of course the dollars. It’s been Europe 10 and South America 9 in the last 19 World Cups.
Brazil 5, Uruguay 2, Argentina 2 is the South American break-up. For Europe, it is Italy 4, Germany 3, England, France and Spain one each. Who then will claim the 20th edition that will kick-off in Brazil?
When Brazil last hosted the event way back in 1950, they lost to Uruguay in the final game. They will host the World Cup after 64 years. Will they put back the tragic memories of 1950 or will history repeat itself? The loss triggered a soccer tsunami in Brazil and then the nation went on to win the cup five times, the most by any nation.
Can they bag the ‘Hexa’, as the 20th edition is known? They have a very tough draw on the way to the final. They bump into traditional rivals Italy in the quarter-finals. The four-time champions are more than capable of stopping the Brazilians. From an all-round point of view, Brazil does not appear to have a squad which can triumph.
The Germans have built the squad with a lot of patience and precision. Argentina too has a side capable of going the distance. The two are more than worthy of being the finalists on July 13. Argentina beat Germany in 1986 and then lost to them in 1990.
It looks as though Germany can bag this cup and match Italy as the four-time champions. That is the conclusion after a careful study of the draw. Take your pick.