The soccer world championships are played every four years and bring together the best players and footballing nations. This summer’s tournament is being played in Brazil and for the first time could see a European nation win the competition in South America. England would not be every person’s first choice but they have the squad to outperform their current odds with asianconnect88.
Association football was invented in England and is now played in just about every country in the world. There are more countries in the governing body than the United Nations. England won the tournament in 1966 when playing at home but have never won the World Cup overseas. They reached the semi-finals in Italy in 1990 but have never progressed as far in a tournament in South America.
In the past England have been given relatively easy fixtures in the group stages and underperformed. This summer they will have to be at their best in the first match against Italy which could decide which of the teams will qualify from the group. Subsequent matches with Uruguay and Costa Rico could be irrelevant if England lost to Italy.
The fixture is being played in Manaus, in the tropical desert. The match starts in the evening but heat and humidity will be factors. However, Italy will face the same challenges and are more likely to play a slow passing game. England must take the initiative in the first half by playing to their strengths.
England are most effective when they play quick and direct football, rather than sitting back and letting their opponents take control. The game with Italy could easily develop into a cagey affair and both sides would probably accept a 0-0 draw. However, if England are positive and win the match they would be in a strong position to win the group which would then be between them and Uruguay.
The top two teams qualify for the elimination rounds from each of the eight sections. If progressing England would have a winnable match in the next round which would set up a huge match against Brazil in the quarter finals. Beating the hosts is a massive ask but it would then bring England to the last four and a great chance to win the World Cup for just the second time.
The England coach, Roy Hodgson, has a reputation for being cautious but he is shrewd enough to know being forward thinking is the best policy against Italy. England had to win two matches at home to qualify for the World Cup and they got the results by playing positively and to their attacking strengths.
The midfield area will be important in the match with Italy and Ross Barkley could be a key influence if selected. At aged 20 and extremely fit he will be able to cope with the conditions in Manaus better than most. A typical performance for even just the first hour could see England lead Italy and in winning the match they would be set up for a great tournament in Brazil.