Monday, May 17, 2010

World Cup - South Africa

A host country has never failed to advance out of the group stage in the World Cup. The home crowds are going to be absolutely insane for this tournament.

The defense for this team is a bit unpredictable, but if Aaron Mokoena comes up big he can really marshall the defense and at least keep them from losing control of matches. They are lucky in that the other countries in this group struggle to score goals.

The Bafana Bafana have enough attacking talent in Benni McCarthy and Steven Peinaar that they will create some chances. If McCarthy finds some scoring form they could make a run similar to South Korea in 2002, when a combination of luck and being lifted by the crowd carried them all the way to the semi-final.

I don't think South Africa will do as well as the last few hosts results-wise, because if they get out of the group in the second position and into the knockout stage, they will probably be facing a powerhouse in Argentina. But, if South Africa manage to win what could be a very open group, they will face an extremely winnable match against South Korea, Nigeria, or Greece.

Even if they get knocked out early, the Bafana Bafana matches will be must see events, and I am looking forward to the joyous revelry of their supporters as much, if not more, than the actual football.

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