World Cup = Boxing

The World Cup is upon us and 32 nations are preparing to go toe-to-toe to become the undisputed pound-for-pound king of the football world. Yes, FIFA, the governing body, is corrupt; yes, Brazil, the host nation has swallowed most of the money and is ill-prepared; and yes, the world will forget all this to gorge on the festival of sport. See, football is a lot like boxing! So what boxers do the nations eyeing the shiny gold cup match up with best?


The current number one side currently coming towards the end a of trophy-laden era as their legs begin to creak. Known for amazing technical ability, but sometimes their dominance can be said to be boring. Possibly the last run at glory for this group of players hoping to cement their legacy as one of the best ever, but failure to capture the imaginations and hearts of viewers will mean they will probably be remembered as the best of a generation, as opposed to all time.


Although Uruguay has some older players making their swansong (Forlan) this isn’t to do with age. More a win at all costs mentality, which was perfectly demonstrated at the last World Cup when star striker Suarez handballed on the goal line to ensure his side still had a chance of progressing (which they did). Known more for past glories (way way way back in the day) but have had a renaissance of late, winning the Copa America and finishing 3rd at the last World Cup. Can the old kings be top dog once more?


And not just because he is English! With relentless pace, the ability to score at any moment but lacking the ability to dominate from start to finish and very vulnerable at the back, England make for compelling viewing; you just don’t know if they will fulfill their potential or get knocked out. Either way you will have to watch.


Despite having all the natural ability to go on to be a genuine contender, a questionable attitude has always been France’s downfall. Again this year they go into a tournament looking in good shape saying all the right things, but you just never know if they will just decide they can’t be bothered and pack it in.


Young fearless talent that has so far answered all questions asked of them. On paper look a real force, but maybe this tournament is too soon and the lack of experience will be a factor. Question marks will remain until they show what they can do against the very best, but will be one to watch.


There was a time when the attacking talents of Messi and co. seemed to have the firepower to blow past everyone. However, showings at recent tournaments have meant that Argentina is no longer top billing as they used to be. That said, Argentina is Argentina and Messi is Messi, so there is always the chance that Argentina can finally blow everyone away to be the number one once again.