FIFA World Cup 2018 – Group G: Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England
Widely considered as a golden generation for Belgium with their young squad full of potential and quality, they will test their strength in this year’s World Cup tournament. Looking at their qualifiers, there was almost no competition for them. The main rivals they had to face were Bosnia-Herzegovina. With a total of 43 goals and only 6 conceded Belgium went through qualifications with ease. Belgium boasts a strong offensive line, but the main concern for Belgium is their defence. This won’t be a problem in their group but going forward in the tournament it will most likely cause some problems.
Star players: Eden Hazard/Kevin De Bruyne
Prediction: Top 8 is likely to happen, however, I do have some concerns about their defence. The strong offence may compensate for it at the start of the tournament but once you are faced with teams such as Germany, France, Brazil.. you need a team that can perform on both ends.
Finishing over USA and Honduras, Panama got a direct entry to the World Cup, which is a big accomplishment for this nation. This team is considered a hard-working one with a good chemistry, which somewhat compensates for their lack of talent, however, quality is needed to advance in this tournament. Once you are against the best teams in the world you truly see how strong you are and the recent defeat against Switzerland (6:0) only shows Panama will struggle to achieve anything great in the World Cup. To be fair Panama could be happy if they manage to win a point in group G and their best bet to do so is against Tunisia.
Star player: Roman Torres
Prediction: Last spot in the group G
Much like Panama, Tunisia can be happy they qualified for the World Cup, however, they as well lack the talent to do anything great. They are surely better than Panama, but not even close to England and Belgium. We can say Tunisia has a well-organized defence, and in my opinion, an underrated midfield which can be a threat if taken too lightly. Despite all that do not expect Tunisia to advance, as the only opponent they can expect to get points from is Panama, as far as England and Belgium, Tunisia will need a miracle to play at the same level as them.
Star player: Aymen Abdennour
Prediction: 3rd in group G
With terrible performance in 2014 tournament, England is hoping on improving and going further, and to be fair they have an excellent chance to do so. Comparing England team to the one in 2014 World Cup, they have improved in all aspects, especially with Harry Kane, who has proven he is a world-class striker who can cause problems to any defence when he is on his game. However, I am a bit concerned about their offensive power as of whole, as they have scored only 18 goals in their qualifiers, which shows they can struggle against teams with a strong defence. Looking at England’s defence, there are still some concerns. Joe Hart has not been performing as expected which could harm them once they are against stronger teams. As mentioned before they have improved, but that does not mean they are good enough to go all the way. Surely they are superior to Tunisia and Panama but they could be having problems against Belgium.
Star player: Harry Kane
Prediction: Finishing above Belgium could be a hard task for England, nonetheless, it could happen if Belgium fails to perform as expected against underdogs Panama and Tunisia. Anyhow finishing 2nd in the group would see them going against the 1st team from group H. With that in mind England could achieve top 8.