As far as the World Cup goes, it’s hard to look any further than Brazil and Spain, but the unconventional tactics, if you can call them that, of Diego Maradona, might give Argentina a shout of winning.
Spain broke their trophy drought at the European Championships two years ago and have continued to shatter all sorts of international records since. Between 2006 and 2009, la Furia Roja set the world record for the most international matches undefeated, winning 32 out of 35 matches, before winning all ten matches in World Cup qualifying, including tricky away wins in Turkey, Bosnia and Belgium. A strike force of David Villa (36 goals in 54 internationals) and Fernando Torres (23 in 71) and a dream midfield including Xavi, Iniesta and Fabregas will have rival teams grateful for a rare touch of the ball.
All the same, Brazil are a better value bet, given that they have quality running throughout the side. With Kaka, Robinho and Luis Fabiano up front and the two best attacking full-backs in the world in Maicon and Danny Alves the five-time winners will be a threat as always going forward. It was no surprise they beat Tanzania 5-1 last night.
Crucially, though, it is their defence which makes them such a force to be reckoned with. Lucio has been immense for Inter this season, Julio ‘the Wall’ Cesar is one of the best goalkeepers in the competition and defensive midfielders Felipe Melo and Gilberto Silva take no prisoners in the middle of the park.
Argentina, however, could be the surprise package. And not just because they have an amazing array of individual talent at their disposal. Quite how Maradona is going to choose between Lionel Messi, Gonzalo Higuain, Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero and Diego Milito is beyond me. Then there’s the most in-demand player of the summer, Angel Di Maria, the up and coming Javier Pastore and Juan Sebastian Veron pullng the strings. The Little Witch has been reborn since leaving the Premier League with his brromstick between his legs, winning the South American Player of the Year Award two years running.
But the ace up Maradona’s sleeve is his relationship with his players. They see they see him as a God-like figure, partly because he is the greatest player who ever lived, and partly because he is letting them have sex whenever they want. Unlike headmaster Fabio Capello, who has banned the WAGS from seeing his players
in private s except for the day after matches, El Pibe De Oro has said his players can play hide the salchicha Argentina any time they want.
“Sex is a normal part of social life and is not a problem,” said team doctor Donato Villani, although the pink slip does come with a curious caveat. “It is important the action should not reverberate in the legs of the players.” Roughly translated, I think that means, “Lads, have you tried the High Dive yet?”