YOOOAdrian’s 2010 World Cup Preview- Group E

CAMEROON

Individual talent wise, this is the best accumulation of players of any particular African squad.  Unlike the NBA, futbol is a team game.  Think about it this way, in Mighty Ducks II, the USA team led by Charlie Conway had a lot of individual talent.  Gordon Bombay worked his ass off to get his team to play together.  Eventually, they beat Iceland in the final to capture the Gold Medal.  If Cameroon can play cohesively, they could very well advance.

Projected Starting Lineup

  • GK- Carlos Kameni
  • LB- Benoit Assou-Ekotto
  • CB- Nicolas Nkoulou
  • CB- Rigobert Song
  • RB- Stephane Mbia
  • LM- Landry Nguemo
  • CM- Alex Song
  • RM- Jean Makoun
  • LF- Pierre Webo
  • CF- Achille Emana
  • RF- Samuel Eto’o

Off the Pine

  • D- Sebastien Bassong
  • M- Aurelien Chedjou
  • F- Mohamadou Idrissou

Formation- 4-4-2/ 4-3-3

Strategy

If there was ever, beautiful disorganized chaos, this is it.  Futbol is supposed to be a team game, but there is a me in team.  That me is Samuel Eto’o.  All the pressure will be on the foot of Eto’o.

Player To Watch

(Charlie is doing such a great job with the players that I’ll just stick to one guy from now on)

  • Alex Song- The nephew of the legendary Rigobert Song.  Alex can play too by the way, very creative with the ball.  Sing us a song you’re the midfield man, sing us a song to the next round.  Ok that was corny, I just really like Billy Joel.

Schedule

  • 6/14- Japan
  • 6/19- Denmark
  • 6/23- Netherlands

Odds- 80-1

FIFA RANK- 19

DENMARK  

  

 I just looked at a picture of Denmark’s coach Morten Olsen.  The first thing I though of was Bill Cowher.  This guy’s chin sticks out like Pinnochio’s nose.  The only thing missing about Olsen is he doesn’t have that patented Cowher scowl.  Olsen was the team captain during Denmark’s first tenure at the World Cup in 1986.

Projected Lineup

  • GK- Thomas Sorenson
  • LB- Simon Poulson
  • CB- Daniel Agger
  • CB- Simon Kjaer
  • RB- Lars Jacobsen
  • LCM- Jacob Poulson
  • RCB- Christian Poulson
  • LM- Thomas Kahlenberg
  • CM- Jon Dahl Tomasson
  • RM- Dennis Rommedahl
  • CF- Nicklas Bendtner

Off the Pine

  • F- Martin Jorgenson
  • D- Per Kroloup
  • F- Jesper Gronkjaer

Formation- 4-2-3-1/ 4-3-3

Strategy

The 4-2-3-1 allows Kahlenberg and Rommedahl to fly down the wings and create.  This team is a defensive club, but really doesn’t counter attack because their style of play doesn’t suggest it.

Player to Watch

  • Christian Poulson- In a way, he’s the team’s most important player.  He’s conftorable playing back defensively and setting up the offense with his pin-point passing ability.

Schedule

  • 6/14- Netherlands
  • 6/19- Cameroon
  • 6/24- Japan

Odds-  125-1

FIFA RANK- 36

JAPAN  

During the last decade in the NBA, the Houston Rockets seemingly made the playoffs every year.  Only once did they get out of the first round.  Japan is like those Rocket teams.  Japan always seems to qualify for the World Cup, but they never advance.

Projected Lineup

  • GK- Seigo Narazaki
  • LB- Yuichi Komano
  • CB- Marcus Tutio Tanaka
  • CB- Yuji Nakazawa
  • RB- Atsuto Uchida
  • LDM- Makoto Hasebe
  • RDM- Junichi Inamoto
  • LM- Keisuke Honda
  • CM- Yasuhito Endo
  • RM- Shunsuke Nakamura
  • CF- Shinjii Ozaki

Off the Pine

  • M- Diasuke Matsui
  • M- Yuki Abe
  • F- Keiji Tamada

Formation- 4-2-3-1

Strategy

Coach Takeshi Okada usually goes with a 4-4-2, but against inferior opponents, he’ll most likely go with a more defensive and conservative approach.  The back four is versatile as all four have the ability to push forward on the offensive end.

Player to Watch

  • Kaisuke Honda- He has the athletic prowess in his genes.  His uncle was an Olympic canoeist while his uncle was an Olympic wrestler.

Schedule

  • 6/14- Cameroon
  • 6/19- Netherlands
  • 6/24- Denmark

Odds- 200-1

FIFA RANK- 45

NETHERLANDS  

Double the dutch delight.  This squad is the Phoenix Suns of futbol.  They are so impressive offensively.  Historically, like the Suns, the Netherlands seem to always come up a bit short when it matters the most. 

Projected Lineup

  • GK- Maarten Stekelenburg
  • LB- Giovanni Van Bronckhorst
  • CB- Joris Mathijsen
  • CB- John Heitinga
  • RB- Gregory Van Der Wiel
  • LCM- Mark Van Bommel
  • RCM- Nigel De Jong
  • CM- Wesley Sneijder
  • LF- Arjen Robben
  • CF- Robin Van Persie
  • RF- Dirk Kuyt

Off the Pine

  • F- Eljero Elia
  • M- Ibrahim Affelay
  • M- Rafael Van Der Walt

Formation- 4-2-1-3/ 4-5-1/ 4-3-3

Strategy

Get the ball to the playmakers and let them go to work

Schedule

  • 6/14- Denmark
  • 6/19- Japan
  • 6/24- Cameroon

Odds- 14-1

FIFA RANK- 4

GAME-BY-GAME PREDICTIONS

  1. 6/14 (7:30)- Netherlands vs Denmark (Ned- 3-0)
  2. 6/14- (10:00)- Cameroon vs Japan (Cam- 3-1)
  3. 6/19- (7:30)- Netherlands vs Japan (Ned- 4-1)
  4. 6/19- (10:00)- Cameroon vs Denmark (2-2)
  5. 6/24- (2:30)- Netherlands vs Cameroon (Ned- 3-2)
  6. 6/24- (2:30)- Denmark vs Japan (1-1)

PROJECTED GROUP STANDINGS

  1. Netherlands (9 pts)
  2. Cameroon (4 pts)
  3. Denmark (2 pts)
  4. Japan (1 pt)
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