World Cup Group D – a quick preview

Giannoulis, Giannis
Image by Hoops Photos

World Cup Group D – a quick preview

Goalkeepers: Hans-Jorg Butt (Bayern Munich), Manuel Neuer (Schalke 04), Tim Wiese (Werder Bremen)
Defenders: Per Mertesacker (Werder Bremen), Heiko Westermann (Schalke 04), Philipp Lahm (Bayern Munich), Jerome Boateng (Hamburg), Andreas Beck (Hoffenheim), Arne Friedrich (Hertha Berlin), Serdar Tasci (Stuttgart), Marcell Jansen (Hamburg), Holger Badstuber (Bayern Munich), Dennis Aogo (Hamburg).
Midfielders: Sami Khedira (Stuggart), Piotr Trochowski (Hamburg), Marko Marin (Werder Bremen), Bastian Schweinsteiger (Bayern Munich), Christian Trasch (Stuttgart), Mesut Ozil (Werder Bremen), Toni Kroos (Bayer Leverkusen).
Forwards: Lukas Podolski (Cologne), Miroslav Klose (Bayern Munich), Stefan Kiessling (Bayer Leverkusen), Cacau (Stuttgart), Thomas Muller (Bayern Munich), Mario Gomez (Bayern Munich)
Comment: Like most of the last major tournaments Germany is an underdog. The team managed to produce surprising results  throughout the years, reaching the final most of the times. But now it is a different story – the team lost its captain through injury. The regular keeper should be Butt because of various inforunities. The guy is experienced and has good qualities, but has not played often for the national team. The defense looks solid, despite the relatively young age of the players, so if Germany manage a performance in South Africa, it will be thanks to this line. Upfront there is nothing remarkable except the young Ozil and Kiessling. To sum up, Germany should be happy if they pass the group, let alone win the tournament.

Goalkeepers: Richard Kingston (Wigan, England) Daniel Adjei (Liberty Professionals), Stephen Ahorlu (Hearts of Lions) , Stephen Adams (Aduana Stars)
Defenders: Samuel Inkoom (Basle, Switzerland), Hans Sarpei (Bayer Leverkusen, Germnay) Lee Addy (Bechem Chelsea), John Mensah (Sunderland, England), Rahim Ayew (Zamalek, Egypt), Isaac Vorsah (Hoffenheim, Germany), John Pantsil (Fulham, England), Jonathan Mensah (Granada, Spain) Eric Addo (Roda JC, Holland)
Midfielders: Dede Ayew (Arlese Avignon, France) Michael Essien (Chelsea, England) Kwadwo Asamoah (Udinese, Italy) Agyemang Badu (Udinese, Italy) Stephen Appiah (Bologna, Italy) Anthony Annan (Rosenborg, Norway) Haminu Dramani (Lokomotiv Moscow, Russia), Sulley Muntari (Inter Milan, Italy) Quincy Owusu-Abeyie (Al Sadd, Qatar), Derek Boateng (Getafe, Spain) Bernard Kumordzi (Panionios, Greece) , Laryea Kingston (Hearts, Scotland), Kevin-Prince Boateng (Portsmouth, England)
Strikers: Prince Tagoe (Hoffenheim, Germany) Asamoah Gyan (Rennes, France), Dominic Adiyiah (AC Milan, Italy), Matthew Amoah (NAC Breda, Holland)
Comment: Ghana is the team that impressed us the most in the recently finished CAN. The team used its physical strength to defend and they did it well. The team has the ability to close the match once they get the lead, and if they apply it here Ghana has all the chances to progress. The team has sufficient quality in all the lines, but most important they work as a unit. A difficult team to play against and looks Under-ish.

Goalkeepers: Vladimir Stojkovic (Wigan), Zeljko Brkic (Vojvodina Novi Sad), Bojan Isailovic (Cukaricki Belgrade), Andjelko Djuricic (Leiria).
Defenders: Branislav Ivanovic (Chelsea), Antonio Rukavina (Munich 1860), Nemanja Vidic (Manchester United), Neven Subotic (Borussia Dortmund), Aleksandar Lukovic (Udinese), Ivan Obradovic (Saragossa), Aleksandar Kolarov (Lazio).
Midfielders: Dejan Stankovic (Inter Milan), Nenad Milijas (Wolverhampton), Miloss Krasic (CSKA Moscow), Milan Jovanovic (Standard Liege), Milos Ninkovic (Dynamo Kiev), Zdravko Kuzmanovic (Stuttgart), Zoran Tosic (Cologne), Gojko Kacar (Hertha Berlin), Radosav Petrovic (Partizan Belgrade).
Forwards: Nikola Zigic (Valencia), Marko Pantelic (Ajax), Danko Lazovic (Zenith), Dragan Mrdja (Vojvodina)
Comment: Serbia has finally a generation with a world class defense. So now its the perfect time for the Balkan side to achieve something remarkable. The Serbs have always played as a unit and with the guidance of Antic there is no doubt the team is ready for big things. Midfield and forwards are OK to score a single goal in the matches, and with Vidic and Ivanovic at the back this should be sufficient for wins.

Goalkeepers: Mark Schwarzer (Fulham), Adam Federici (Reading), Brad Jones (Middlesbrough), Eugene Galekovic(Adelaide United)
Defenders: Lucas Neill (Galatasaray), Craig Moore (unattached), Scott Chipperfield (Basel), David Carney (Twente Enschede), Luke Wilkshire (Dynamo Moscow), Rhys Williams (Middlesbrough), Shane Lowry (Aston Villa), Mark Milligan (JEF United), Jade North (Tromso), Michael Beauchamp (Al-Jazira)
Midfielders: Tim Cahill (Everton), Mark Bresciano (Palermo) Vince Grella (Blackburn) Brett Emerton (Blackburn), Jason Culina (Gold Coast), Harry Kewell (Galatasaray), Brett Holman (AZ Alkmaar), Carl Valeri (Sassuolo), Mile Jedinak(Antalyaspor), Richard Garcia (Hull), Nick Carle (Crystal Palace), Tommy Oar (Utrecht), Dario Vidosic (Nuremberg), James Holland (AZ Alkmaar)
Forwards: Josh Kennedy (Nagoya), Scott McDonald (Middlesbrough), Nikita Rukavytsya (Twente Enschede)
Comment: Australia is a sympathetic team – the team shows good tactical and skill qualities. This is influence from the Dutch coaches they prefer to work with. Unfortunatelly for them, the Ozzies are among the hardest group in the World Cup and will be a remarkable achievement for them to secure a point here. Last Cup they almost upset the world by battling hard against Italy, but now all Ghana, Serbia and Germany have more qualities at disposal. Australia has a stable keeper and decent midfield, but the inexperienced defense will trip them at South Africa.

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Tsartsaris Kostas
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