A lot was said about the 2018 edition of the FIFA World Cup before it started in Russia.
In truth, after the draws, some pairings had fans talking. There was the ‘Group of Death’ as usual and other groups which was hard to predict. So many superstars were headed to Russia and it was difficult to tell what would happen.
54 games after, fans all over the world are still reeling from the turn of events in venues like Rostov-on-don, St. Petersburg, Moscow, et al.
Here are a few reasons why it has been a strange FIFA World Cup:
Germany finishing bottom of their group
The 2014 winners were one of the favorites to go furthest in this competition. The side was bulging on the sides with so many superstars; so much so that they had to leave young Leroy Sane out of the squad.
But after two losses (against Mexico and South Korea), the Germans didn’t even feature in the fight for qualification; something that has not happened in a long while.
When it comes to international football, there are only two things involved: it’s either both teams decide to not let much in, in terms of goals, or both teams go on a scoring spree.
The latter has been the order of the day at the World Cup. After 54 games played, only one has ended in a 0-0 draw (France vs. Denmark).
High grade drama
Did you see Toni Kroos’ 95th minute winner against Sweden? How about Cristiano Ronaldo’s free-kick against Spain to level the scores? Let’s not forget Belgium’s comeback against Japan and South Korea’s two goals against Germany after 90 minutes had been exhausted.
From the goal fest in the opening match, to surprise wins by Mexico (against Germany) and Russia (against Spain), it’ll take a while to see this level of drama again at the World Cup.
That’s just three out of the many reasons why this one has been a strange World Cup.
With names like Germany, Spain, and Argentina out of the running, the stage is looking set for a very unlikely winner of the World Cup. For the teams that remain, there’s still plenty of work to do before lifting the trophy.
The French squad will face their toughest test so far in the tournament when they take on Uruguay. The South Americans have conceded just two goals in the tournament (France conceded 3 against Argentina).
After that, Russia will take on Croatia as their World Cup adventure continues. The third quarter-final clash will be between two star-studded teams: Brazil and Belgium.
The South Americans are now odds on favorites to win the trophy. The Europeans, with 12 goals scored, are the highest goal-scoring side in the tournament so far.
As we look forward to all these fixtures, the question remains: Who do you think will win the World Cup? Are we set to see a surprise winner?
Leave us a comment and share your thoughts with us.