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FIFA World Cup 2018: 5 potential upsets in the group stages

Kevin Zhao
CONTRIBUTOR
Top 5 / Top 10
4.18K   //    14 Jun 2018, 12:49 IST

Denmark v Mexico - International Friendly
Mexico - International Friendly

Anything can happen at the World Cup. That's the beauty of the competition. Although the final rounds are usually dominated by international powerhouses, the competition has produced its fair share of upsets in the group stages.

In 2014, Costa Rica knocked off both Italy and Uruguay in the group stage and advanced all the way to the quarter-finals before narrowly falling to the eventual third-placed Netherlands in penalties.

After Spain had lost humiliatingly at the hands of the Dutch in their first match, La Roja needed a win against Chile to advance out of the group and were favoured to do so. However, Chile had other ideas, beating Spain 2-0 and breaking Spanish hearts.

These are just a few of the great upsets that the World Cup gave us the last time around. It doesn't always take world-class talent to muster out a win. Sometimes it takes a tenacious, gritty, and hard-working team. Other times, it may come down to pure luck.

Although upsets are relatively unpredictable, here are some games that should definitely be on your radar.


Germany vs Mexico, Matchday One

Like always, Mexico will head into Russia with immense pressure. With the talent Mexico has possessed in the past, you could argue that they are one of the world's biggest underperformers. Having said that, this Mexico team has the ability to compete with any team in this tournament, including the reigning champions Germany.

Germany's overall depth is second to none. Die Mannschaft will field one of the tournament's best defences along with a solid midfield, but there are questions being raised about their current form. The Germans have managed one win in their last four matches, only beating Saudi Arabia in that span.

With Germany susceptible to an early hiccup, I think Mexico has a decent chance of stealing all three points right from under Germany's nose.

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Kevin Zhao
CONTRIBUTOR
Young and ambitious opinion haver
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