The stage is set for an exciting FIFA World Cup

Aaron Young
Staff Writer

The FIFA World Cup, a tradition that happens every four years. It’s been around for almost 90 years, with it’s inception in 1930. There has been 20 World Cups along the way including the current one in Russia.

Spain, Italy, and most recently Germany were crowned the World Cup champions. This year, plenty will be looking to make a run to the finals and a mark on history.

This year’s world cup includes the European giants of Germany, France, Spain and Italy, the star-studded Brazil, Argentina, and Portugal, along with the smaller countries in Tunisia, Iceland and Israel. Of course, the hosts in Russia are present as well.

Brazil’s Neymar gestures during the group E match between Brazil and Switzerland at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Rostov Arena in Rostov-on-Don, Russia, Sunday, June 17, 2018. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana)

Wait, am I missing someone? Where’s the United States, oh they didn’t make it. Our red, white, and blue patriotism will not be in attendance this year as they failed to qualify, losing to Trinidad and Tobago. The first time they haven’t participated in the event since 1990!

Our neighbors in the Great White North also failed to qualify. Canada’s men’s team has not qualified with the exception of their 1986 appearance.

However, Mexico has had a fair share of their appearances in the World Cup, including this year’s in Russia. Mexico is in Group F, along with Sweden, South Korea, and the last World Cup champions, Germany. Despite not being the favorites to come out of the group, the team has proven they shouldn’t be taken lightly.

Yesterday, they upset Germany, 1-0, behind Hirving Lozano’s goal in the 35th minute. This has raised many eyebrows and made people think again and question if these athletes have what it takes to make a run.

The Mexican national team played on a world class level, if you will, and were very impressive throughout the game against Germany. They came out in attack mode and almost had a goal in the 1st minute. The squad kept up a sharp, aggressive approach and were consistent. Germany had their fair share of chances, but Mexico never gave in.

In fact, the team almost put the game to rest with a near-miss in the 80th minute that would’ve been the dagger.
Looking at the odds to get out of the group stage and perhaps go further into the tournament, Mexico has a +500, behind Germany who is at a -325 in Group F.

Other teams worth a note are Spain (-220), Belgium (-145), and Uruguay (-110). The last one did surprise me a bit but seeing the rest of the group, Russia, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia, they are no doubt the favorites to come out of Group A.

Let’s hope our southern border neighbors keep up the intensity and potentially advance to the round of 16 and maybe even the quarterfinals (knock on wood).

With that being said: What is an article about one of the biggest global events without some predictions. Now, I won’t provide in-depth analysis here, but I will start with the quarterfinals and go from there:

Quarterfinals

France vs. Uruguay
Brazil vs. Belgium
Mexico vs. England
Spain vs. Croatia

Semifinals
France vs. Belgium
England vs. Spain

Finals:
France vs. Spain
France winners

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