As we approach the end of Match-day one for all teams present in the world cup, we take a look at the performance of world cup favorites. The world cup have been a competition that is never shy of displaying surprises in the past and the current edition of world national competition have already began with warning for all attendants.
Elites teams have failed to repay the faith placed in them by football media pundit as upset have engulfed the world cup so far. Teams favored to lift the world accolade come July with high odds at 10bet, have failed to impress as under-dog teams have refused to be pushovers in the competition. The series of shock upsets began on the night of Friday when Spain and Portugal locked horns at the Fisht stadium. The Spanish, highly favored to lift the trophy, were the first to concede in the game after Portugal were gifted an early penalty. La Roja fought back in the second half to level and ultimately took the lead for the first time in the game late on.
The 2010 world cup winners, despite boasting of the best and most experienced footballers in the world could not cement their firm grip on the game as Portugal found a way to crawl back into the game in the closing stages. Hours later Iceland provided another shock to the football world as they provided a great performance to grind out an unlikely draw against Argentina despite being underdogs in the world cup. The 2014 world finalist took the lead through Sergio Aguero in the 19th minute after plenty of possession but the Strakarnir Okkar team levelled through Alfred Finnbogason.
Iceland were not finished there as they put up quite a defensive display to grab the result with Hannes Halldorsson denying Lionel Messi from the spot. The fourth day of the world cup brought the biggest upset in the competition. Germany suffered a shock defeat to Mexico in a game they were fancied to win. This became the first time the reigning world champions had lost an opening game in the world cup since 1982. “Die Mannschaft” became the third reigning champions to lose their opening game in 16yrs after France and Spain who incidentally never made it out of the group.
Brazil, despite the quality of experienced players were not spared either as they surrendered their early lead to a well-organized and tactical Swiss team. The Selecao team took the lead in the 20th minute through Philippe Coutinho in the first half but the Swiss brought the game level with a goal by Zuber before the hour mark, before putting in a defensive performance to deny the 5 times world champions late on in the game. France might have won their game against Australia but a critical look at the game shows that the Les Bleus had to win through a controversial Paul Pogba strike despite the quality of players at their disposal.
With the second round of matches in the world cup set to kick off this week, football’s elite teams such as Spain, Brazil, Germany and Argentina will have to improve their game if they hope to avoid early exit from the competition.