2010 Ghana World Cup Predictions
by Doc's Sports - 4/5/2010
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Nickname: The Black Stars
Number of World Cup appearances: 1
Best World Cup finish: Second round (2006)
Ghana’s lone World Cup appearance was a major success, as the 2006 debutants were the Cinderella of the tournament in Germany. Faced with an extremely difficult task in a group that featured Italy, Czech Republic and the United States, the Ghanaians met the challenge head on, finishing ahead of the Czechs and the USA. The West African nation advanced to the Round of 16, but met mighty Brazil and was unable to continue its magical run.
Ghana is one of Africa’s most successful football nations, having participated at both the Olympic level and also in the Africa Cup of Nations, and thus the expectations have grown from within to find at least a similar outcome if not more this summer in 2010.
Behind a handful of wonderful players, Ghana is no longer considered just a regional name. Across the globe, the respect this country earned in 2006 will certainly mean all 31 nations in South Africa will hear their footsteps this time around.
The Black Stars cruised through their qualifying group and coupled with the fact that they will play on African soil, more than ever the confidence is there that Ghana can again progress out of the group round and find a win or two in the knockout stages.
Key Player To Watch
Never just a one-man squad, Ghana is extremely dangerous with their versatility and pace. And the name that is most recognized throughout the world as one of the best midfielders is Michael Essien. His brilliance can be witnessed at Stanford Bridge with Chelsea. However, the combination of him along with Sulley Muntari (of Inter Milan) and Stephen Appiah (of Bologna) make this group so much more lethal.
Best Team Asset
Ghana is an extremely confident side, almost more than they should be. But that works in a positive manner. During their 2006 World Cup push, before they had accomplished anything, they were not one bit afraid of an Italy or Czech Republic but knew that if they came to play and were hitting on all cylinders, they could beat anyone in the world. And they can beat anyone in the world. Their self-belief is very impressive to see play out on the field.
Key Team Weakness
The Group of Death involves Group G’s trio of Brazil, Ivory Coast and Portugal, however many, including myself, feel Group D is the second toughest quartet. And Ghana’s weakness might be that they again are stuck into a very tough group to navigate through. Along with European power Germany, Australia, who also seized the moment in 2006 with their impressive debut, and up-and-coming Serbia will no doubt be fierce opponents.
Ghana World Cup Predictions
As mentioned above, this might just be the trickiest group to advance out of. Group G gets the ‘Group of Death’ moniker, but unlike having a minnow in North Korea, not one Group D team is weak. Any two of the four could advance, and the fact that each hail from different regions makes it even more exciting to see different styles of football from each of the four. Ghana gets the nod in my eyes to advance with Germany, but do not be surprised if The Black Stars fight hard for the top spot. After reaching the Round of 16 in 2006, the sky is the limit in South Africa.
Key First Round Match (best betting opportunity)
I think Ghana benefits from getting Germany in their last group play match. So if the African nation can fire hot out of the gates against Serbia on June 13, then expect a good showing the rest of the way. Ghana advanced in 2006 in spite of a 0-2 loss to Italy in their opener, so this time around I expect them to begin the tournament strong. Look at the Ghanaians in their first match.
Ghana World Cup Group Play Schedule
v. Serbia, June 13, 2010 – 2:30 p.m. ET at Loftus Versfeld (Tshwane/Pretoria)
v. Australia, June 19, 2010 – 7:30 a.m. ET at Royal Bafokeng (Rustenburg)
v. Germany, June 23, 2010 – 2:30 p.m. ET at Soccer City (Johannesburg)
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