Brazil 2014: Group F

With just three days to go to the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil, we now take a look at Group F featuring Argentina, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Iran and Nigeria.  Matches will be played in Belo Horizonte, Cuiaba, Curitiba, Porto Alegre, Rio De Janeiro, and Salvador.

ARGENTINA

World Cup winners in 1978 and 1986, there is at least one player in their squad who many feel will only truly have greatness bestowed upon him when he wins the FIFA World Cup.  Virtually on home soil in neighbouring Brazil, 2014 is as good a time as any for Lionel Messi.  Coach Alejandro Sabella has got Messi firing for La Albiceleste but his defence will be the chief concern.  A powerful midfield could be the key.

Prediction: Runners-up

BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA

The Balkan nation are making their World Cup debut and will feel they can progress from this group after impressing during the qualifiers.  The reality is that they might find the biggest stage of them all somewhat more intimidating.

Prediction: Group stage

IRAN

Expected to be the whipping boys of the group, Iran will be determined to prove the naysayers wrong.  If the Princes of Persia can muster one victory in their three outings that will be seen as a success but if they do that, a draw in one of the other two could be enough to see them sneak in to the next round.

Prediction: Group stage

NIGERIA

Africa’s champions carry the continent’s hopes.  Under Stephen Keshi the Super Eagles have returned as a continental powerhouse and they are a well-organised unit.  Keshi will have looked at this group and thought, “We can qualify from this” and that is an expectation their fans will demand to see fulfilled.

Prediction: Second round