The disappointing performance in the 2014 World Cup signaled the end of the Golden generation for Spain and with it went many stalwarts of the team like Xavi and Xabi Alonso. Their second round elimination at Euro 2016 was further evidence that this team was on a decline which led to their coach Vicente Del Bosque resigning and he was one of the major architects of the past glory days. By appointing the coach of the U21 team Julen Lopetegui, they decided to partially rebuild their team with a blend of young players and some from the successful generation and it has certainly yielded the fruits with them breezing through the qualifying campaign while producing some scintillating performances in the process hence leading some pundits to consider them as one of the favorites for the World Cup once again something which was a far cry just about 2 years ago.

Spain are no doubt one of the favorites for the World Cup, they are back to playing the type of football which brought them so much success in the past, but this time they are a bit more direct with players like Isco and Thiago Alcantara sometimes allowed to showcase the magical skills. Secondly, the core of the national team is made up of Barcelona and Real Madrid players who have been dominating European competitions for the past 4 years, so there is no doubt most of these players are at the peak of their powers and will not be intimidated regardless of the opponents. Spain will head to Russia fancying their chances and as of now no one can truly rule them out, but here are some other nations who will certainly be giving them a run for their money.


When it comes to the World Cup Brazil are always one of the favorites, they were the first team to qualify for the world cup apart from host Russia and this time around they certainly have the team to go all the way. They have Neymar among their ranks who is the most expensive player in the world and is presently considered as one of the best around, but don’t get it wrong this is certainly not a one-man team. Their Head Coach Tite has built a solid team with an excellent style of play and fantastic team chemistry. Immediately, you watch them play they leave no doubt in your mind they are a collective unit with every player aware of their specific role. The coach so believes in this team to the point he has already released his starting lineup for the first match and 4 other players who will be traveling to Russia barring injuries. They will certainly be around when it matters most.


They are the current holders of the World Cup and they have never been a team who shy aware or easily gets intimidated in big tournaments. Germany are almost always part of the latter stages of the World Cup and this year won’t certainly be different. The core of the team from the last World cup are pretty much still available with just a few exciting additions like Julian Draxler, Leroy Sane, Timo Warner and many others who only make the team stronger. They have been playing among themselves for a very long time and have a perfect understanding on the pitch with a very strong team spirit. The Germans are no doubt among the favorites  and obviously can’t be ruled out as the first nation to retain their title since Brazil in 1962.


When you think of Argentina and football only one name comes to mind Lionel Messi, without Messi Argentina would have certainly not been participating in the World Cup with him having dragged them through the qualifiers. Now they are here and are just possibly 7 matches away from the trophy which has eluded them for the past 28 years and with all the quality players they have in stock such as Sergio Aguero, Angel Di Maria, Gonzalo Higuain then factor in the Messi this might just be the tournament they finally gel as team and break this hoodoo which has been haunting them for quite some time. Finally, their Head Coach Jorge Sampaoli who was brought in the latter stages of qualifiers is a proven winner and certainly knows his around so don’t just count the Argentinians out yet.