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What will be the big surprise of wc2002?

Like Cameroon 1990 (quarters) Sweden 1994 (bronze) Croatia 1998 (bronze)

I'll go for Japan, firstly they are playing at home and then they have impressed me alot in friendlies. They are are team we should count on. Another team that will go far is Paraguay!
 

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I think the team machine Slovenia in their first ever WC might be a unpleasant surprise for the bigger teams.
Senegal might also turn out to be deadly dangerous if underestimated :devil:
 

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Yeah I agree with Cracker, Slovenia is a team that can achieve great things at the World Cup. Also, look out for the likes of Turkey and I reckon the hosts Japan might be able to pull something off.
 

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It's between Senegal and Turkey for me. I'm hoping Turkey doesn't surprise Brazil though. :tongue:
 

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I'll go for Senegal. They are very strong physically, very skilled and ultra fast....If i had to chose, i'd rather play Argentina in the oppening game of the World Cup, than Senegal. That's the worst draw possible and we all know how crucial for teams, is their first game of the tournament, as it sets the tone for the rest of the competition.
 

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I go for Paraguay.They went very well in the Qualifyings and they have the squad to go over the 16 that went in France 98.Personally i always say that they are conteders for the first place in this World Cup but noone believes me.:(
 

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I'd go for Ireland. They have been playing great all through their friendly games and overcame Holland to qualify and yet they get no recognition. Also look out for Cost Rica, they are in one of the easier groups so may surprise a few. ;)
 

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If Roy Keane will miss the WC im sure it will be tougher For Ireland. Although they have a good team and i think they atleast will advace from their group. Will Dyer also miss the world cup? Im sure he would have made the English starting lineup if he wasn't so injury prune.
 

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I don't see Ireland as a surprise team :wth:
I mean they have a very strong squad and really work well as a team, that's why they won against the Netherlands, who failed on the team-spirit front.
 

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I think Turkeyan be the Croatia of 98 and finish 3rd if we play our good game. We usually play our good game in competition like this so I think we stand a big chance. Poland, Senegal, Japan, and Slovenia could create upsets and suprisetop contenders also watch ou for Croatia they got new talent coming through the ranks and are building a great team for the futurr. I admit Croatia were very lucky to qualify but the youngsters coming out of Croatia are really good player like Tudor etc.
 

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Turkey and Senegal... Though I think the Irish would ambush a lot of teams... I love the never-say-die attitude.
 

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As I said before, I really don't see teams like Poland, Turkey and Ireland like real underdogs. First of all, take a look at their groups, Poland should manage to beat USA and South Korea, on a good day they might even take a full pointer against Portugal. Turkey have the easiest group in the WC. Me and NN were reflecting over the fact that Sweden won the qualifier group for the WC, where Turkey ended second. Still, Sweden ends up in the group of death, and Turkey got two walk-overs and a Brazil that isn't itself anymore :wth:
As for Ireland, it wouldn't surprise me a bit if they went on and won the group ahead of Germany :strong:

Sweden's capacity isn't precisly an underdogs, but in the group of death I think it would be an upset if Sweden made it through. On a good day they have what it takes to breakdown the worlds best attacks, but I doubt we'll make it as far as WC94 :proud:
 

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Cracker, well said. I don't know why people are overlooking Sweden. They might not be able to create a lot of chances but they are one team that can turn a half chance into a goal.

Just remember that you heard it from a non-Swede too, I think they can win the damn group. They can beat England...since England has never beaten them I don't see that changing...they can beat Nigeria easily if they adopt the counter attack style employed so devastatingly by Denmark ( and they have a classical finisher like Larson and a midfield dynamo like Lunjberg)...By the time they meet Argentina, they qualification would already be secured and probably would want to get a good result so as to avoid France.

Could you imagine if Sweden and Nigeria escape from that group? It will be like deja vous... In 98, Spain and Bulgaria were expected to top the group that contained Paraguay and Nigeria too... but Spain and Bulgaria were the once booking the summer vacations after the first week.

Back to reality... if Argentina plays to form, they will win the group... I see Sweden edging England and Nigeria for the second ticket... But thank God that football is not mathematics...:)
 

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I think Ireland and Turkey are in a good position to surprise people. They both have very good squads and will surely do well in the tournament.

It's hard to answer questions like these because there's two ways of looking at it.

1. A surprise team being a team doing well even if nobody expected it but having a very good squad. ie turkey and ireland.

2. A weak team doing well ie south korea and senegal.


So if Ireland were to do well, it shouldn't really be a surprise since we all know how well they did in qualifying. I agree that Keano is a big loss to them but they didn't beat out Holland on the strength of Keano alone so they'll be able to adjust.

Waq, I never really thought of Croatia as lucky to qualify.....we qualified because we were the best team in our group, not by a huge margin but we were certainly not lucky, if anything we were unlucky not to score on so many chances we created in important games. We probably should've had the group won before our last match.
 

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Obviously I will be supporting Turkey; but I'm considering placing a bet on Poland. I believe they have the style to upset teams like France and if they play to their strengths, could cause a major surprise.
 
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