Ever since Sepp Blatter announced his desire to bring the World Cup finals to Africa, the FIFA President has also, on numerous occasions, stated his belief that an African nation has the ability to become world champions in football one day. Blatter has since realised his dream to stage the finals in an African country (South Africa 2010), but before then, there has been no representative from the continent in the final of previous editions.
There has been no shortage of contenders. For example, Nigeria has often been considered the strongest team in African football. However, they have yet to go as far as the final in any past World Cups. Ghana and Ivory Coast are also touted as countries that will challenge the established order in world football, yet the proof is in the pudding and they have not proven anything so far.
So will there ever be a World Cup winner that is part of the African continent? We can only look as far as the next World Cup finals and assess each of the contenders that have qualified for the chance. From there, it might perhaps be possible to find out if the global footballing community can celebrate the ultimate rise of the sport in Africa 먹튀검증.
Nigeria carries huge expectations on their shoulders every time they play. They are often regarded as the Brazil of Africa – playing the most sublime soccer on the continent and exporting some of the world’s best footballers. It is also these qualities that raise expectations unrealistically high and the team often shows the strain of having to deal with that burden in various tournament. Too often they have flattered to deceive in previous World Cup finals and African Cup of Nations – the equivalent of the World Cup but played exclusively amongst the continent’s countries. The Super Eagles are also often torn apart by internal disputes over money, disciplinary issues and an ever changing management that has disrupted many a preparation. Fans are not hoping for much this time and compared to previous squads, the Nigeria of 2010 do not quite spark everyone’s imagination.
Algeria has made two previous trips to the World Cup finals and have overall made a positive impression. Known for mixing clever play with gutsy determination, the Algerians are your typical underdogs that can spring an upset when least expected, while stumbling when expectations are raised. It was again evident on their path to South Africa 2010 when they actually dumped African champions Egypt out of the qualifiers in stunning fashion. Yet, they failed horribly in the recent African Cup of Nations finals and have already been written off by most critics.
Cameroon will forever be remembered as the team that felled giants Argentina with one swift strike from legendary striker Roger Milla. Their fairy tale run in the 1990 finals will always live long in the memory of football fans worldwide. While being the most successful African team at the finals, Cameroon have not actually gone further than the quarterfinals. The current version does not have the flair nor personality of previous incarnations, but they do have a solid core and a more European management approach that might provide the discipline required to succeed on the global stage.
Ivory Coast can truly qualify to be one of the favourites to go all the way in South Africa. Boasting some of the best players in the world in every position such as striker Didier Drogba, midfielder Yaya Toure and defender Kolo Toure to name but three, they appear to have the perfect blend of skill and physical attributes that produce the best athletes in the sport. A major distraction prior to the tournament might set them back. Former coach Vahid Halilhodzic was dismissed after a poor African Cup of Nations showing and Sven Goran Ericksson was brought in to replace him. The Swede may have the reputation to carry the job, but Ericksson also previously failed on the international stage with England. He could fare better with a more talented squad at his disposal.