World Cup 2018 Groups Officially Announced

World Cup 2018 Groups Officially Announced

World Cup 2018 Groups Officially Announced

After a mass of fretting over the past few days, the official groups for next year’s World Cup in Russia have finally been announced, and there’s already plenty of meetings to be excited for. The draw was conducted this afternoon, with every nation’s manager eagerly watching, and the draw itself being carried out by some of the competition’s favourite former players and managers.

The first shock was to see Portugal drawn alongside Spain in Group B, as they both form an enticing derby through location, as well as successes over recent years. Brazil were handed a mostly straight-forward group, in featuring in Group E alongside Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia, but all three of those sides are unpredictable, so they could be in for some surprising tests.

Germany memorably won the last edition of the tournament in Brazil back in 2014 and they’ve been put with wildcard side Mexico, South Korea and Sweden, who were regimented enough to cancel out Italy’s chances of qualification. Argentina, who partnered Germany in the last World Cup final, are given a moderately easy opening hand in facing Iceland, Croatia and Nigeria.

Of course, it’s England who football fans throughout the nation have been anticipating, and their biggest challenge will be getting past Belgium, who possess a cavalcade of top quality players. Most of those are in the Premier League too, like Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard, Toby Alderweireld and Romelu Lukaku, which only puts more pressure on Gareth Southgate’s men. It tends to be the case that they’ll put up a fight against strong sides but will falter against lesser nations so that could be a positive for England, but taking on Tunisia and Panama could be their downfall.

The hosting nation were draws alongside Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Uruguay, so their biggest threats will be Liverpool winger Mohamed Salah and Uruguay strike-partners Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez. That’s a pretty easy group for a side who are expected to go far, which says a lot about this competition as both Egypt and Uruguay have a surprising level of firepower.

The Official FIFA World Cup 2018 Groups

What did you think of the draw? Were you happy with who your nation got? Do England stand a chance alongside the likes of Belgium, Tunisia and Panama. Let us know your thoughts by tweeting us at @FootyAccums

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