2018 FIFA World Cup Group F Preview

We’re just one day away from kickoff in the 2018 World Cup in Russia. Here’s how Group F looks going into the tournament.

TEAMS

Germany

  • FIFA Rank: 1
  • Team Summary: The top ranked team in the world’s strong offense will look to dominate their opponents like they always do, using possession and crisp passing to generate chances. They’re a slow offensive team, but they’re extremely effective, patiently waiting for the right time to strike. The defending World Cup champions should have no problem easily getting out of this group on their way towards their quest to go back-to-back.
  • Player to Watch – Ilkay Gundogan: Gundogan is essentially Germany’s replacement for the retired Bastian Schweinsteiger. Look for him to work the middle of the field, helping to orchestrate the German offense. He has plenty of weapons to work with on the wings and at striker, so if he does his job well, this team goes all the way.

Mexico

  • FIFA Rank: 15
  • Team Summary: In the past six World Cups, Mexico’s quest has ended in the Round of 16. They’ll be looking to break that streak this year, with the help of what has been a recently cold offense. Mexico has struggled to score in their friendlies leading up to this tournament, despite what is generally a relatively strong offense. They’ll need to turn it around to make sure they get past Sweden for a spot in the bracket, and even more so if they want to do anything once they’re actually in the bracket.
  • Player to Watch – Javier Hernandez: The veteran forward will need to do what he does best, which is score goals. He has more career international goals than anyone on this team. He’s the lifeblood of this Mexican squad, and their World Cup hopes live and die with him.

South Korea

  • FIFA Rank: 57
  • Team Summary: South Korea isn’t predicted to make much noise in this tournament, and for good reason. Besides their one star forward, listed below, there isn’t a lot to talk about with this roster. They will need nothing short of several incredible miracles if they want any chance of even making it out of this group and into the bracket.
  • Player to Watch – Son Heung-min: The striker had an incredible season with Tottenham, and will hope to bring that same success to the pitch for the Koreans. He’s the brightest spot on this roster by far, and should be extremely exciting to watch, no matter how the rest of the team around him performs.

Sweden

  • FIFA Rank: 24
  • Team Summary: This will be the first time in a while seeing Sweden on a large stage without star player Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who recently retired from international play. His loss certainly hurts the Swedes chances of advancing out of this group, but doesn’t completely count them out. The Swedes have struggled to attack well without him, and will need to find solutions to that large problem sooner rather than later.
  • Player to Watch – Emil Forsberg: If there’s one player to look to in order to help create offense for this team, it will be Forsberg, who will be starting up front. He brings a great pace to this team and will look to cause problems for his opponents with some trickery he always seems to have up his sleeve.

MATCHUPS

Germany vs. Mexico

  • Sunday, June 17 at 11:00am Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Germany 2, Mexico 1

Sweden vs. South Korea

  • Monday, June 18 at 8:00am Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Sweden 3, South Korea 1

South Korea vs. Mexico

  • Saturday, June 23 at 11:00am Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Mexico 2, South Korea 0

Germany vs. Sweden

  • Saturday, June 23 at 2:00pm Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Germany 3, Sweden 1

Mexico vs. Sweden

  • Wednesday, June 27 at 10:00am Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Mexico 2, Sweden 1

South Korea vs. Germany

  • Wednesday, June 27 at 10:00am Eastern
  • Predicted Score: Germany 3, South Korea 0

PREDICTED TABLE

  1. Germany – 9 points
  2. Mexico – 6 points
  3. Sweden – 3 points
  4. South Korea – 0 points

Sam Smith

Sam has been with MSB since 2015. He covers stories ranging from all things Maryland to breaking national stories, specializing in the NFL, and college football and basketball. He currently resides in Dallas, Texas, where he attends Southern Methodist University (SMU).

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