WORLD CUP 2010: Preview – Algeria vs. England in Group C encounter

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WORLD CUP 2010: Preview – Algeria vs. England in Group C encounter

Pre-tournament favourites from Group C England are yet to win a match in the group stage. They have drawn both of their opening matches against the USA and Algeria and now find themselves in a do or die situation. Their performance over these two matches has actually gone from bad to worse and with the weight of expectations mounting with the passing time, they will be under immense pressure to save their dignity and qualify for the knock out stage.


Slovenia is currently at top of the group with a win over Algeria and a draw against the USA. They must, however, be disappointed that they could not materialise on the two goal lead over the USA and could only take a point in this match. A win in this match would have guaranteed their qualification for the Round of 16 but now they are right in the mix again in the race for qualification.


In last round of group matches, England will face Slovenia which they need to win in any case to keep their hopes for the second World Cup title alive. A very high scoring draw will also do for England but only if USA and Algeria share points with possibly no goals in their last group match. Slovenia only needs a draw from this match for progressing through this group and a possible top spot in the group table. This situation of Slovenia will make things even more difficult for England. Although Slovenia conceded two counter attack goals to the USA but they have enough discipline in their defensive side of the game to make it really tough for England.


Slovenia just needs to avoid defeat in this match for not depending on the USA-Algeria result. A win for Slovenia over England will guarantee their top spot in the group while a draw will get them the second position if USA gets the likely win against Algeria. If the USA-Algeria match ends in a draw then Slovenia need not to worry about the result in their own match as Slovenia will have their qualification guaranteed to the knock out but position will still matter. As last matches of the groups are played simultaneously therefore Slovenia will need to do it themselves and not wait for the USA- Algeria result.


Like England, USA has also played two drawn matches in the tournament so far. In their first group match, they were just lucky to get an equaliser which was helped in by the English goal keeper Robert Green. The second match was more of a real test of resilience and mental strength when they were came from two goals down to draw the match. They had actually put the ball in back of the net for the third time also but mysteriously denied by the referee for an unseen foul.


USA will face Algeria in their last group match for which they need to win to keep their fate in their own hands and guarantee their place in the Round of 16. If England fails to beat Slovenia in their match or draws at 0-0 or 1-1 then a point from the Algeria game will also do for USA for progressing through this group with second position. A defeat at Algeria’s hands, however, will end their 2010 World Cup campaign.


Algeria, on the other hand, is in a more troubled situation. First they need to win their last group match against the USA and then hope that England could also get the better of Slovenia. In this case both Algeria and Slovenia will tie at four points each from where goal difference and number for goals scored will come into play.


The winner of this group will face runners-up of Group D in the Round of 16 while the second positioned team from this group will face their winners. Group D consists of Germany, Ghana, Serbia and Australia.


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