FIFA World Cup 2014 at a Glance: Group E

With the FIFA World Cup 2014 qualifying stage underway, the games are getting intense. The time has come to look into Group E to see what it has to offer. France, Switzerland, Ecuador and Honduras make up this interesting group. The European teams seem like a safe bet to go through from this particular group, but soccer isn’t that simple and anything can happen on the field. So let’s have a look at Group E to see where each team stands.

group e

Team: Switzerland

Manager: Ottmar Hitzfeld

Path to Qualification (Wins, Losses, Draws):

The Swiss qualified for the FIFA World Cup 2014 with ease to say the least. They were in rampaging form all through the qualification campaign. Switzerland played ten games, won seven and three of them were draws. They managed to score a total of seventeen goals while conceding only six. They will be one of the teams to look out for.

The Game Changers:

Ottmar Hitzfeld, the coach, has a wealth of experience. He is one of the most respected managers in the world today. Hitzfeld won five Bundesliga titles with Bayern Munich and two with Borussia Dortmund. He also led both clubs to European Glory, Dortmund in 1997 and Munich in 2001. He is the man the Swiss will count on to make it to the next round.

Switzerland also have players like Johan Djourou, Ricardo Rodriguez, Valon Behrami and Xherdan Shaqiri in their ranks. These are pretty talented players who play for some of the best clubs in Europe. Their contribution will be vital if the Swiss are to make it through.

World Cup History:

Total Appearances: 10
Best Finish: Quarterfinals in 1934, 1938 and 1954

Prediction for the Group: 2nd

The Swiss I think will do just about enough to come out of the group and advance to the Round 16. Yes, they didn’t make it past the group stage in the last World Cup but Hitzfeld now has several players who are more experienced and mature. The midfield is their strongest weapon and it will have to fire to push the Swiss team forward.

Interesting Fact:

Ottmar Hitzfeld is one of the only four coaches in soccer history to have led different clubs to European glory.

Team: France

Manager: Didier Deschamps

Path to Qualification (Wins, Losses, Draws):

France qualified for the World Cup by the skin of their teeth. It is hard to believe but it really was that tight. The French finished as runners up to Spain even though they won five, had two draws and lost only one game in the qualification campaign. The second spot provided them with a tricky playoff against Ukraine. They lost the first leg in Kiev 2-0 but came back with a bang in Paris winning 3-0 and making it to another FIFA World Cup.

The Game Changers:

The likes of Frank Ribery, Paul Pogba, Karim Benzema and Samir Nasri will have to be at their best in the World Cup. They have the talent and the time has come for them to channel it properly. The manager Didier Deschamps is the ideal man for the job. He was the captain of the team the last time France won the World Cup and was a very competitive player. He knows what it takes to succeed and this experience will be vital.

World Cup History:

Total Appearances: 14
Best Finish Winners in 1998

Prediction for the Group: 1st

The French are going to Brazil with high hopes and rightly so. With the kind of talent they have, the team is not only confident to make it through the group easily but also looks good to make it to the final stages of the tournament. Yes, the French have somehow managed to shoot themselves in the foot at times but with Deschamps at the helm that looks highly unlikely. They are my pick to top Group E.

Interesting Fact:

France was among the four teams from Europe who played in the first ever World Cup in the year 1930.

Team: Ecuador

Manager: Reinaldo Rueda

Path to Qualification (Wins, Losses, Draws):

Ecuador was the fourth team from the CONMEBOL region to make it to the World Cup automatically. They did just enough to qualify for the tournament. The Ecuadorians played sixteen games and won seven. They lost five games while four were draws that landed them with Uruguay who could not make it due to their inferior goal difference.

The Game Changers:

Antonio Valencia and Christian Noboa will have to lead from the front. The two players need to be at the top of their game if Ecuador are to make it to the round of 16.

An advantage that Ecuador has is that it will be the only team in Group E familiar with the conditions. They are from the South American part of the world and that one fact might just tilt the balance in their favor.

World Cup History:

Total Appearances: 3
Best Finish: Round of 16 in 2006

Prediction for the Group: 3rd

The Ecuadorians haven’t really set the world on fire recently and that is the truth right there for you in black and white. They have quality but not enough to go through to the next round. France and Switzerland have better odds in more or less every department and I see Ecuador coming unstuck against both teams.

Interesting Fact:

Ecuador took part in World Cup qualification for the first time in their history in 1962.

Team: Honduras

Manager: Luis Fernando Suárez

Path to Qualification (Wins, Losses, Draws):

Honduras was the third team to go in the CONCACAF region at the end of the World Cup qualification round, following the United States and Costa Rica. They played a total of ten games out of which they won four, lost three while three were draws. Their third place finish in the group was good enough to land them an automatic place in this year’s World Cup.

The Game Changers:

Wilson Palacios, Maynor Figueroa and Emilio Izaguirre are the key players for Honduras. These three will need to be backed by the other players in the team but the onus will be on them to guide Honduras’s World Cup campaign. They will need to lead from the front if Honduras are to advance past the group stage for the first time in their history.

World Cup History:

Total Appearances: 3
Best Finish: Group Stage in 1982 and 2010

Prediction for the Group: 4th

They are not in a rich vein of form going into the World Cup. They have clicked in patches and that is never a good sign when you are about to go into the big tournament. All the signs point to them crashing out of the World Cup. They just don’t look like a strong enough team to make a serious dent to the other three teams’ aspirations.

Interesting Fact:

Honduras have beaten and eliminated five times World Champions Brazil in a major tournament when they knocked them out from the 2001 edition of the Copa America. They are the only Central American side to achieve that feat.

Having analyzed all the teams in Group E it certainly looks as if France and Switzerland are the two sides with best chances. There might be a little surprise in store for the fans but I don’t think that will be enough to change the final outcome of the group. So France and Switzerland to qualify with Ecuador and Honduras missing out is my prediction for Group E of the World Cup 2014. Now let’s wait for the action to unfold.

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Ivy Oscar is a professional writer and blogger from Magnolia, Delaware. She likes to write about music, sports, celebrities and all the good things in life.
Categories: Soccer, Sports

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