Separate The One Man Teams And The Likely World Cup Winners

Cesc Fabregas Warm-Up 30-01-2008, Emirates Sta...
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Many supporters of so called ‘one man teams’ are in denial, always thinking that they have a star player surrounded by many other brilliant players. It is always a blow to lose your best player but the really top teams can always live without one star player, even if it’s their best player. One man teams can really struggle once their star player is missing.

One example of a possible one man team is Arsenal. This may be a bit controversial, they admittedly have some really good players such as Robin Van Persie but the fact remains when Cesc Fabregas doesn’t play their performances and results drop massively. Fabregas was ruled out for the season after he was injured during the Barcelona game at the Emirates, in the next six games without him Arsenal won one, drew one and lost four. The only win was a 1-0 win at home to Wolves with a last minute goal. Clearly they seem to be struggling without Fabregas.

With the World Cup in South Africa fast approaching it is important for teams to go with more than just one star player or they could find themselves in trouble after some injuries. Perhaps the biggest example of a team who has been reliant on one player in recent years has been England. At the 2002 World Cup David Beckham should have been the best player for England but he picked up an injury before the tournament and despite playing for England at the World Cup he never looked quite fit, and England went home early. In 2006 it was Wayne Rooney’s turn as the man that made England tick and he played the latter stages of the tournament despite not being fully fit, then he got himself sent off, and England were eliminated. Recently Wayne Rooney has had a few injuries and England’s hopes rest firmly with the Man Utd striker, if he doesn’t play England will not win the World Cup, even with quality players like Gerrard and Lampard in the team.

Other teams who fall into the category of one man teams include the two teams that are home to the world’s two best players, Argentina and Portugal. Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are much better than the next best players in their national sides and with both countries having struggled to qualification, even having those players probably won’t be enough to win the World Cup.

The best example of a team so strong that one major player being injured doesn’t end their chances is Spain. Liverpool have always struggled without Fernando Torres over the past couple of seasons when he has been injured, he currently looks set to start the World Cup injured after recent surgery yet Spain aren’t panicking, despite Torres clearly being a world class striker they have an even better striker in their ranks in the form of David Villa. If Xavi gets injured (he is injured at the moment) then they have the likes of Cesc Fabregas who is normally on the bench for them, this is Arsenal’s key player and he can’t even get in the Spain team because of players like Xavi and Iniesta. This shows serious strength in depth when world class players are on the bench.

Brazil are yet another strong side who certainly aren’t a one man team, even if star striker Luis Fabiano got injured, they still have great strikers like Nilmar and Pato (touted as the next big thing in world football) who can step in. These may not be names all football fans are familiar with but they are very talented players who will get plenty of goals for Brazil.

Despite England looking to have one massively talented player they are very closely matched to both the Spain World Cup Odds and the Brazil World Cup Odds. Two teams stand out as better bets from the three and it is England who aren’t one of them.

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