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Why it will be tough for Africa at the World Cup

By | Published Sat, December 5th 2009 at 00:00, Updated January 1st 1970 at 03:00 GMT +3

Bismarck Mutahi

As the World Cup draw was done yesterday in Cape Town, South Africa, many waited with bated breath hoping their nations could get a kind one.

But of more concern are the six African nations that will be hoping one of them could lift the trophy at the football extravaganza next year.

Looking at the Africans teams at the World Cup, is it possible that one of them can go all the way and lift the World Cup?

South Africa

Although the hosts were seeded ahead of the draw yesterday, it will be a big task for the rainbow nation to expect them to win the World Cup. In Everton star Steven Pienaar they have a player they will look up to but they have not had the best of preparation ahead of the tournament.

Verdict: Group stage


Cameroon have history behind them as they strive to go a step further from their best position at a World Cup which was the quarter-final at the 1990 event.

I believe the Indomitable Lions would have even made the semi-finals were it not for controversial officiating.

They have not had smooth qualification though and they made sure of it in the last day. They also have a player in Samuel Eto’o who they have built their team around. If they get their act together they could go a step further.

Verdict: Semi-finals


It has been the same old story for the Super Eagles, self destruction. The Nigerians had Mozambique to thank for making it to South Africa after the Mambas stopped Tunisia in the last day of qualifiers. But the question is have Nigerians put their act together? The answer is no and they will struggle to get out of the group stages.

Verdict: Group stage


Algeria have been rebuilding for a long time and were rewarded for that effort with a place in the World Cup after the controversial play-off against arch-rival Egypt.

A place in the World Cup final could, however, have been the much that the North African nation could have achieved and they will only be happy to have made it.

Verdict: Group Stage


Ghana went through the qualifiers without much struggle and even had the luxury of playing the last match when they had qualified. In Michael Essien they have a player who has matured just in time for the World Cup but their big problem will be scoring.

The Black Stars do not have a proven goal scorer and the likes of Junior Agogo and Asamoah Gyan have not been reliable.

They have the best midfielders who can boss play but finishing has been their problem like it happened in the last World Cup. Unless they get a proven goal scorer then they will not go far.

Verdict: Second round

Ivory Coast

The Elephants are seen by many as the team from the continent that can win the World Cup. It is the strongest team of the Africans sides in the World Cup but their passage to the next stage will depend on the mood of their captain Didier Drogba and the draw. The Ivorians did not have a kind draw in the last World Cup and they must be hoping that this time it will be better. They have the squad that can go far though.

Verdict: Quarter-finals.

— The writer is a Senior Sub Editor at The Standard

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