Thursday, March 24, 2011

Debate: Group D

Let's start this up. A daily debate on which teams are better. To kick it off, let's go with the group everyone is talking about: Group D. So who are the two favorites to come out?

Well, right now, it looks like Jamaica and Canada. I don't like mentioning specific players(to keep their privacy intact), but it's still fairly easily to see the way this group is going.

Jamaica has played a lot of exhibition games. They most recently beat Nigeria 4-2, and Nigeria should be no slouch at this point. Nigeria has probably the team that has spent the most time together before the WCP Cup. They played in the Regina Men's Tournament, losing in the final, and seem to have an exhibition and/or practice every single week. That being said, they should be pretty good at this point. Jamaica is no slouch either, and I believe they've played quite a few exhibition games as well, but have preferred to practice more than they play.

Anyway, Jamaica beating Nigeria 4-2 shows that Jamaica might be a lot better than we're giving them credit for. And then they tied Laos 3-3. We've talked about how they depend on their Saskatoon players, but that might not be the case. It looks like Jamaica might be able to handle the tough games on their own. The Saskatoon players will definitely help though.

Canada has played a couple exhibition games as well, but haven't really had their team together either. Their showing has been worse than Jamaica's. Poland has been getting their games in too, but aren't destroying the weaker teams they play. However, Canada and Poland might look and play completely different when the tournament rolls around.

Ukraine and Germany haven't had any exhibition games, and it seems unlikely they'll have a solid feel for the size of the field and gameplay before the tournament. The large majority of Ukraine practices weekly, as does Germany. But a once-a-week practice doesn't provide the same experience.

I say that Jamaica and Ukraine come out. Ukraine played well in the Moose Jaw tournament, even though they lost in the Semi-final, and they stay in very good shape. Their team is ready to go. They'll outlast Canada, Poland and Germany with their rough schedule, because their players are used to it. Their first is also against Scotland, which allows them to feel out how all the other teams play. They won't be surprised. They'll need someone to step up and start finishing chances though. Jamaica is just playing too well, and without Saskatoon players, to not make it out. They've been working hard and are committed to winning. Germany is too unpredictable, and I don't think they can play solid soccer for the entire group stage. Very good team though. Poland just won't have the players or skill to make it out. They'll win a game or two, but I can't see them beating 4 other very good teams.

With that being said...go Scotland! Beat someone in this group!

And submit your brackets!


Anonymous said...

I know it's a long shot, but I personally hope that Scotland comes out with guns a blazing and steals a couple wins away from some of the teams in this pool. Hell even a couple ties would be nice. Would be great moral for Scotland and I think great for the tournament to see a team with such HUGE odds aganst them be the heartbreaker of the tournament costing teams their chance to move on.

From what I've heard Jamaica has been a true force to be reckoned with so far and like you said they don't even have all their players from Saskatoon playing.

Clock Cleaner said...

The Scotland games will be exciting to watch. Teams are completely overlooking them, and apparently they aren't as bad as they were last year. Northern Ireland is decent, and Scotland did well against them. Same with Botswana. They might have lost, but it was close.

If Scotland can take points away from any team, you can pretty much write that team out of the playoffs. But who collapses against Scotland?

Anonymous said...

Germany and Jamaica might be coming into this tournament with a little false hope against Scotland after completely destroying them last year. Odds of Scotland beating Jamaica are slim by the sounds of it, but considering Germany hasn't played any exhibition games it might be a rough one for them, but they play Scotland at the nd of the tourney so they might have their groove by then. Ukraine/Canada might get caught off guard being the first games of the tournament as well...might just look at it like it's a warm up. If Scotland comes in motivated it could get interesting.

Saw that Botswana/Scotland game it Scotland didn't look like the same team they were in the N. Ireland game...maybe they aren't morning people or something. Still did ok, just let in some soft goals and didn't seem to control the middle as well as they could have.

Anonymous said...

Ukraine is essentially Yorkton, and Yorkton is essentially Strikers. Keep in mind that the Strikers beat everyone in the second half of Div.2, even though no one showed up to their semi-final game.

I say it's between Germany, Jamaica and Ukraine.

Jean-Yus said...

Clock cleaner, you have some good points in your round up of group D, but there are a few that i'm going to have to disagree with.
Starting off with thinking Ukraine is used to a tough schedule so they will be able to outlast Canada poland and germany. Yes Ukraine travlled and did well in a tournament, but these games are all spread out. teams have days off in between most games to recover and prepare for the next game, so i really don't see how that has any relevance to how they are going to outlast teams. in the past ukraine has been a team that hasnt been able to hold on for an entire game, which leads to why they tie so often and usually don't make it to the knockout stage.
Secondly, even though Ukraine and Germany have not had any exhibition games to get used to the size of the pitch, alot of their players only really play on the same size field during their regular seasons, so getting used to it is kind of out of the question, we've been playing on the same size of field for the last 5 years, nothing has changed. Maybe without a previous game it will take almost the entire warm up to get used to the size.
Lastly, i have seen a couple of jamaica's games, and yes they look good, but to say they can handle tough games on their own without their stoon guys might be a stretch. Against laos, they were lucky to tie it up and the tying goal was weak at best, and it was a very watered down laos team that also had kash and ronnie. Jamaica still has some serious work to do in order to keep goals out of their net. Their defence looks awful.

My pick is still Canada and Germany. Even though Canada has not looked impressive and Germany has yet to be seen, they still have very similar rosters to last year and their players have all played well together. Jamaica could over take someone, but i don't see them playing consistently enough over the course of the tournament to make it out.

Anonymous said...

Germany and Jamaica coming in with false hopes against scotland? thats an outrageous statement. look at the scores they put up against scotland last year, the games weren't even games. Unless Scotland has somehow progressed into a semi pro team, I would bet that once again Germany and Jamaica will smash them.

Anonymous said...

Germany and either jamaica or canada will come out. Who cares about exibition games

Clock Cleaner said...

When I said Ukraine is used to a tough schedule, I referring to their players being used to enduring rigorous and tough games like the ones Ukraine will face. Yorkton has played in a lot of big games. You're right, there is a break between games, so players can recover and refocus. But I just think Ukraine is better suited to face 5 other good teams, especially when they can't afford to make a mistake. Germany probably has more skill though.

The teams need to figure out where their players are best suited to play on the field. And there's a couple guys I know on these teams that(from what I've heard) are playing nowhere close to the position they should be.

I agree with the knock on Jamaica's defence. That defence can be exploited very easily with the right players. If Saskatoon help is coming, it better be for the back. There's a reason Jamaica never makes it through, and I'd say it's because their defence never changes.

Anonymous said...

Jamaica and Canada come out of this group. Hands down. Too much skill.

Anonymous said...

I know you're all just speculating. Cause once the tournament starts all the skill of Ireland won't help you against teams that play a team game and shoot any chance they get. I heard germanys simon kluge hasn't played since October ? That sounds like a good recipe to create some rust

Anonymous said...

check out the Official WCP Cup blog:

Anonymous said...

good thing germany has 2 goalies. fantastic rust remedy

Anonymous said...

jamaica vs ES tonight at 10 if anyone is interested

Anonymous said...

to much skill on Canada? Germany has more skill then Canada, hell even Ukraine does, but no team plays together like Canada and can form a tight knit shell defensively and espescially when they have a lead like Canada. Canada vs. Jamaica will be a great way to open up this group and gauge what the teams are bringing to the tournament and the result for this game will have a major impact on who makes it out of the group between these 2 teams, daayuumm cant wait for a week today!

Anonymous said...

Jamaica over El Salvador 2-1

Anonymous said...

Jamaica over N.Ireland 2-0

Jamaica undefeated in their Exhibition games.

Jamaica is going to kick the shit out of Canada in more ways than one.

Anonymous said...

Jamaica lost to Nigeria 4-3 3 weeks ago and won 4-2 a week ago