If you don’t fancy your own team’s chances at Brazil 2014, and fully expect them to flounder in a penalty shoot-out (looking at you, England), flatter to deceive in the group stages (looking at you, Holland) or simply implode with in-fighting between your players (looking at you, France), then why not make things a bit more exciting with a second team to support? You can learn a few choice phrases in the native language to get you into the spirit of it and you may even find yourself so taken with your adopted nation that you incorporate it into your holiday plans! Here are some of the best second sides to choose from…
You’ll struggle to find a side which will play with more pride than Bosnia-Herzegovina. After being at the epicentre of the Balkans War, this nation has struggled and fought for independence, and can now take pride of place at the biggest football tournament in the world. Expect plenty of passion and fighting spirit as Manchester City’s Eden Dzeko and his compatriots take on the might of Argentina.
Many people have Belgium tagged as dark horses for this World Cup, because the country has been blessed with what is probably it’s finest ever crop of players. Global stars such as Vincent Kompany, Eden Hazard, Romelu Lukaku and Thibaut Courtois will undoubtedly make this an exciting team to watch, and you’re sure to have plenty of like-minded football fans to help you cheer them on.
Few fancy Chile to get out of the group stages (they are competing against 2010’s finalists Spain and Holland), but it will be entertaining to watch them try. Arturo Vidal and Alexis Sanchez are the star names in a team which never seems to stop running, specialising in an attacking, high-pressing game. Also, Countdown‘s brainbox Rachel Riley has apparently run a complex mathematical formula for predicting the World Cup winner, and her sums are tipping big things from Chile. So there you go.
They may be stuck in a group with Brazil, but Mexico have a great record against the host nation. Although there are few stars in the side – Manchester United’s Javier Hernandez is probably the most high-profile player – every World Cup seems to see Mexico over-perform playing fast, carefree football. And it’s an excuse to eat copious amounts of nachos and fajitas while you’re watching – all in the spirit of support. Feel inspired? Get started with your language-learning experience now! Try your favourite language here 🙂