Freescoring South Americans eye second round success
This World Cup may have been billed as African football’s moment to shine, but South America is the continent currently stealing the limelight.
With Tuesday’s action concluding groups A and B, Uruguay and Argentina look like the teams likeliest to prosper in their second round matches.
Both South American sides finished top of their groups, as Uruguay beat Mexico 1-0 to top Group A and Argentina overcame Greece to reign supreme in Group B.
Uruguay have yet to concede at the World Cup, and their impenetrable backline should prove to be a barrier too strong for the advances of South Korea.
Another key element of Uruguay’s success is their attack, which features strikers Luis Suarez and Diego Forlan, who have three goals between them in South Africa.
Argentina have been even more impressive going forward, and their battalion of striking talents – Lionel Messi, Carlos Tevez and 11/4 Golden Shoe favourite Gonzalo Higuain to name just three – helped Maradona’s side to seven goals in the group stage.
They faced their last 16 opponents, Mexico, at the same stage in 2006, where Argentina won 2-1 in extra time thanks to a wondrous Maxi Rodriguez volley. A repeat 2-1 Argentina victory in South Africa is 7/1.
This World Cup is proving to be a fruitful one for South America, with Brazil and Paraguay almost certain of joining Uruguay and Argentina in the second round, and Chile sitting pretty at the summit of Group H.