Olympic Soccer 2012: Predicting Who'll Win Gold, Silver and Bronze Men's Tourney
This Olympic Men's tournament will have some really good talent on display and Bleacher Report is predicting which teams will win gold, silver and bronze.
Five teams—Spain, Uruguay, Mexico, Great Britain and Brazil—are favourites for the tournament. Those teams are the most likely to medal, though teams like Senegal and South Korea could spring surprises.
In this article we'll take a look at the progress of each of these teams through the tournament and who will end up in the medals.
Here's how the tournament would progress and how the medal podium would look.
Uruguay had two wins in its warm-up games and the attacking talent within the squad is one of the best in the tournament by far.
They will be in Group A with Great Britain, Senegal and the UAE. Uruguay should win all three of its games and advance as the No. 1 team from the group.
If nothing else, their attacking talent, which includes Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani, should see them past their opponents.
Great Britain's one warm-up game against Brazil didn't really spring any surprise as the team lost 2-0.
They are also in Group A with Uruguay, Senegal and the UAE. The game against Uruguay could be tough and looks like a loss on paper but Great Britain should do well against the other teams in their group.
There is a good amount of Premier League experience in this side and if the key players perform well throughout the tournament they will have a good chance. A second-place finish in the group is likely.
Mexico has been involved in a few warm-up games for the tournament with their only positive result coming against Great Britain.
This side has some decent talent which is headlined by Giovani dos Santos. In Group B, Mexico will have to match-up against South Korea, Gabon and Switzerland.
It has the looks of a pretty tight group but Mexico has some solid youth players and will be expected to top the group.
Brazil looked really good against Great Britain and with all the firepower on their squad they will be tough to stop.
In Group C they will have to face Egypt, Belarus and New Zealand.
They should have no problem getting top spot in their group and they are expected to make a long run to the final.
Spain's next generation of stars will be looking to continue the countries dominance on the international stage.
In Group D, they will face Honduras, Morocco and Japan.
One win and one loss in the team's warm-up games isn't great but they still shouldn't have any problems getting top spot in the group.
Those five teams will then advance to the second round and are likely to be joined by South Korea, Egypt and Japan.
Here's how the quarterfinals and semifinals would play out as a result.
Uruguay vs. South Korea
The South American's attacking talent will be key here and though South Korea will put up a fight, a win for them is unlikely.
Brazil vs. Japan
Brazil's match with Japan could prove very similar to the other South America versus Asia match. Brazil will advance.
Mexico vs. Great Britain
Great Britain will be counting on home support, and hoping that Micah Richards may be able to stop Giovani dos Santos. This should be the tightest game in the quarterfinal but Great Britain will win.
Spain vs. Egypt
Spain should again have no problem in this game with Juan Mata as well as Ander Herrera pulling the strings and players like Alberto Botia in defense.
Uruguay vs. Brazil
The clash of South American giants will be won by the team that has a better defense. Brazil is the winner their with the likes of Thiago Silva and Marcelo at the back.
Great Britain vs. Spain
Spain is a stronger side than Great Britain and will show that when the sides play. Spain will advance to what will be a mouth-watering final.
Gold Medal and Bronze Medal Games and Medalists
Gold Medal Game: Brazil vs. Spain
This game is too tight to call but I feel that a more cohesive Spanish team, many of whom won the U-21 championship a year ago, will come out on top.
Bronze Medal Game: Great Britain vs. Uruguay
Uruguay's attack may have failed them against Brazil but they will spur them to a bronze medal in this Olympic Tournament.
Having gone through all these stages of the tournament, the medal podium would look like this.
Gold Medal: Spain
Silver Medal: Brazil
Bronze Medal: Uruguay
Brazil would still be searching for that elusive gold medal while the Spanish would have picked up its second gold.