50 Burning Questions for the 2010 FIFA World Cup
Going into this World Cup, many people have many questions about what will happen. From "Will my nation win the World Cup?" to "Who will be the best player in this World Cup?" there will be many different questions that will be pondered by football fans around the globe.
With the World Cup rapidly approaching, here is are 50 Burning Questions for the 2010 World Cup (which are in no particular order).
Will South Africa Advance From Group A?
The lowest ranked nation going into this World Cup (currently 90th in the world), South Africa only have gotten into this World Cup due to the fact that they are the hosts. After several bad results in friendlies, Bafana Bafana now find themselves in danger of possibly not being able to advance from Group A.
Now no nation has failed to advance from their group, but will South Africa do the impossible and do that?
Will Mexico's Young Players Lead El Tri out of Group A?
Going into this World Cup, hopes are high for the Mexican National Team as this current young group of players that are on the National Team are considered by many to be the greatest group in Mexico's history.
With players such as Guillermo Ochoa, Giovani dos Santos and Javier Hernández (among others), Mexico will have some fantastic young players on their roster.
Now, will those players help lead Mexico to the Round of 16 for the fifth straight World Cup?
What Impact Will Thierry Henry Have on This World Cup?
After his infamous "Le Hand de Frog" moment against Ireland in the UEFA World Cup playoff, Thierry Henry has had a dramatic drop in form that has seen the former Arsenal star go from being a starter on FC Barcelona all the way to Major League Soccer.
But Henry will have one final moment on the international stage as he will play for France in this World Cup.
The question for Henry will be how big of an impact will he have on this World Cup?
How Will Diego Forlan do for Uruguay?
The most neglected side in Group A by the media, Uruguay still find themselves as one of the strongest sides in this World Cup.
And a large part of that success is Atletico Madrid star Diego Forlan's play for La Celeste, as a productive group stage for Forlan will be a major help for Uruguay to advance from Group A.
So will Diego Forlan step up his play?
Will This be Lionel Messi's World Cup?
In this World Cup, there will be lots of focus on manager Diego Maradona, but there will also be tons of focus on Lionel Messi, who is considered by many to be the best player in the world.
But despite his great success for FC Barcelona, Messi has not been able to achieve that success for Argentina.
So this World Cup could be Messi's World Cup if he lives up to expectations, but will he?
Will Nigeria Truly be the "Surprise African Nation" to Watch?
In this World Cup, this could finally be the year that Nigeria put everything together as the surprise African nation in this tournament.
With a young squad and some great appearances in World Cup youth tournaments, Nigeria are poised to be the African nation that could really be poised for a long run.
But will Nigeria do it or get eliminated again early?
Will South Korea Prove That 2002 was a Fluke?
In the 2002 World Cup, South Korea put together one of the most surprising runs together in World Cup ever, as they were able to reach the semifinals in the first World Cup that they were able to advance from the group stage.
But since then, South Korea has been a nation that was unable to advance from Group G and their are major doubts that South Korea will be able to make another run like the one in 2002.
So will South Korea stun the world and make another great run or was 2002 a fluke?
Will Greece do Better Than 1994?
In the 1994 World Cup, Greece were able to qualify for their first World Cup, but found themselves eliminated in the group stage as they failed to garner a point.
But 16 years later, Greece have once again been able to qualify for the World Cup, and hope their success from Euro 2004 will carry over to South Africa.
But will Greece make 2010 another 1994 or the events of Euro 2004 repeat themselves?
Will England's "Golden Generation" Finally Live up to Expectations?
Considered by many to be one of the most talented group's of players ever assembled for England was the group of players such as Steven Gerrard, Frank Lampard, John Terry and Rio Ferdinand that came up to England in the early 2000s.
In all likelihood, this will be the final World Cup for this generation of players, and England will be expecting these player to give England their first World Cup since 1966.
But will the Golden Generation win the World Cup?
How Will the USA Build off of Their Confederations Cup Success?
During last summer's Confederations Cup, the United States were able to defy the odds as they were able to amazingly advance from their group when all hope appeared to be lost, and then beat Spain 2-0 in the semifinal before losing to Brazil 3-2 in an epic final.
With that run, Americans are expecting more success in Group C with a large portion of that squad still intact in South Africa.
But will the USA build off their success of last June or will they fail like they did in 2006?
Will Slovenia Make a Great Second Impression?
The 2010 World Cup will be the second ever World Cup that Slovenia will participate in. After a terrible 30th place finish in 2002, Slovenia were able to qualify for the 2010 World Cup, even though they are not expected to advance from Group C.
But this is still the World Cup, and anything could happen as Slovenia look to be a real sleeper.
Will Slovenia make a strong second impression in their second World Cup or will they fail?
Could Algeria Sneak Through Group C?
After getting past Egypt into the World Cup via playoff, Algeria find themselves in this World Cup looking to advance through a difficult Group C.
Much emphasis has already been put on Algeria's final Group C clash against the United States, as many think that will be the match that will determine who will finish second behind England.
Will Algeria be able to defy the odds and be able to advance from Group C or will they go home like they did in 1982 and 1986 without making the second round?
What Impact will Michael Ballack's Injury have on Germany?
The captain of Germany, Michael Ballack has been one of the greatest German players during the last decade as Germany came close to several major tournament titles.
But back on May 15, Ballack's ankle ligaments got ruptured on a tackle from Kevin-Prince Boateng, causing Ballack to miss what probably will be his final World Cup.
Now with a very young squad in this World Cup, how exactly will Germany cope without their experienced captain?
Will Australia Manage to Advance from Group D?
The first nation (outside the host South Africa) to qualify for this World Cup, Australia were able to have some great success in the 2006 World Cup as they reached the round of 16.
But this year, Australia find themselves as an underdog to advance from Group D as Germany, Ghana and Serbia will all be a major roadblock for the Socceroos if they are to reach the round of 16.
So will Australia defy the odds and advance from what many people are calling a Group of Death?
Will Serbia Redeem Themselves After a Last Place Finish in 2006?
In their first ever World Cup (as Serbia and Montenegro) Serbia bombed out of the 2006 World Cup with a last place finish in Group C, losing matches to the Netherlands, Argentina and the Ivory Coast in the process.
After an impressive qualification campaign that saw the White Eagles finish first in Group 7 in UEFA qualifying, hopes are high for Serbia to not only improve from their abysmal performance in 2006, but to possibly also advance from Group D.
Will Serbia be able to redeem themselves from 2006, or will they once again fail to advance from their group?
How Big of an Impact will Michael Essien's Have on Ghana?
Going into this World Cup, there are many questions about how healthy Michael Essien will be after suffering a knee injury while playing for Ghana in January's African Cup of Nations.
Overall, Essien is not only one of the best African players in the world today, but also one of the best midfielders, and his impact for Ghana cannot be underestimated.
So will Michael Essien be healthy enough to have a big impact of Ghana in this World Cup?
Will the Netherlands and "Total Football" win a World Cup?
Even though Total Football is no longer nearly as much as it was back in the 1970s and 1980s for the Netherlands, it always will be linked to the Dutch squad after making two straight World Cup finals in 1974 and 1978.
But in this World Cup, the Netherlands once again have a fantastically talented squad with the likes of Arjen Robben, Wesley Sneijder, Mark van Bommel and Robin van Persie on their squad, the Dutch know anything could happen.
So will this be the year the Dutch win the World Cup, or will it be yet another disappointing World Cup for The Orange?
How Will Thomas Sørensen's Injury Affect Denmark?
Back in late April in a Premier League clash between Chelsea and Stoke City, Stoke and Danish keeper Thomas Sørensen injured his elbow while trying to stop a goal from Salomon Kalou.
After the injury, Sørensen's status has become uncertain as Sørensen is a player that is critical for Danish success.
Right now with Sørensen's condition uncertain, how will it affect Denmark?
What Player will Step Up for Japan?
Going into this World Cup, no one knows exactly what player will be the major player for the Samurai Blue as they look to advance from Group E.
Right now, it appears that the player that could make this difference could be CSKA Moscow star Keisuke Honda, as Honda looks to carry over his success from Moscow into this World Cup.
Will it be Keisuke Honda who will make a major difference and get Japan to advance from Group E or could it be someone else?
How Big of an Impact will Samuel Eto'o Have on Cameroon?
Going into this World Cup, another major African star will be Cameroon's own Samuel Eto'o.
For Cameroon, their hopes of advancing will all come down to Eto'o's play if the The Indomitable Lions are to advance onto the round of 16 for the first time since 1990.
So will Eto'o lead Cameroon into the second round or will Cameroon end up eliminated in the group stage again?
Is Italy Too Old?
Going into this World Cup, much emphasis has been put on the age of the defending World Cup Champion Italy's squad.
With nine potential World Cup players at least 30 or above, and a large portion of the squad in their late 20's, Italy will easily have one of the oldest squads in this World Cup.
So is Italy too old in this World Cup to repeat?
Is Paraguay the Dark Horse in this World Cup?
After getting an easy draw that all but ensures advancement into the round of 16, hopes are high for Paraguay as they look to make the quarterfinals and be this year's Cinderella side.
With a strong group of players and a third place finish in COMMEBOL, anything is possible for Paraguay as they look to make that great run.
But, with the possibility of either Cameroon or Denmark in their way, will Paraguay be able to make the quarterfinals?
Will New Zealand Get a Win?
Going into this World Cup, New Zealand have found themselves in football's greatest competition as the only side from the Oceania Football Confederation in the World Cup.
But despite making this World Cup, New Zealand have found themselves as a side that only registered its first point in a FIFA competition last year after a scoreless draw with Iraq in the Confederations Cup.
With their second World Cup this year, New Zealand are not expected to advance from Group F. But will the All Whites defy the odds and win their first match in a FIFA tournament this year?
How Will Slovakia do in their First World Cup?
In their first ever World Cup, Slovakia have found themselves in a challenging group in Group F.
However, this will certainly not deter The Fighting Jondas as they look to make this World Cup a World Cup to remember even though the odds are against them.
So will Slovakia be able to well in their first World Cup or go home early like they are projected to do?
How Will Brazil Manage Through Group G?
After a disappointing run in the 2006 World Cup that ended in the quarterfinals, Brazil find themselves in a Group of Death in 2010, but there is no substitute for winning the World Cup for Brazil this year.
Even with Brazil and Portugal along with North Korea, it will be interesting to see if Brazil lose any points in Group G or if they end up finishing second instead of first in Group G.
So will Brazil slightly stumble in Group G or will they breeze through into the round of 16 without any blemishes?
Will North Korea Get a Point?
The most unknown nation that is in this World Cup both as a nation and in terms of football, no one knows how North Korea will be able to salvage anything in a group that will be impossible for North Korea to advance from.
With formidable opponents in Brazil, Portugal and the Ivory Coast all in their way, one must wonder if North Korea have a chance of getting even a point.
Will North Korea get that point in the World Cup or will go home without anything for Kim Jong-il to celebrate?
Will Didier Drogba get the Ivory Coast out of Group G?
Considered by many to be the best player from Africa playing in this World Cup, Didier Drogba is the heart and soul of the Ivory Coast national football team as they look to advance out of Group G.
In this Group of Death, Drogba will be heavily relied on by the Ivory Coast as they look to advance from Group G and make a deep run in the World Cup.
So will Didier Drogba lead the Ivory Coast out of Group G or will the Ivory Coast once again fail in the group stage?
Will Cristiano Ronaldo Finally Prove Himself on the International Stage?
One of the best footballers in the world since the 2006 World Cup, Cristiano Ronaldo has been a player that has seen himself win a FIFA World Player of the Year and a Ballon d'Or since 2006.
But despite all of his great play on the club level, Ronaldo has been a player that has struggled on the international stage, as he now finds himself as the captain of Selecção das Quinas as they look to build off a run to the World Cup semifinal in 2006.
So will Cristiano Ronaldo finally prove himself on the international stage in this World Cup?
Will Spain Have a Perfect First Round?
With one loss in their last 46 matches, Spain come into this World Cup as one of the best national football teams ever to reach the World Cup in history.
Now, the challenge will move to the World Cup group stage, where they have matchups against Switzerland, Honduras and Chile before the second round.
With three tricky matchups in their way of advancing out of the group stage, will Spain remain perfect or will they lose some points?
Will Switzerland Have Another Great Defensive Performance?
In the 2006 World Cup, Switzerland were able to do one extremely rare feat; not concede any goals at all in play during the World Cup.
With some great goalkeeping from Pascal Zuberbühler, the Swiss were able to finish first in Group G before being eliminated by Ukraine on penalties.
Now in this World Cup, Diego Benaglio will be the goalkeeper for the Swiss and will Benaglio repeat Zuberbühler's performance from 2006?
How Lucky is Honduras?
The luckiest nation that was able to qualify for this World Cup, Honduras now find themselves in a tough group to advance from as Spain, Chile and Switzerland are all in their way of advancing.
Despite this, Honduras are still riding on the high of being in their first World Cup since 1982, and thanks to American defender Jonathan Bornstein's goal that got them into this World Cup, it will be a World Cup for Honduras to remember.
So, will Honduras continue their lucky ways in this World Cup?
How Will Chile Build off their Great Qualifying Campaign?
After failing to qualify for a World Cup since 1998, Chile have finally made it back to the World Cup after their 12 year hiatus with a strong chance to advance from Group H.
The reason why this is true is that Chile were able to finish second overall in COMMEBOL qualifying, which included a victory over Argentina for the first time ever in qualifying (which led to the appointment of Diego Maradona as Argentina's manager).
So, will Chile build off their great qualification campaign in this World Cup?
How will Argentina do under Diego Maradona?
Undoubtedly one of the greatest footballers in history, Diego Maradona got the Argentina job back in the ending of 2008, and has seen Argentina (with players such as Lionel Messi, Carlos Tevez and Gonzalo Higuain) barely qualify for the World Cup.
Now, the question will be how Maradona will manage Argentina to either success or failure, a question that will either be the ultimate high or low no matter what happens.
Will an African Nation win the World Cup?
Of course with this being "Africa's World Cup" many people wonder if an African nation will advance past the quarterfinals for the first time ever and possibly win a World Cup.
The favorite to do this will be the Ivory Coast, but of course they are in the Group of Death (Group D) with Portugal, Brazil and North Korea.
But despite the fact that the Ivory Coast may not advance, is there a chance that another African favorite (Cameroon, Ghana, South Africa or Algeria) could win this World Cup?
Which Player Will Earn the Biggest Contract After the World Cup?
In this World Cup, there will be many players that will be moving to different clubs after the tournament ends.
With these players "emerging" for everyone to watch, players such as Luis Fabiano, Landon Donovan and Guillermo Ochoa (among others) will find themselves moving to different clubs for more money.
So, which player will earn the biggest contract after the World Cup?
Which Favorite Will Be Eliminated First?
In this World Cup, there will be many top nations that will be in this World Cup that will be expected to win the World Cup.
But out of those nations, several of them will have early exits that will be a surprise to most who watch the World Cup.
So who will be the first favorite to be eliminated first from the World Cup?
Who is the Best African Player in this World Cup?
In this World Cup, there will be many African players that are considered to be among the best footballers in the world.
With players such as Michael Essien, Samuel Eto'o, Didier Drogba, Yaya Touré, Kolo Touré, Emmanuel Eboué, Steven Pienaar, Yakubu, and John Obi Mikel (among others) all playing in this World Cup, the African pool of players is extremely deep.
So, who is the best African player in this World Cup?
Will Germany Make the Quarterfinals Again?
In every World Cup since 1982, Germany has been able to continue to make at least the quarterfinals in each World Cup.
But this year, many people believe that this is the weakest German side in quite some time, and Germany will also be without captain Michael Ballack after having his ankle ligaments ruptured while playing in the FA Cup final.
So, will Germany keep their streak alive and make the quarterfinals again?
Will France Advance From Group A?
After controversially getting into the World Cup due to the Thierry Henry handball, France have found themselves in a very difficult Group A in this World Cup.
With Uruguay, South Africa and Mexico also in the group, the 2006 World Cup runners-up have a great chance of not advancing from Group A.
So, will France advance from Group A?
Was Leaving Ronaldinho out of this World Cup the Right Decision?
Since Ronaldinho has failed to make the Brazilian squad in a move by Dunga that surprised some, one must wonder if Dunga did make the right move.
Even though Ronaldinho was a large reason why Brazil did not advance past the quarterfinals in 2006, he is still an incredibly talented footballer that is loved by many throughout the world.
So, did Dunga make the right decision in not including Ronaldinho in Brazil's World Cup squad?
Will Italy Repeat as World Cup Champions?
After winning the World Cup in 2006 with a great defensive effort all around, one must wonder if Italy will repeat as World Cup champions.
This year, the squad remains largely intact, but the roster is getting older and no nation has repeated as World Cup champions since Brazil in 1962.
So, will Italy repeat as World Cup champions in South Africa?
Will Terrorism Play a Part in this World Cup?
Going into this World Cup, there have been rumors by Al-Qaeda that they will use the World Cup as a place where they could launch a terrorism attack on any of the 32 nations participating in the World Cup.
Even though the South African police are extremely well trained and will get help from around the world in terms of security for this World Cup, there is still a chance of a terrorism attack wherever a World Cup is hosted.
So, will terrorism play a part in this World Cup?
Will Spain Once Again Choke in the World Cup?
The biggest underachiever to never make a World Cup final, many people have their money on Spain winning this World Cup due to the great talent that they have.
But still, they never have won a major FIFA competition in their history, and Spain always seem to choke at the worst time.
So, will Spain choke once again in the World Cup?
Who Will be the Best Young Player in this World Cup?
Going into this World Cup, there will be many great young players that will be playing in their first ever World Cup.
From a player such as a Jozy Altidore and Giovani dos Santos or a Hugo Lloris or Giuseppe Rossi, this World Cup (just like every World Cup prior to this one) has some fantastic young players.
So, who will be the best young player in this World Cup?
What "Conspiracies" Will Arise due to Referee Decisions?
In every World Cup, there are always people who claim that certain people or events are fixed to happen by FIFA.
From the host nation (South Africa) getting some favorable calls to a favorite (Spain or England especially) getting wins when they clearly don't deserve one, people always call conspiracy when their nation loses.
So, what will be the next controversial decision to happen at this World Cup?
What Role Will Nelson Mandela Have on this World Cup?
The man that is most responsible for the new South Africa and for this World Cup to be taking place in South Africa, Nelson Mandela now finds himself as a 91-year-old man that is the unifying force of all South Africans.
But sadly, Mandela right now is not in the best of health, and it is uncertain if he will be making an appearance at any of the matches that will be taking place.
With that in mind, what role do you see Nelson Mandela having at this World Cup?
How Chippy will Germany and Ghana's Matchup on June 23 be?
At Soccer City on June 23, we could see the most physical match of the World Cup as Germany and Ghana meet.
The reason why this is true is due to the injury German captain Michael Ballack got against Ghana's Kevin-Prince Boateng in the FA Cup final, causing Ballack to miss the World Cup, and the German-born Boateng as a major target.
Add in the fact that Boateng's brother plays for Germany, and this matchup gets even more interesting.
So, how interesting will this clash be?
How will the Vuvuzela's Impact the World Cup?
For the first time in World Cup history, we will get to see the Vuvezela's that have already caused lots of controversy.
The instrument's (which are modeled after a horn that used to be used to get large groups together) has become a large part of the South African experience in terms of football.
After calls were made to ban it after the Confederations Cup, the plastic trumpet will be prominently used at this World Cup.
With that in mind, what impact will the Vuvuzela's have on this World Cup?
Who Will Win This World Cup?
The question that is pondered in every corner of the world by pretty much everyone is this: Who will win the 2010 FIFA World Cup?
This year, there are many nations that could make a legitimate claim of becoming the nation that will win the World Cup despite the fact that Spain and Brazil are the odds-on favorite to win the World Cup.
So, who do you think will win the World Cup?
How will South Africa Appear to the World After this World Cup?
After this World Cup ends on July 11, the world sadly will return to its current state and we will all wonder where this World Cup has went.
However, it will be interesting to see what will happen to South Africa after this World Cup.
Will it remain the same after the World Cup, or will it become a nation that will revert to its old self after the World Cup ends?