South Africa a good bet to keep World Cup history alive?

1st June 2010 | World Cup Betting category: Football World Cup News
Football World Cup News

Despite World Cup football betting suggesting otherwise, are there just hints of South Africa being able to keep one World Cup record alive? World Cup history records that no host nation has gone out in the first round of the tournament, but that record looked seriously under threat, as the Bafana Bafana looked far from impressive over the past twelve months. So lost they looked, they have to have another change of personnel at the top as part of their World Cup preparations. It has only been 18 years since South Africa made their reappearance back onto the international scene, after being out in the wilderness because of political stances on apartheid. But on Monday, South Africa recorded their record result, as they thumped Guatemala 5-0 in an international friendly. Coached by Brazilian World Cup winning coach Carlos Parreira, there are signs that the hosts are getting their act together, after also beating South Americans Colombia in an International Friendly. The Colombia match was the first in the warm-ups, that Parreira could call upon all of his European stars, like West Ham’s Benni McCarthy. A well earned draw against Bulgaria had preceded that, and suddenly the Bafana Bafana do not look so far back in World Cup Betting.

South Africa raise the curtain on the World Cup on June 11th, with the opening match against Mexico. That is a Group A match, with the other opening day fixture coming from the same group between France v Uruguay. Betting on South Africa at the World Cup still means that you will be taking outside bets, as they are the long shot in group betting to qualify. But since Parreira returned to helm of South Africa, they have gone eleven games unbeaten since last November. Granted, because they automatically qualified for the World Cup as hosts, none of them have been competitive matches, but it still shows a lot of reserve. If they really have stepped up their game, then it could be a very tight affair in World Cup Group A. They are currently around 2/1 to qualify from the group, which is not too bad a bet with all things considered. They will have the massive home support behind them, and that could give them an extra man almost.

Midfielder Steven Pienaar is confident that the Bafana Bafana can cause some shocks at the World Cup. If their resilience shows against Uruguay and Mexico, then they could play their way into a real chance of keeping World Cup history alive. There are signs that South Africa, ruled out of all contention by pretty much all of the best bookmakers for betting on the World Cup, can make an impact. They may not be the most technically gifted side at the World Cup, but they have a lot of heart, and a lot of support. The build up has been long and patient, and while they are not going to win the World Cup outright, the hosts may well be worth keeping an eye on the individual match fixtures. The opener against Mexico has the most potential for an upset, as South Africa like to play with wing backs, and with Mexico being a free flowing team in attack, they are not likely to sit back and stifle all life out of South Africa. With the raucous home crowd behind them, it may be time to re-evaluate the betting chances of the 2010 host nation.
 




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