Algeria – World Cup 2010 – Betting
Manager: Rabah Saadane
Captain: Yazid Mansouri
FIFA World Ranking: 27
World Cup Appearances: 3
Best World Cup: Round 1 – 1982, 1986
Algeria Team Profile
The Algerians will end a drought of 24 years when they touch down in South Africa for the finals of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, after their 1-0 win over Egypt in a one-off play-off match secured their status in the biggest global sporting spectacle. They are, however, preparing for their third finals appearance after playing at the 1982 World Cup in Spain and again four years later Mexico. On both occasions, though, Algeria failed to make it past the group stages and will have their work cut out qualifying up against the might of England, the industrious USA and a tricky Slovenia. Can coach Rabah Saadane inspire Algeria to a new personal best – qualification from Group C in South Africa?
Rabah Saadane, a 64 year-old Algerian with nearly 30 yeats of managerial experience under his belt, guided Algeria to their first World Cup appearance in 24 years, but 2010 in South Africa will be his third stint as at the helm of Algeria in the finals, doing so previously back in 1982 and again in ’86, with the Algerian hierarchy recruiting Saadane’s services purely for the purpose of the finals. In all, this will be Saadane’s fifth separate stint as Algeria coach, although he’s currently enjoying his longest spell after a five year stay with the Algerian national team.
When not at the Algeria helm, Rabah Saadane has focused his international knowledge and nous on domestic football within the African and Asian continents, even masterminding an African Champions League title with Casablanca of Morocco in the 90’s. He’s man a nation clearly entrusts, but after two previous failed attempts to guide Algeria from the groups and into the knock-out stage of a World Cup, will Saadane’s plans be foiled once again for the third time in a row.
Algeria Key Players
From a nation which hasn’t participated in the finals of a World Cup in 24 years, Algeria can make use of some useful individuals, none more so than their Premiership stars. Nadir Belhadj is a bright spark down the left-flank, currently with Portsmouth, possessing plenty of pace and agility, and will provide the forwards with some decent service. In regards to Algerian forwards, Rafik Saifi, a player which plies his trade in France with FC Istres, will carry the burden of a relatively unknown Algerian attack. His 19 international goals in 60 caps makes him a stand-out forward selection for coach Rabah Saadane, although his lack of height and the fact he’s now 35 years-old could see him struggle to assert himself inside the final third against some physically able defenders. Karim Ziani, similar to Belhadj, could be a thorn in the side of some of Algeria’s Group C opponents, with his blistering pace a big asset for Algeria, but it will be central-midfielder and Algeria captain Yazid Mansouri which will look to be the calming influence on a camp which could be forgiven for simply savouring the dizzy height of a World Cup. With 65 caps to his name, Mansouri will head to South Africa with Algeria as the most capped player in the squad, although he’s never scored for his country.
Nickname: Les Fennecs (The Desert Foxes)
An abundance of speed and natural agility make Algeria a tricky customer, a side no-one in their right mind should underestimate at the finals. Several of the Algerian first-team have seen their talents recruited by clubs all around Europe, thus proving Algeria have some dangerous and talented individuals. Down the wings, Ziani and Belhadj can be a nuisance, two marauding wingers with absolutely no fear when it comes to charging down the flanks. While after watching a few of their displays during qualifying, they are a team which prefer to play on the counter, putting their raw pace to good use on the break.
There are more than enough niggles with the Algerians to make one seriously reconsider any potential bet, with their lack of world-classindividuals, lightweight defence and a team full of Algerian based players all a worry. However, our biggest concern with Algeria is their decision making in the final, as well as their general finishing.
We have little doubt Algeria will be a troublesome little outfit in South Africa, even against the more equipped nations. They will bomb down the flanks using their speedy wingers and full-backs to sprint past their markers and reach the touchline in a bid to deliver a good cross, but we watched several hapless performances from Algeria where their finishing was appalling. If ever a side thrived off fluffing their lines it’s Algeria. In those moments were composure and nerve are needed, we wouldn’t have any confidence in Algeria’s forward having an awful lot of either.
Of course, the lack of strength in depth is a huge negative and a factor which will eventually lead to their demise in South Africa.
Algeria Qualification for the World Cup
Goals Scored: 10
Goals Conceded: 4
World Cup Potential: 1/5
Algeria will show glimpses of their attacking threat, mainly be virtue of their quick breakaways, but that’s about it. Lively on the break, but unconvincing in the final third and far too weak in defence means Algeria will come unstuck soon enough. Algeria simply don’t have the required talent to remain competitive throughout, and their main aim in South Africa will be to leave with some pride in tact, hopefully by putting in some spirited displays against England and USA. We don’t see them bypassing Group C, as the USA and England look the likely candidates for qualification, while Slovenia will be the crunch game for the Algerian’s as they aim to avoid leaving South Africa empty handed. They’ll do well to pick up some points, while a shock progression into the last-sixteen stage of the competition looks just about impossible.
Algeria World Cup Betting Odds
Algeria to win the World Cup: 2000 PaddyPower
Before the World Cup the odds on Algeria were 600/1
Official Algeria World Cup Squad
Fawzi Chouachi (ES Sétif)
Lounes Gaouaoui (ASO Chlef)
M’bohi Rais Ouheb (Slavia Sofia)
Abdelkader Laifaoui (ES Sétif)
Madjid Bougherra (Glasgow Rangers)
Carl Medjani (Ajaccio)
Rafik Halliche (CD Nacional)
Anther Yahia (VfL Bochum)
Haib Belaid (Boulogne)
Nadir Belhadj (Portsmouth FC)
Djamel Mesbah (Lecce)
Hassan Yebda (Portsmouth FC)
Mehdi Lacen (Racing Santander)
Yazid Mansouri (FC Lorient)
Adlene Guedioura (Charleroi)
Ryad Boudebouz (Sochaux)
Djamel Abdoun (Nantes)
Fouad Kadir (Valenciennes)
Karim Ziani (VfL Wolfsburg)
Abdel Kader Ghezzal (AC Siena)
Rafik Djebbour (AEK Athens)
Rafik Saifi (Istres)
Karim Matmour (Monchengladbach)
last update: 18 June 2010
World Cup 2010 Algeria Fixtures – Group C
|Date - Time||Group||Match||Result|
|12/06 - 19.30||C||England - USA||1-1|
|13/06 - 12.30||C||Algeria - Slovenia||0-1|
|18/06 - 15.00||C||Slovenia - USA||2-2|
|18/06 - 19.30||C||England - Algeria||0-0|
|23/06 - 15.00||C||Slovenia - England||0-1|
|23/06 - 15.00||C||USA - Algeria||1-0|
World Cup 2010 Group C - Table
|Rank||Team||Matches / Points|
|1||USA||3 Matches / 5 Points|
|2||England||3 Matches / 5 Points|
|3||Slovenia||3 Matches / 4 Points|
|4||Algeria||3 Matches / 1 Point|