World Cup Group H Preview



The World Cup group stage will conclude with Group H, which features one of the most intriguing dark horses of the tournament. Although Belgium is considered a sleeper, they’ll have to get out of the group first. 

Belgium

World Cup Group H Odds: -175 to win Group H

Many are tipping Belgium to pull off a surprising run, powered by the attacking prowess of Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku, who was injured in a friendly against Tunisia, but he should be fine for Brazil. The midfield is in good hands, but Marouane Fellaini needs to play like the guy we saw at Everton, not the one that transferred to Manchester United. Vincent Kompany is coming off an excellent season at Manchester City, but Thomas Vermaelen can be inconsistent in the middle of the defense. Thibault Courtois has just 17 caps and is 22 years old, but he did well in goal in helping Atletico Madrid to the Spanish league title and the Champions League final. After not qualifying for the last two World Cups, Belgium is hungry and this is a young and aggressive team that is confident in their abilities. 

Russia

World Cup Group H Odds: +200 to win Group H

Russia also missed the last two World Cups, and the national team doesn’t have a lot of household names since they all play in Russia, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any quality. Aleksandr Kerzhakov has 25 goals in 80 appearances for his country and will be counted on to put away chances, while Alan Dzagoev has been touted as the next big thing for a few years now and he is still just 23 years old. The midfield duo of Yuri Zhirkov and captain Igor Denisov are crafty and familiar with each other as teammates on Dynamo Moscow. There is plenty of experience at the back as well. Don’t sleep on Russia.

Korea Republic

World Cup Group H Odds: +550 to win Group H

South Korea is going to the World Cup for the eighth straight time, and they went to the round of 16 in 2010 in South Africa, and they won’t be an easy out. Park Chu-Young has had all sorts of troubles since going to Arsenal in 2011, but a good World Cup would likely earn him a move to a team where he would get playing time and not sent out on load. Ki Sung-Yeung is another interesting player as he will set the pace from midfield, and keeper Jung Sung-Ryong has 60 caps for his country. There are some questions along the back four, however. 

Algeria

World Cup Group H Odds: +2200 to win Group H

Algeria is back in the World Cup after failing to score a goal in 2010, but they allowed just two in three games and they are going to be set up to frustrate the opposition. Islam Slimani will probably start up front with Sofiane Feghouli providing some creativity from midfield. Captain Madjid Bougherra has to marshal the defense, but he has been known to lose his temper on occasion and he can’t afford to do that with Algeria, who are just looking to keep things respectable and avoid getting blown out by their opponents.