Pies Classics: Top Seven Scariest World Cup Groups Of Death

Ollie Irish

2nd, June 2010

22 Comments

By Ollie Irish

Seven of the most chilling GoDs in World Cup history:

1. ARGENTINA, BRAZIL, ITALY – Group C, Second Phase, 1982 World Cup

Who made it out alive? Italy defeated both the South American superpowers, in two classic encounters (they beat Argentina 2-1 and Brazil 3-2, the latter being one of the World Cup’s greatest ever matches), to escape this particularly fatal little threesome. The Italians went on to win the World Cup final, and after escaping this group, they deserved it.

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2. ARGENTINA, HOLLAND, IVORY COAST, SERBIA & MONTENEGRO – Group C, 2006 World Cup

Who made it out alive? Argentina and Holland didn’t have too much trouble with this one, despite pre-tournament predictions that Serbia – who had qualified with ease – and Ivory Coast were very strong dark horses.

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3. ENGLAND, BRAZIL, USSR, AUSTRIA – Group 4, 1958 World Cup

Who made it out alive? England didn’t get through, despite not losing a match. They drew all three games but lost out to Brazil, the eventual winners, and USSR. Tough break.

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4. ARGENTINA, NIGERIA, ENGLAND, SWEDEN – Group F, 2002 World Cup

Who made it out alive? Sweden topped the group, with England sneaking through in second, thanks to a 1-0 win over the Argies (and David Beckham’s cathartic penalty – see photo).

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5. ARGENTINA, ITALY, FRANCE, HUNGARY – Group 1, 1978 World Cup

Who made it out alive? Italy and hosts Argentina, who went on to lift the trophy on home soil.

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6. USA, KOREA DPR, SWEDEN, NIGERIA – Group B, 2007 Women’s World Cup

Who made it out alive? Three of the top-five-ranked sides in women’s football met in the women’s World Cup. USA and Korea progressed at the expense of the third-ranked Swedes. For the record, Germany won the tournament, beating Brazil in the final.

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7. ITALY, GHANA, CZECH REPUBLIC, USA – Group E, 2006 World Cup

Who made it out alive? Italy and Ghana were pushed to the limit by the other two but emerged triumphant. The Italians won the tournament, proving again that it’s often a good thing to be tested in the group stages.

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Fletch says:

7771325

“I once marked Death, man-to-man. Ninety minutes of sheer hell for him, then he wouldnae even swap shirts, the wee bastard.”

A version of this post was first published in December 2009

Who will come out on top in this years group of death? Place your World Cup bet with Betfair.com today.

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