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Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Eagles Learn Potential World Cup Opponents


The Eagles have learned their potential World Cup opponents after the draw for the tournament was held in Tokyo. Overall, there is no dream pool as any of the three potential pools the Eagles could find themselves in are stacked with very tough teams.

The first scenario would see the U.S. beat Canada this summer to qualify as Americas 1. The U.S. has never qualified as Americas 1 but on form have had the better of Canada recently. That would put them in Pool C with England, France, Argentina, and Oceania 2 which would be either Fiji, Samoa, or Tonga with Samoa looking the most likely right now. That's a difficult draw for the Eagles. They would be heavy underdogs against England, France, and Argentina while also being not favored to beat the Oceania side.

Take the jump to read more.

The second scenario involves the Eagles losing to Canada this summer and then beating Uruguay in the next round of qualifying to qualify as Americas 2. This would be a slightly more favorable draw in Pool D where they would face Australia, Wales, Georgia, and Oceania 1, which is looking like Fiji at the moment. They would be underdogs in all of the matches except for Georgia. Even though the Georgians automatically qualified for 2019 based on their position in 2015 the Eagles have had consistent success against them in recent years. The Eagles would also probably like their chances of upsetting Wales or Fiji more than France or Argentina.

The last scenario would involve the Eagles losing to both Canada and Uruguay but then qualifying as the repechage winner. That would put them in Pool B with New Zealand, South Africa, Italy, and Africa 1, which is likely Namibia. This pool would give them a chance to be favorites against Namibia and maybe with the chance to pull off the upset against Italy but would also see them as heavy underdogs against New Zealand and South Africa. Given history this is the least likely of the scenarios.

Fans shouldn't expect the Eagles to take a look at this draw and then try and pick and choose which works best for them. Even though Pool D is probably the the most obtainable in terms of wins the Eagles will now doubt want to qualify as Americas 1 in Pool C. When you get to the World Cup all matches are difficult and the Eagles will want to prove themselves against the best. If recent form is anything to go on the U.S. should find themselves as America 1 and in Pool C.

The pool the Eagles won't find themselves in is Pool A with Ireland, Scotland, Japan, Europe 1 (likely Romania), and the Play-off winner (likely Tonga). That is probably the most wide open pool.

Pool A: Ireland, Scotland, Japan, Europe 1, Play-off winner
Pool B: New Zealand, South Africa, Italy, Africa 1, Repechage winner
Pool C: England, France, Argentina, Americas 1, Oceania 2
Pool D: Australia, Wales, Georgia, Oceania 1, Americas 2

2 comments:

  1. I think I would rather take the America 2 spot. Better chance of finishing top 3 in pool

    ReplyDelete
  2. About as bad a draw as could have happened.

    ReplyDelete