Predictions: Day 2
Two sides that have never met in this tournament before kick off the day at Port Elizabeth. Korea has had a pretty good buildup but it all came a-cropper in a loss to Belarus and then, entirely understandably, a 1-0 defeat at the hands of Spain in their final tuner. At least they didn't have to endure being robbed at their team hotel, as three Greek players were this week. The edge may well be Greece's height up front against a smallish but speedy South Korean team.
Prediction: Greece 1, South Korea 0
Argentina vs Nigeria, 10 a.m. ET
Argentina has dented Nigeria twice in the finals, a 2-1 win over the Super Eagles in 1994 and a 1-0 victory eight years ago. They've won five straight matches including a one-sided 5-0 drubbing of Canada last month, and have a big edge in star power. Nigeria were rocked by the injury defection of midfielder Jon Obi Mikel and will bring a more defensive approach with his absence. They have forwards, but distribution is questionable.
Prediction: Argentina 2, Nigeria 0
England vs. USA, 2:30 pm ET
After some friendly jousting in the press, one of the most anticipated matches of the first round should contain extra fire. The questions here all revolve around England – will they come out firing, or fold back as they have depressingly chosen to do in recent tournaments. The U.S. comes in unfancied and unburdened by pressure. They can absorb or attack – both tactics that they manage well. Highly anticipated first round matches rarely amount to much. Expect this one to be the exception.
Prediction: England 2, USA 1