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We will have to do better than we did in previous world cups against the teams in our group as we lost to Italy in 1990 and to Uruguay in 1954. We did draw against Uruguay in 1966 though but that might not be good enough. We have never played Costa Rica before so we haven’t got any previous results to go on, but we probably should be able to beat them.

In previous world cups in South America we have not done that great.

We failed to qualify from the groups stages in the 1950 World Cup in Brazil beating Chile in our first match but losing to both the USA and Spain ended our competition.

In Chile in 1962 we narrowly got out of the group stages on goal average after losing to Hungary, beating Argentina and drawing against Bulgaria. In the quarter finals we came up against Brazil who beat us 3-1 and went on to win the world cup that year.

In Mexico 1970 we beat Romania and Czechoslovia to qualify for the quarter finals despite losing to Brazil. In the quarters we lost to West Germany 2-3 after extra-time.

We didn’t even qualify for the next world cup held in South America, Argentian 1978.

In the last world cup held in South America, Mexico 1986 we achieved what we had achieved in in 1962 and won one, drew one and lost one in the group stages. We beat Paraguay in the second round 3-0 before meeting up with Argentina in the quarter finals where after two Maradona goals one sublime and one that should never have been allowed we were knocked out again and as in 62 we were knocked out by the eventual champions.

A European team has never won a World Cup in South America before. Several have come close. Can we be the one team that manages it!

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