Ivory Coast, Colombia keen to shake up World Cup order

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The tragic murder of Colombia defender Andres Escobar after the team’s disappointing performance at the 1994 World Cup was a dark moment for a country obsessed with football.

It has been trying to shake this image off ever since and while the country has begun to revitalise its cities, the 2014 World Cup in Brazil represents the perfect opportunity to showcase itself to the football world.

Colombia will be at the tournament for the first time since 1998, and the community in Australia is as excited as those back home.

"This is the best team that we ever had, I wish I could be in Brazil, but I'm in Sydney, but we're going to support them and we're going to see them like we were there," said Jorge Avila.

The team is filled with a golden generation of talent, plying their trade in Europe’s top leagues.

While Monaco’s $90 million striker Radamel Falcao might miss the World Cup through injury, it still has world class talents like Jaime Rodriguez to lead the way in Brazil.

"He's so young but he controls the team, he marks the moments when the team has to attack or when it has to defend, he's like the leader in the team," said Juan Barona.

Colombia’s Group C rival Ivory Coast is another national with great potential.

While the team missed out on the second stage in 2006 and 2010, Melbourne Victory’s Ivorian defender Adama Traore is hopeful of better this time.

"The past two World Cup's we were in the group of death, but I think our group this year we can go into the second round," Traore said.

If both Ivory Coast and Colombia can fulfil their potential in Brazil, the old world football order could be set for a shakeup.

See some of Vitor's other community profiles here.

Source: SBS

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