It’s time for the penultimate edition of Geronigo’s World Cup of Adventures – a series where we round up each nation who are competing in the World Cup this summer in terms of their chances and also how they rank when it comes to action and adventure activities. There may only be one more edition after this one, but worry not, World Cup fever will soon hit the nation with full force!
Since we covered Group F last week, it’s time for Group G, which features Belgium, Panama, Tunisia and the only Home Nation in this summer’s edition, England!
Belgium breezed through the qualifying rounds with spectacular ease as they managed to progress in unbeaten fashion. Manchester United’s Romelu Lukaku became Belgium’s record goalscorer as they scored 43 goals to reach the Russia this summer. However, friendly performances following the qualifying matches made the fans, pundits and even the players a bit wary about Belgium’s defensive frailties. With a solid squad on paper, The Red Devils should have no problem reaching the second round stages.
The flat lands of Belgium are perfect for cruising around on a bicycle whilst you take in the beautiful surroundings. But, if you are after something a bit more exhilarating, you can take to the skies in a Hot Air Balloon adventure across the lowlands. Or, why not try an aerobatic flight to increase those adrenaline levels!
Despite being Panama’s first ever World Cup qualification, this isn’t manager Hernán Darío Gómez’s first time – the Colombian has led four teams at World Cup finals. At 1000-1 odds, Los Canaleros aren’t likely to go far in Russia this summer. That being said, many expected them to not make the tournament in the first place. Stranger things have happened.
It’s good news for all you adrenaline seekers! Panama’s diverse climate makes it the ideal location to fulfil your action and adventuring needs! Kite surfing? Yep. Sky diving? Sure. Mountain biking? Absolutely. White Water Rafting? Definitely! The list could go on. Panama really is the adrenaline lover’s paradise.
The Eagles are back in the World Cup for the first time since 2006, thanks to manager Nabil Maâloul’s attacking tactics. The pick of the bunch is winger Youssef Msakni, who often carries the team, along with his fellow attack-minded forwards of Wahbi Khazri and Naïm Sliti. Just like Panama, the Tunisians are going to find it a tough task if they are to qualify to the next stage with relative ease.
Tunisia is known for its beautiful stretch of coastline which spans the North African continent. Making use of the calm, blue waters of the Mediterranean Sea, Tunisia is a perfect location to hone your skills or try out some new watersports. From sea kayaking and canoeing, to windsurfing, waterskiiing and sailing, you can pretty much do anything on water in Tunisia. We’re not so sure about walking on it, though!
The Three Lions enter this tournament with more optimism than usual, and that is down to manager Gareth Southgate’s fresh perspective on not just the player selection, but with the tactics too. With a new 3-4-2-1 formation in place, England look set to continue their fine unbeaten run in the qualifying stages for this World Cup. However, as is the trend with every major international footballing tournament involving England, disappointment – or even disaster – could be around the corner.
With a rugged coastline and differing terrains, England is packed full of activities and caters for even the most experienced adrenaline seekers amongst us. One of the most exhilarating activities is canyoning. One of the best places in the country to do this is Cumbria, in the north of England. This activity – which isn’t for the faint-hearted – involves abseiling and descending down some of the most spectacular gorges in the country. You can expect waterfalls, plunge pools and water. Lots of water!
It’s good news for the only Home Nation in the tournament if the bookmakers are to be believed, as they predict that the qualifiers from this group are likely to be Belgium and England. However we shouldn’t be so quick to rule out other Group G contenders Panama and Tunisia.
However, when it comes to adrenaline activities, there can surely be only one winner. Panama’s diverseness and dedication to action and adventure sports makes them the winner of the World Cup of Adventures for this group.
And that’s it for this week. We only have one more edition of our World Cup of Adventures to go, and we’ll let the football do the talking after that. Be sure to catch the action which begins in Russia on 14th June.