Q&A: ITV World Cup frontman Adrian Chiles
23rd May 2014
ITV presenter Adrian Chiles is seriously looking forward to the big tournament getting underway in the 'greatest footballing nation in the world' on June 12
What are you most looking forward to about the World Cup in Brazil?
It's almost a ludicrous question - like asking what are you most looking forward to about collecting your lottery winnings? Or what are you most looking forward to about drinking this £1,000 bottle of wine?
A World Cup. In Brazil. What's not to die for? The greatest tournament in the world staged in the greatest footballing nation in the world. What an absolute privilege to be there.
Who do you think will win the World Cup and why?
I have a hunch that an outsider might win it this time. And by that I mean someone ranked alongside England or lower. My colleagues at ITV keep telling me I'm talking nonsense, that the best teams win the World Cup. And that's generally true. But I just wonder if someone could do what Denmark and, more recently, Greece did in the Euros. I know there's an extra knockout round to get through but this does seem to be the era of slightly inferior teams finding ways to win without having much of the ball. And look at the Champions League - not always by any means does Europe's best team win it and you've got to get through 13 games, not just seven to win that competition.
Which do you think will be the teams and players to look out for during the tournament?
If Aguero and Messi click then Argentina could well win. Neither of those players, for different reasons, by their standards, have had vintage seasons so perhaps they'll make everyone else pay dearly for that now. Other than that I think either Germany or Brazil will win.
What do you think the toughest challenge facing England will be this time around?
Getting out of the group will be hard. But a draw against Italy in the first game and we'll be on our way.
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Do you think England can win it and why/why not?
If the 32 teams played each other in a big league I reckon England would finish around eighth. But in a knockout competition I do believe they've got a chance. Clearly, we haven't covered ourselves in glory for the last few tournaments but neither have we had a scrap of luck. Sooner or later things are going to start going right for us. Get out of the group, and the next game is, on paper, not unwinnable. And then we're in the quarter final and anything, over three games, is possible.
Which players will be key for England?
I don't think many teams do well without a decent spine. And in Hart/Foster, Cahill, Gerrard and Rooney we have a good looking spine. Add to that some of the young bucks, and who knows. And in Roy we trust.