Group A: USA, Lesotho, Venezuela, Bosnia HerzegovinaThis year in Group A, we have some Unity Cup veterans with one of the new teams on the block. USA is back for another year, looking to avenge their 3 straight knockout round losses to Liberia and finally take home the Unity Cup. Venezuela is out for revenge, having missed the knockout rounds by tiebreakers last year. Bosnia and Herzegovina is back and will be looking to make it out of the group stage after their disappointing showing in 2018. We can see these 3 teams beating up on each other with Lesotho possibly making some noise. They’ll be looking to make a splash in their first run through the tournament, and what better way to enter the tournament than by upsetting USA. This should be an interesting group and we are excited to see what 2 teams make it out!
Staff Predictions: USA and Venezuela advance.
Group B: Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Palestine, LithuaniaIn Group B, we have the defending runner-ups and 3 relatively unproven teams. Cameroon was able to advance out of their group last year, but will they be able to sustain their success and do it again? Lithuania was stuck in a tough group last year with Sierra Leone, Belize, and Togo. We would say they got a much better draw this year, but they will have to compete with Ivory Coast and play their best against Cameroon to have a shot at advancing. Not much is known about Palestine, but they are 1-2-1 in friendly matches– their one win coming in a nail bitter over Argentina. It looks like they will compete in this group, but will they have enough to advance? It is almost certain that Ivory Coast will advance and look to recapture the Unity Cup, but who will join them?
Staff Predictions: Ivory Coast and Cameroon advance.
Group C: Sierra Leone, Sudan, Haiti, RomaniaIn Group C, we have a very top-heavy group, with Sierra Leone leading the way. Coming off of an early exit to their standards, Sierra Leone is looking to go on a deeper run in the Unity Cup knockout rounds this year. Their group, however, may not prepare them for what is to come in the later stages of the tournament. Both Sudan and Haiti missed the knockout rounds last year, finishing 3rd in their groups and with more goals allowed than goals scored. One of these teams, along with Romania, will have to sneak into the knockout rounds. The experts in the office believe Haiti will be the lucky team to advance but by the slimmest of margins in tiebreakers. Sierra Leone might run away with this group, but the battle for the 2nd seed in the group could be one of the most interesting finishes in this year’s Unity Cup!
Staff Predictions: Sierra Leone and Haiti advance.