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BBC's ten World Cup pundits pick their tournament favourite - and there's a clear winner

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The World Cup is just 24 hours away from our television screens.

After a couple of weeks of no live football to sink our teeth into, fans will be treated to 64 games over a month.

It looks set to be a fiercely competitive tournament, with a number of high-profile nations capable of lifting the Jules Rimet trophy come July 15.

Brazil - five-time winners of the tournament - arrive as favourites, with Germany, Spain and France behind them.

Then you have Argentina and Portugal, who could both do a lot of damage as they possess the two finest players in the world in Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo.

And lastly there's the chasing pack in England, Belgium, Colombia and Uruguay, all of whom boast impressive squads and arrive in promising form.

A lot of teams to pick from, so it was interesting when the BBC's star-studded punditry lineup was asked who they thought would emerge victorious that one team received five of the ten votes.

The team? The Germans, of course.

Regardless of their average form heading into the tournament, including a 2-1 loss to Austria, five of the ten experts believe Joachim Low's side will retain the trophy in Russia.

FBL-WC-2018-GER-PRESSER

Below you can see Rio Ferdinand, Frank Lampard and Jermaine Jenas' reasons for picking Die Mannschaft - Gabby Logan and Alex Scott also opted for Low's outfit.

Ferdinand: "I don't think there's a clear front-runner. France have got the talent but I'm leaning towards Germany because of their experience."

Lampard: "France and Belgium might be the two strongest sides in the tournament in terms of individuals but I would go with Germany to win it because of how good they are as a team.

"They also have a winning mentality. They will come into the tournament thinking they are going to win it, while we are doubting ourselves. That means a lot at this level."

FBL-WC-2018-GER-PRESSER

Jenas: "I will be surprised if Germany don't win it. They showed the depth they have by winning the Confederations Cup last year with what I would call their B team and they have always been so consistent at major finals.

"They get themselves into a position where it doesn't come down to a bit of luck. They will be in Russia to seize the moment."

Elsewhere, Gary Lineker and Kevin Kilbane nominated Spain, while Alan Shearer - along with Mark Lawrenson - opted for Brazil.

We reckon Lineker and Kilbane might regret their choice after Julen Lopetegui's sacking...

And then all on his own was Chris Sutton, with the former Blackburn Rovers striker taking a punt on Didier Deschamps' France side.

No one for England, guys? 

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Topics:
Football
Joachim Low
Uruguay Football
Portugal Football
Colombia Football
Russia Football
France Football
Spain Football
Germany Football
Argentina Football
Brazil Football
Belgium Football
England Football
Lionel Messi
Cristiano Ronaldo

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