Former Manchester United striker Diego Forlan believes that England can win the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil this summer.
Indeed, there have been suggestions that the Three Lions will actually struggle to get out of their group, given the strength in depth of Italy and Uruguay.
While Italy have progressed under Cesare Prandelli over the last four years and have a balance squad of young and experienced players, the South American nation have a whole host of top-class footballers in every department, including Fernando Muslera in goal, Diego Godin in defence, Gaston Ramirez in midfield, and Forlan, Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani in attack.
England also have some well-known and established stars, such as Joe Hart, Wayne Rooney and Steven Gerrard, as well as talented youngsters like Jack Wilshere, Raheem Sterling and Ross Barkley. However, after years of being hyped up as one of the favourites whenever a major tournament came around, this time the Three Lions have been largely written off.
This, according to Forlan, is a mistake and he firmly believes that the 1966 World Cup winners can lift the trophy in July.
‘I hear what people say about Uruguay and it’s often complimentary’, he wrote in his FourFourTwo column. ‘We’ve earned that. I also know what English people say about England and it surprises me. I’ve heard that criticism, and openings that England have no chance of winning. That’s not how I see it...
'Like Brazil, England still have an aura. Perhaps that’s due to history, but the team is full of strong players in one of the best leagues in the world. Jose Hart is a great keeper; Rooney, Gerrard and Lampard are top players. I think England could win the World Cup, but maybe the English can’t see this’.