World Cup 2014: guide to Group D

Read Match of the Day's quick guide to all the teams in Group D, featuring England, Uruguay, Italy and Costa Rica

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ENGLAND | ITALY | URUGUAY | COSTA RICA

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ENGLAND

Nickname: The Tree Lions

Manager: Roy Hodgson

Captain: Steven Gerrard

FIFA ranking: 11

Strengths

Roy’s squad is buzzing with energy, pace and youthfulness – and it’s this dynamism that could blow away the aging legs of the Italians and the Uruguayans.

Weaknesses

England ALWAYS struggle in hot and humid conditions – and that’s exactly what they’ll face in Brazil’s tropical climate.

Star man

Wayne Rooney, age 28: This is Rooney’s fifth appearance at a major international tournament – he may still be waiting for his first World Cup goal, but his club form means he’s still the England player most feared throughout the world.

2014 squad lowdown

Most capped: Steven Gerrard, 109 caps

Top scorer: Wayne Rooney, 38 goals

Most represented club: Liverpool, 5 players

Likely formation: 4-3-3

URUGUAY

Formation: 4-4-2 (3-4-1-2)

Playing style: Counter-attack

Strengths: Scoring from set-pieces

Weaknesses: Defending against pace

Star man: Superstar striker Luis Suarez – they need him fit or it’s game over

ITALY

Formation: 4-3-3 (4-3-1-2, 4-3-2-1)

Playing style: Possession

Strengths: Organisation and tactical awareness

Weaknesses: Lack of pace in midfield

Star man: Midfield legend Andrea Pirlo – the key to their passing game

COSTA RICA

Formation: 5-4-1 (3-6-1)

Playing style: Defensive

Strengths: Playing neat and tidy football

Weaknesses: Keeping clean sheets

Star man: Levante keeper Keylor Navas – an incredibly athletic shot-stopper

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For loads more World Cup gossip, exclusive interviews and expert predictions get this week’s Match of the Day magazine, in all good newsagents.