FIFA World Cup predictions from the Tour de Suisse peloton

André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) wins stage 2 of the Belgium Tour

André Greipel (Lotto Soudal) wins stage 2 of the Belgium Tour (Image credit: Bettini Photo)

Stage 6 of Tour de Suisse coincided with the first game of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Ahead of the stage, Cyclingnews spoke with a variety of riders at the start line for an insight into who they will be supporting, and who they think will win in Russia over the next four weeks.

Julien Vermote (Dimension Data), Belgium – supporting Belgium

Will you be supporting Belgium in the World Cup?

“Of course, I hope they will have a good tournament. Everyone in Belgium will be hoping they win the World Cup, but it’s not so easy.

“It would be nice if Belgium could win it. It would be amazing for the country, but first we have to get to final. We have a strong team there, I’m looking forward to it actually.”

Koen de Kort (Trek-Segafredo), Netherlands – supporting Australia (he thinks)

“I will be following it even though my country is not in it. I know the football a little bit in Australia, I follow it in the off-season when I’m there, obviously. I think they’ll be the team I’m going to support.

Who do you think will win?

“I think Germany will win it."

Marcus Burghardt (Bora-Hansgrohe), Germany – supporting Germany

“If I have time, for sure, if Germany are playing I will watch them. We will see if they can win it. Their first matches look pretty tough, but Germany has a squad for matches and normally they get better from match to match, so I think they have a good chance to win.”

Jack Haig (Mitchelton-Scott), Australia – supporting a good time

“I don’t really follow football that much. I’ll watch the odd game here and there, go to the pub just to get out of the house really and enjoy it.”

Owain Doull (Team Sky), Wales – supporting England begrudgingly

“I would be watching it more if Wales made it in to be honest. I will support England, begrudgingly, it’s one of those things. I’m looking forward to it actually, it’s a good way of filling your day after training.

“I think it’s between Brazil and Germany, but I think Germany because they’re so clinical.”

Chris Juul-Jensen (Mitchelton-Scott), Denmark – supporting Denmark

“Of course, I’ll be supporting Denmark. It’s a good thing I’m not at the Tour really as it might be a bit awkward with the team and Denmark being in the same group as Australia.”

Tim Wellens (Lotto-Soudal), Belgium – supporting Belgium

“I’m not watching it for the moment. After Tour de Suisse maybe. I’ll be supporting Belgium of course.”

Who will win?


Pavel Sivakov (Team Sky), Russia/France – supporting France

“Today is the first match of the World Cup with Russia playing, but I don’t think we will catch it, that’s when the race will finish. I’ll follow it though.”

Who do you think will win?

“Maybe France. I live in France and also part French. Russia have no chance.”

Andre Greipel (Lotto-Soudal), Germany – supporting Germany

Will you be supporting Germany?

“What can I say, of course.”

Do you think you’ll win?

“I don’t think they will go as far as they did last time. I hope that they will go far, but I will go for France this year.”

Ian Stannard (Team Sky), England – supporting no one

Will you be watching the World Cup?

“Probably not, no. Not a massive fan like Luke and G.”

Sep Vanmarcke (EF Education First-Drapac), Belgium – supporting no one

Will you be watching the World Cup?

“No, I’m not really into football.”

Sonny Colbrelli (Bahrain-Merida), Italy – supporting Spain

Will you be watching the World Cup?

“Italia muori, forza Espana.”

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