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One of the greatest footballers of all-time has predicted that La Furia Roja will become the first European nation to win the World Cup outside of their own continent.

Portuguese legend, Eusebio has lavished praise on Vicente del Bosque’s Spain team and he believes that the current Euro 2008 winners will go on to claim the 2010 World Cup. But he challenged England's now infamous success in the 1966 edition.

Spain are the strong favourites to win the World Cup in South Africa,” he said during an International Football Forum in Brasilia.

“I say this with respect to the likes of Argentina, Brazil and the other national teams, but as I live in Europe and I have been watching many of Spain’s matches, I can assure you that they are a great force and their team is formed by a lot of fantastic young players,” he added.

The Black Panther then went on to question the legality of England’s triumph in the 1966 World Cup on home soil.

“They won with a goal that never existed,” he said. “And in the quarter-finals against Argentina, the referee sent off one of the Argentineans, [Antonio] Rattin for no reason whatsoever.

“Ofcourse, the English players have nothing to do with the controversies. It’s simply because England organised the World Cup and they did it so well that the trophy stayed in the country,” he concluded.

For the 2010 World Cup qualifying campaign, Spain and England are the only two sides in the UEFA section to have won all of their first four qualifying games. La Seleccion will host Turkey on March 28 while the Three Lions will entertain Ukraine on April 1.

KS Leong, Goal.com

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