Dutch head coach Louis van Gaal leads his team’s training session in Lagos, Portugal, last month.  Photograph: Koen van Weel  / EPA

Manager: Louis van Gaal Best finish: Second (1974, 1978, 2010) World Cup record: Played 49, Won 26, Drawn 12, Lost 11 Hi(...)

Japan players huddle during a send-off ceremony for the World Cup  in Tokyo on May 25th.  Photograph: Toru Hanai / Reuters

Manager: Alberto Zaccheroni    Best finish: Second rounds (2002, 2010)    World Cup record: P 17, W 4, D 4, L 9(...)

 Vicente del Bosque talks with his Spanish players during a training session   at Las Rozas Sports City in Madrid, Spain, last month. Photograph: Alberto Martin / EPA

Manager: Vicente Del Bosque Best finish: Winners (2010) World Cup record: P 59, W 29, D 12, L 18 History Once the perennial under-a(...)

 Yaya Toure may be prone to a bit of a strop off the pitch but on it he’s the real deal. Photograph:  Nick Potts/PA Wire

Manager: Sabri Lamouchi   Best finish: Group stages (2006, 2010)    World Cup record: P 9, W 3, D 1, L 5 (...)

Manager: Jorge Luis Pinto Best finish: Second round (1990) World Cup record: Played 14, Won 5, Drawn 3, Lost 6 History Costa Rica’(...)

Uruguay’s Luis Suarez, El Pistolero, love him or hate, he’s some player.  Photograph: Enrique Castro-Mendivil / Reuters

Manager: Oscar Tabarez Best finish: Winners (1930, 1950) World Cup record: P 51, W 20, D 12, L 19 History Hosts of the first World (...)

Australia’s Tim Cahill holds the hopes of a nation on his shoulders.  Photograph: Jason Reed / Reuters

Manager: Ange Postecoglou Best finish: Second Round (2006) World Cup record: P 13, W 2, D 3, L 8 History By far the most inexperien(...)

Greece’s Kostas Mitroglou (r), Kostas Manolas (c) and Georgios Samaras (l) training  in Athens last month.  Photograph: Yorgos Karahalis / Reuters

Manager: Fernando Santos   Best finish: Group stages (1994, 2010)    World Cup record: P 9, W 2, D 1, L 6  (...)

Oribe Peralta (left) will be a key player for  Mexico in Brazil.  Photograph: Henry Romero / Reuters

Manager: Miguel Herrera Best finish: Quarter-finals (1970 and 1986) World Cup record: Played 53, Won 14, Drawn 14, Lost 25 History (...)

Andrea Pirlo remains the key man for  Italy. Photograph: Claudio Villa/Getty Images

Manager: Cesare Prandelli Best finish: Winners (1934, 1938, 1982, 2006) World Cup record: Played 83, Won 45, Drawn 21, Lost 17 History (...)