Algeria can reach knockouts, says Feghouli

Sofiane Feghouli is optimistic Algeria can defy the odds by advancing to the knockout stages at the upcoming FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Algeria have been drawn alongside World Cup dark horses Belgium, as well as Russia and South Korea, in Group H at the showpiece event.

A star-studded Belgium team, who are able to call upon the likes of Eden Hazard, Vincent Kompany and Romelu Lukaku, are favourites to make it out of the group, along with Russia.

But Algeria winger Feghouli says Vahid Halilhodzic's men are not going to Brazil for a holiday, believing they can progress beyond the group stages for the first time in their history after three unsuccessful attempts in 1982, 1986 and 2010.

"I think we've got a great chance of reaching the second round of the World Cup," the Valencia man told

"It's an open group, although Belgium are the favourites. They've got a team full of great players who are all doing well in the big leagues.

"All four teams could go through, but if we get our preparations right after a tough season, I feel things could swing in our favour."

Feghouli added: "We are very optimistic. I love challenges and I play to win.

"Our sole objective is to qualify, and all the players are determined and ready to excel themselves and play some entertaining football for our fans.

"Our results haven't been that great at previous World Cups and I just hope that Brazil will bring us some luck."

Algeria are scheduled to play Belgium in their opening World Cup fixture in Belo Horizonte on June 17.