Friday, March 31, 2006

FIFA World Cup 06

Well the FIFA World Cup kicks off in Germany on June 9th with Germany facing off against Costa Rica in Munich. Other venues across Germany will be hosting games.

For those of you who don't understand how the World Cup works, or how teams are choosen heres an article I found that explains. It's a little old but it still works out the same.

The 5th in the World Ranked US Mens team will take to the pitch on June 12th against 2nd in the World Ranked Czech Republic in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.

Most Americans views soccer as just a sport played amongst grade-schoolers during the summer but throughout the rest of the world it is known as football and is the national sport. The World Cup is the biggest sporting event in the world; no, not even the Summer Olympics are bigger. Here is an overview on who's in what group and their world rankings in (#):

Group A: Germany(22), Costa Rica(25), Poland(26), Ecuador(38)
Group B: England(9), Sweden(16), Paraguay(33), Trinidad and Tobago(49)
Group C: Argentina(4), Serbia and Montenegro(46), Netherlands(3), Côte d'Ivoire(32) (aka Ivory Coast)
Group D: Mexico(7). Portugal(10), Angola(60), Iran(19)
Group E: Italy(12), Ghana(50), USA(5), Czech Republic(2)
Group F: Brazil(1), Croatia(19), Japan(18), Australia(44)
Group G: France(8), Switzerland(35), Korea Republic(31), Togo(58)
Group H: Saudi Arabia(34), Tunisia(24), Spain(6), Ukraine(42)

Now if you've read the article I linked to about how the World Cup Works you will know that that every team in a group will play each other once. Recieving 3pts for a win, 1 for a draw (tie), and 0 for a loss. The top 2 teams from each group go on to the Round of 16. I have looked at the groups and have attempted to predict the top 2 teams of every group (I would not bet $ on this).

Here are my predictions:
Group A: Germany will take top spot, followed by Poland whose only loss will come from the German side.

Group B: Even with England in a current coaching fiasco I believe they will go on along with Sweden

Group C: Argentina will destroy the other three teams and will definately advance. I think that Côte d'Ivoire will be underestimated and will advance along side Argentina, but I think that it will be close with Netherlands and Côte d'Ivoire being separated by a mere point.

Group D: No contest here Mexico, and Portugal will advance with either one of them possessing the top spot

Group E: Now this has to be the toughest group this year! And I can't wait to see how it turns out. 2nd ranked Czech Republic will definately take this group. The real battle I believe will be between the tough Italy and US teams. Now its hard not to be biased here being an American myself, but I do think that they (the US team) will take it and advance along with Czech Republic.

Group F: Brazil, like Argentina, will dominate this group; so the real challenge here is for second. I, believe the Australians could surprise the world, and they will; but I don't think they will advance. Croatia will put up a real battle, but I believe Japan will come out on top. So my picks Brazil and Japan.

Group G: France and Switzerland will pretty much own this group with France taking top honors and Switzerland following in a close second. Korea Republic will follow closely behind Switzerland, and will give them a hardtime.

Group H: Spain will go undefeated and take top honors in this group. Now the battle for second will be the real thing. Now I think Saudi Arabia will go on to the next round, but their gonna have a hell of a time getting there with Tunisia, and Ukraine in their way. I think Saudi Arabia will come out victorious but barely.

Okay there are my predictions for the group stages. Now if everything works out the way I predicted, the round of 16 is gonna be amazing, with some great matches to be had, for instance: Germany vs. England; Argentina vs. Portugal; Sweden vs. Poland, and especially USA vs. Brazil (definately a David v. Goliath game). Now making predictions at this stage gets really difficult and nerve-racking, but heres my take:

England take out Germany to face Argentina who will beat Portugal. England will then surprise Argentina and go on to the Semi-Finals

Czech Rep take out Japan to face France who will beat Saudi Arabia. Czech Rep will beat France To face England in the Semi Finals

England will beat Czech Republic to go on to the finals

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Poland will beat Sweden to face Mexico who will beat Serbia & Montenegro. Mexico will then destroy Poland to go to the Semi-Finals

Brazil narrowly beat USA to face Spain who also narrowly beats Switzerland. Brazil will again narrowly beat Spain to go to Semi-Finals vs Mexico.

Mexico will beat Brazil by 2 goals to go on to the Finals vs England

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This leaves Mexico vs England in the Finals. My predictions are that Wayne Rooney gets 2 goals, along with one from Steven Gerrard. Mexico will still manage to achieve victory with overall better saves. Prediction Mexico 4 - England 3

So Mexico Wins it all this time

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