Wednesday, June 9, 2010
FIFA 2010 World Cup: First Round Predictions
Since Brazil (pronounced Bra-seal, by non-Anglos) cut Ronaldinho, DBSF can only name one player in the World Cup, Clint Dempsey, and that's just because ESPN was doing a segment on him when DBSF's remote was on a week-long sabbatical beneath a couch cushion. Needless, to day DBSF hasn't seen too much futbol in the last few weeks/ months/ years (basically since the last World Cup).
Of course, this doesn't prevent DBSF from meta-analyzing other high-Google return websites providing such predictions, and offering them as his own analysis. So, coming out of the first round DBSF likes:
Group A: France, Mexico
Although Uruguay is rated one spot above Mexico, DBSF is going with his gut on this being a good year for May-he-ko. The other team in group A, South Africa, is ranked 83 in the world. There are 32 teams in the World Cup. Mathematically speaking, things don't look great for them.
Group B: Argentina, Greece
The other two teams, Nigeria and North Korea, lack the governmental stability and socioeconomic standards that DBSF looks for in most Baltimore street-gangs let alone countries. DBSF has to believe that for Nigeria and North Korea even to make the WC each country made some questionable resource allocation decisions with respect to a) supporting the national futbol club, or b) doing something about extreme poverty.
Group C: Estados Unidos, Good Britain
DBSF knows what you're thinking, 'Great analysis, way to pick only higher seeds.' But, there's a method to his sanity. England is perennially a top ten team so despite his angst over the Royal Family and Mr. Bean DBSF has to put them in. Estados Unidos is in because of the aforementioned documentary on Clint Dempsey that was both touching and motivational. If you saw it you would probably have Estados Unidos in whatever the World Cup calls the Final Four.
Group D: Germany, Australia
This is a tough group. Ghana is tempting and Serbia is ranked 15 in the world. But the Germans are a powerhouse and DBSF feels that, like Mexico, this is the Aussies' year.
Group E: Netherlands, Cameroon
DBSF didn't even know they played soccer in the Netherlands, but apparently FIFA has them ranked fourth (Author's note: a quick Wikipedia search revealed that the Netherlands are in fact a country and not one of those nebulous regions like the 'Balkans'.) The FIFA analysis says Japan is rebuilding, which sounds believable, and DBSF believes--probably mistakenly--that Denmark was a progenitor of the wooden clog, footwear that represents the antithesis of futbol.
Group F: Italy, Paraguay
Wait, there's a difference between Slovakia and Slovenia? For the sake consistency and minimizing confusion, what would it hurt to combine these two countries? Italy's Italy and Paraguay should be good by its nature since it borders Brazil. The New Zealenders will likely party too much the night before and oversleep for at least one first round match. Probably two though.
Group G: Brazil, Portugal
This was just a bad draw for South Korea and the Ivory Coast (aka Côte d'Ivoire, pronounced--at least to DBSF--Coat dee Ev-waaaa) in getting the number one and three ranked teams in the world. In 2006, Côte d'Ivoire showed they're ability, but Group G is likely going to be about Brazil, Portugal and a one game battle for third place.
Group H: Chile, Switzerland
Upset pick of the first round--world ranked number two Spain going down! Of course if Spain does go down this will probably bode unwell for the rest of the world as the fear of contagion of Greece's economic collapse affecting other larger European economies, like Spain, will become a reality when the entire Spanish population stops functioning/ working/ eating out of melancholy and an infinite sadness caused by their team not advancing. GDP will drop proportionally. Chile finished second behind Brazil in the South American qualifiers (so basically first), and supposedly Switzerland has some explosive young talent. (Of course if you didn't live in Switzerland DBSF doubts you would know this since the country is 41K square miles. Pennsylvania is 46K to give you some perspective.)