Tuesday, 15 July 2014
FIFA World Cup - a summary
Below is a list of teams as ranked in top 16 (unless otherwise stated) on 5th June 2014 before the WC. Alongside is where they managed to get in the Cup.
1. Spain Didn't make it out of group.
2. Germany Won the final.
3. Brazil 4th
4. Portugal Didn't make it out of group.
5. Argentina 2nd
6. Switzerland Last 16 no further.
7. Uruguay Last 16 no further.
8. Colombia Quarterfinals no further.
9. Italy Didn't make it out of group.
10. England Didn't make it out of group.
11. Belgium Quarterfinals no further.
12. Greece Last 16 no further
13. USA Last 16 no further
14. Chile Last 16 no further
15. Netherlands 3rd
16 Ukraine (failed to qualify)
17. France Qualified and last 16 no further.
20. Mexico Qualified and last 16 no further.
22. Algeria Qualified and last 16 no further.
28. Costa Rica Qualified and last 16 no further.
44. Nigeria Qualified and last 16 no further.
So it's very good to see most of the top ranked 16 teams made the last 16, with the obvious exceptions of England, Spain (reigning World Champs), Portugal and Italy (Interesting also that three of those countries are considered the hotbeds for club football in the world.)
As usual World Cups of any sporting code throw up surprises and the last five teams mentioned separately above certainly surprised, none more so than Nigeria, the only team making the last 16 outside the top 32 ranked teams in the world.
The rankings do match current achievements though the demise of Spain and Portugal especially will be interesting to see when the new rankings come out. On paper then it was no surprise Germany won, Brazil and Argentina made the final four, leaving the only real surprise being the Netherlands finishing 3rd.
Great World Cup? Maybe, maybe not. Certainly a spectacle that provided high drama, dubious officiating, and that burgeoning Hollywooding, but yes I enjoyed what I saw and I saw plenty (thanks to time zones being in synch for once). Bring on 2018.