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  1. #1
    Lumpy Talbot Lumpy Talbot is offline

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    World Cup 2018 thread.

    Opening game Russia against Saudi Arabia on Thursday 14th June in Moscow after a tedious and self-referential opening ceremony with lots of elderly fat men in suits in the VIP boxes. There are 8 groups of four nations. To get going I'll lay out the groups and my predictions where I can for the group stages.

    Group A

    Russia
    Saudi Arabia
    Egypt
    Uruguay

    Hard to see anything other than Russia and Uruguay emerging here but Egypt may shock one of them on their day. However I think it will be a tedious group.

    Group B

    Portugal
    Spain
    Morocco
    Iran

    Should be Spain and Portugal emerging although Morocco are the wild card and have it in them to produce a shock result. Iran don't.

    Group C

    France
    Australia
    Peru
    Denmark

    Australia have the ability to ruin the hopes of at least two other teams in this group but would need to put in great team performances. It should be France and Denmark to go through but there is room on the bus home for a quietened big gun of the game.

    Group D

    Argentina
    Croatia
    Iceland
    Nigeria

    Possibly the most unpredictable group. Argentina should go through but are just as likely to get caught in a hot-tub the night before with some girls, Nigeria versus Croatia could be a wild game and Iceland may well have had their moment in the sun recently but would need to replicate the shield wall in this group to progress.

    Group E

    Brazil
    Switzerland
    Costa Rica
    Serbia

    Brazil obvious front-runners to go through, Switzerland everyone's favourite to go home as they are incredibly boring. Costa Rica and Serbia aren't boring but may well fall into a stupor playing Switzerland and one of them may slip up. It would be okay to see Brazil and Costa Rica through as at least they are likely to remember the goal at the other end of the pitch.


    Group F

    Germany
    Mexico
    Sweden
    South Korea

    Jeez. This is hard. Germany and either Mexico or Sweden to go through, but probably Sweden on headed goals against Mexico and South Korea. South Korea will be high tempo buzzing about but not much of an end product unless there is a secret breeding camp for rising salmon in the penalty box five miles south of Seoul about to be sprung on the world.

    Group G

    Belgium
    Panama
    Tunisia
    England

    Belgium one of the best teams in the world on paper. Unfortunately for Belgium association football is actually played on grass. This enigma wrapped inside a conundrum is as yet unresolved by Belgian coaches. If they do figure it out Belgium could top this group and odds drop dramatically but they are just as likely to huff and puff. England also a conundrum but psychologically need to get their players over the fear of being labelled as the fall-guy by the tabloids back home. England playing freely and to the strengths of their game at home would be challenging but as is so often the case the build-up paralyses any chance of natural expression and the phrase 'there is no easy game at this level' is seldom far away. Should be Belgium and England going through but both teams have an achilles heel often referred to as 'the opposition'.

    Group H

    Poland
    Senegal
    Colombia
    Japan

    No-one other than their fans actually cares.

    Other than that the cameramen will try to get us glimpses of pretty girls (probably very blond) in the crowd but not enough to annoy the politically correct. There will be sh1tloads of analysis pre, mid, and post games which at least gives employment to retired players in a sort of Royal Hospital way without the natty uniforms. There will be terrible suits, someone will go home in disgrace, outrage over refereeing decisions and the Russian hosts won't be able to resist spying on everyone.

    Germany will probably win it. Selah. The hog is in the tunnel alongside the many, many officials.

    The match schedules
    https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/football...le/group-stage

    Current odds as at 20th May for top scorer competition... https://www.oddschecker.com/football...top-goalscorer
    Last edited by Lumpy Talbot; 20th May 2018 at 10:51 AM.
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  2. #2
    Niall996 Niall996 is offline
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    Way too many countries and gutless corrupt FIFA regime continuing to allow rogue nations participate.
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  3. #3
    General Urko General Urko is offline
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    I wonder how Denmark will do, I suspect they will be on the first plane back and Serbia as well, even though both groups are not insurmountable!
    For once, Engerland seem to have realistic expectations and will probably make the QFs!
    Again a country from the elite small group that have already won it, will win it!
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  4. #4
    General Urko General Urko is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Niall996 View Post
    Way too many countries and gutless corrupt FIFA regime continuing to allow rogue nations participate.
    A 24 team Euro'16 which was a proposal originally made by The FAI and SFA did in no way detract from the quality of it, only one team was superfluous to requirements and that was Engerland!
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  5. #5
    Levellers Levellers is offline

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    I'm backing Spain.
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  6. #6
    Cruimh Cruimh is offline
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    Engerland winning the cup would be such a disaster .... they are still banging on about 1966....

    Mind you, RIP Ray Wilson
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  7. #7
    Niall996 Niall996 is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by General Urko View Post
    A 24 team Euro'16 which was a proposal originally made by The FAI and SFA did in no way detract from the quality of it, only one team was superfluous to requirements and that was Engerland!
    At least half the teams haven't a hope in hell of even getting out of their groups. They shouldn't be there. Pointless waste of everyone's time. The qualifiers are there to weed out the rubbish,
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  8. #8
    Northsideman Northsideman is offline
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    Luis Saurez 25-1 with Ladbrokes to be top scorer and in a group where he could run amok is a tempting bet.

    I am on but tempted to take some more.
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  9. #9
    Northsideman Northsideman is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Niall996 View Post
    At least half the teams haven't a hope in hell of even getting out of their groups. They shouldn't be there. Pointless waste of everyone's time. The qualifiers are there to weed out the rubbish,
    And please the sponsors and pay the crazy money to run the gig.
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  10. #10
    Cruimh Cruimh is offline
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    Quote Originally Posted by Northsideman View Post
    Luis Saurez 25-1 with Ladbrokes to be top scorer and in a group where he could run amok is a tempting bet.

    I am on but tempted to take some more.
    Odds that high because the chomper might not last the distance?
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