Friday, June 25, 2010

The Final Group

We’re down to the final group in the World Cup. The Netherlands breezed by and Japan upset Denmark in Group E and Brazil and Portugal moseyed on it with a 0-0 tie in Group F.

That’s leaves me at 9-5, which is pretty pathetic, with only Group H to play. I picked Spain and Chile to advance here. The fly in the ointment is Switzerland.

If Switzerland beats Honduras they will have 6 points and Spain MUST beat Chile to advance. That would leave all three teams with 6 points and the question becomes the margins of the victories.

If Spain wins by more than one goal, or if Switzerland wins by more than one goal, Switzerland would advance with Spain based upon goal differential. If both games are determined by exactly one goal, then it will depend upon how many goals were scored.

Switzerland would have to score at least 2 goals more than Chile in order to advance based upon goals scored. If they score the same number, or Chile scores more, then Chile would advance based upon goals scored. If Switzerland scores precisely one more goal than Chile then Chile would advance based upon beating Switzerland head to head.

If Switzerland draws with Honduras, then Chile advances regardless of what happens in its game and Spain advances with a win or a draw. If Spain loses as well, then it depends upon the margins of loss.

Spain currently has a 1 goal differential lead over Switzerland and a 1 goal goals scored lead over Switzerland. Switzerland would have to at least even up those tie breakers because it has the head to head advantage because it beat Spain. Honduras, trailing by 3 and 4 goal differentials respectively is highly unlikely to get into the mix.

France, the #9 team, and Italy, the #5 team, are already gone. Could Spain, the #2 team be next?

Assuming Spain manages to advance, they will play either Brazil or Portugal in the first knockout round so either #1 Brazil, #2 Spain, or #3 Portugal will be gone after the round of 16.

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