World Cup Day 8 Thread

Submitted by Salinger on June 21st, 2018 at 7:58 AM

Denmark v Australia @ 8am ET

France v Peru @ 11am ET

Argentina v Croatia @ 2pm ET

Denmark won in a squeaker against Peru, France was underwhelming and Argentia "lost" to Iceland. On paper the Argentina v Croatia game seems to be the the primetime show for the day, but I wouldn't be surprised if we see some fireworks in that France/Peru matchup. France v Peru will be a more interesting game than it seems on the off. Vamos!

Comments

Wolverine862

June 21st, 2018 at 8:29 AM ^

Yea I agree, I think the France v Peru game is going to be tight.  Peru are not afraid of anyone and they play to win, which after seeing some of the foul fest games, and super defensive games, is pretty refreshing. France are so fickle and if Peru get an early goal or keep them under pressure, it could be a really good game

Whole Milk

June 21st, 2018 at 9:45 AM ^

These two afternoon matches are super intriguing to me. I decided to hop on the Croatian bandwagon before the tourney, hoping they can get a win and seal up their fate in the round of 16. Also would like to see Peru snag a point and keep their hopes alive. 

skurnie

June 21st, 2018 at 1:22 PM ^

Really disappointing for Peru...should have beaten Denmark on Saturday were good enough for a draw today. A cruel game, same as Morocco found out yesterday. 

Hope it's not another 36 years before Peru is back. 

skurnie

June 21st, 2018 at 2:08 PM ^

Agreed--some low percentage shots (though that one went off the bar) and just missing the final touch on passes near the box. Guerrero needed to convert that chance early on. His first touch looked off today and Saturday...he hasn't played much at all since the suspension and it showed.

I thought Farfan should have started alongside him. 

stephenrjking

June 21st, 2018 at 2:58 PM ^

One of the great crimes in sports history is how Argentina managed to squander 8-12 glory years with a good roster and one of the all-time great players ever by utilizing tactics apparently designed by a local madman with his own three hands on the back of a napkin. 

TrueBlue2003

June 21st, 2018 at 3:01 PM ^

The standings in Group C are exactly why I think 3 team groups will work far better than 4 team groups.

There was an argument earlier about how disastrous it will be to have only three group games such that one game will be played last, but the situation still happens ALL THE TIME that two teams going into the final game know what mutually beneficial result they need and have the opportunity to collude.

Current Group C standings:

France 6pts

Denmark 4pts

Australia 1pt

Peru 0 points.

France and Denmark already know a tie gets them both to the knockout stage.  If they wanted to collude, they easily could. 

It doesn't matter that they don't know the result of Australia-Peru. They still know a draw moves them both forward.  In fact, it's potentially WORSE that they don't know the result of the the other game because they'd be more likely to play it safe with a tie.

If the Australia-Peru game happened earlier and Peru beat Australia, Denmark wouldn't have to worry about possibly being eliminated.  They'd already clinch advancement and could go for the win without worrying about losing.

Someone last week shared a reddit analysis that claimed collusion/shady incentives could only happen if a group is 4, 4, 1, 1 going into the final day but that's completely false.

TrueBlue2003

June 21st, 2018 at 7:11 PM ^

Well, it's two more games than they otherwise would have played with 32 teams in it.  And don't get me wrong, I am absolutely against expansion in general.

I'm merely stating that the three team group with only three games lends itself to fewer games that don't matter since a team can't clinch anything before their last game.

stephenrjking

June 21st, 2018 at 3:53 PM ^

The current tie-breaker rules are available here:

Goal difference is and would be the first tie-breaker, followed by total goals scored (ie a team that has a 3-3 draw is ranked ahead of a team with a 1-1 draw). But, assuming that there all three teams are 1-0 by matching 1-0 scores (not at all improbable) it would then go to: fair play points, then drawing of lots. 

Fair play points are determined giving teams negative scores for each yellow and red cards. The advantage here is that it penalizes teams for being dirty and is much less likely to involve tied. The disadvantage is that it's a pretty narrow criteria, and a team could easily lose by a cheap (and somewhat random) yellow card or two that is based entirely on the subjective level of intensity of the referee. 

If things are still even after that, they draw lots. Seriously. I can't wait for the first team to get eliminated by drawing lots.

TrueBlue2003

June 21st, 2018 at 7:32 PM ^

"Fewer matches means less chance for separation."

And that's exactly why three team groups leads to better soccer.  You can't separate in your first two games and then coast (thus potentially screwing the teams that were unlucky enough to draw you in the first two games when another team got to play you last when you were sitting your stars).

We don't want separation!  We want every game to matter and with just three games, they'll all matter.

Even if a team loses the first two games and is eliminated, the teams playing the final game will be able to play for the top seed without worry of losing.

I haven't run through all the permutations in my head but I think it'll make for higher quality play. 

TrueBlue2003

June 21st, 2018 at 7:26 PM ^

No, these are pretty common.  Multiple groups per Cup are generally in a situation in which the third game for one or both teams doesn't really matter and competitive integrity could be compromised (even if it's just resting top players by a team that has clinched).

If Iceland beats Nigeria tomorrow, Group D will be in the exact situation.

In Group E: If Serbia beats Switzerland and Brazil beats Costa Rica, that group will be in the same situation.

 

 

 

jmblue

June 21st, 2018 at 3:03 PM ^

Watching the replay of the French goal, Giroud really scored - his shot was clearly heading in when Mbappé poached it.

 

 

stephenrjking

June 21st, 2018 at 3:13 PM ^

Can't blame Mbappe there, the ball isn't in the net, you don't hold back just to give another guy a stat. You make sure.

And note that Mbappe's celebration was personally muted, he wasn't acting like it was all him there. I think he was looking for Giroud and Pogba to credit them. 

stephenrjking

June 21st, 2018 at 3:12 PM ^

OS-GOOOOOOD

Wow. Argentina now under the gun after a Karius-level goaltending mistake.

On the upside they'll really have to press now. Man, I'd like to see Messi actually get a chance to do something.

J_Dub

June 21st, 2018 at 3:46 PM ^

No red card for purposely kicking a player who is on the ground during a dead ball!?  Soccer is ridiculous.

BTW, Freakonomics had a great podcast a few days ago on the World Cup that hits home-field advantage, ref bias, bribery - all the good soccer topics.

stephenrjking

June 21st, 2018 at 3:55 PM ^

Messi, in my opinion, has been really ill-served by his team. No way an elimination here isn't a big data point in the Messi-Ronaldo comparison, though. What a melt-down. 

Tyler1495

June 21st, 2018 at 6:19 PM ^

I picked Croatia to make it to the knockout stage they have the best midfield in the tournament and can control the pace of play really well. I wouldn't be shocked if they made it all the way to atleast the semi finals. Their play has impressed me the most out of any team so far

ken725

June 21st, 2018 at 7:35 PM ^

I wonder what formation/line up changes Sampoli makes for this last game. Will he decide to go back to a 4 man back line after the disaster today?

Whatever that was today was not a good showing from the MF. I would think about starting guys like Banega and Di Maria.