World Cup Day 17 12/6: Iberian Peninsula Represent!

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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Jan 10, 2004
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The 718
Coming in late in this one is almost more humiliating than staying on the bench throughout.
 

Zososoxfan

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Coming in late in this one is almost more humiliating than staying on the bench throughout.
I agree, but it's also a face saving gesture. A highly botoxed, and artificially-tightened face, but a face nonetheless. Probably makes it easier to keep him off the field against Morocco.
 

Zososoxfan

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FIFA World Rankings of the QFinalists:

1. Brazil
3. Argentina
4. France
5. England
8. Netherlands
9. Portugal
12. Croatia
22. Morocco

Pretty darn chalky. Belgium, Italy, Germany, and Denmark are the big names missing entirely from KOs (in Italy's case from the tourney entirely), and many of the other teams ranked in the top 25 were just eliminated in R16: Spain, USA, Senegal, Switerzland, and Japan.

The bracket thus sets up as:

3 v. 8 plays 1 v. 12
4 v. 5 plays 9 v. 22

Should make for an OUTSTANDING Friday and Saturday.
 

Zososoxfan

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Based on squad values on TM, here are the rankings:

1. England (inflated by EPL for sure, but still)
2. Brazil
3. France
4. Portugal
[5. Germany]
[6. Spain]
7. Argentina
8. Holland
[9. Italy]
[10. Belgium]
[11. Uruguay]
12. Croatia
23. Morocco
 

BaseballJones

ivanvamp
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Oct 1, 2015
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Honestly, these matchups in the quarters are awesome. I'd rank them:

1. England vs. France - Defending champs vs a big rival. Napoleon vs. Wellington. Howe vs. Lafayette. The works.

2. Netherlands vs. Argentina - Messi front and center against a traditional power in the Dutch. Europe vs. South America.

3. Morocco vs. Portugal. The Ronaldo situation is spicy. Morocco is the lovable underdog who showed real grit today.

4. Croatia vs. Brazil. Powerhouse vs. a tough customer in Croatia. Hard to rank this 4th but the other three are just so good.

France, Argentina, Portugal, Brazil all advance, setting up an absolutely explosive final four.
 

SocrManiac

Tommy Seebach’s mustache
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Apr 15, 2006
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Could you have scripted a more perfect microcosm of where CR7 is today?
  • Dives for a penalty in the first match, everybody in the world eviscerates the ref for giving it
  • Tries to steal a goal from a teammate
  • Throws a tantrum when subbed off
  • Benched in R16, replacement scores a hat trick
  • Largest contribution during the match is smashing a free kick into the wall when there were better options on the pitch
All that’s missing is an interview where he cuts off his manager at the knees, right?
 

OCST

Sunny von Bulow
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Jan 10, 2004
22,955
The 718
Could you have scripted a more perfect microcosm of where CR7 is today?
  • Dives for a penalty in the first match, everybody in the world eviscerates the ref for giving it
  • Tries to steal a goal from a teammate
  • Throws a tantrum when subbed off
  • Benched in R16, replacement scores a hat trick
  • Largest contribution during the match is smashing a free kick into the wall when there were better options on the pitch
All that’s missing is an interview where he cuts off his manager at the knees, right?
No, he could also assault a boy in the stands.

https://www.si.com/fannation/soccer/futbol/news/cristiano-ronaldo-charged-over-fan-phone-incident-at-everton.
 

Zososoxfan

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Because I love TM, most valuable players remaining:

1. Mbappe - France
2. Vini - Brazil
3. Foden - England
6. Bellingham - England
8. Kane - England
9. Saka - England
11. Leao - Portugal
13. Bernardo - Portugal
15. Rice - England
18. Tchoua - France
19. Rodrygo - Brazil
20. Mount - England
21. Gabi Jesus - Brazil
22. Dias - Portugal
23. Neymar - Brazil
24. Lautaro - Argentina
25. Antony - Brazil
26. Bruno - Portugal
28. Grealish - England
29. Sterling - England
30. Cancelo - Portugal
31. Marquinhos - Brazil
34. TAA - England
36. De Ligt - Netherlands
39. Hakimi - Morocco
41. Nuno - Portugal
42. Gvardiol - Croatia
44. Dembele - France
45. Kounde - France
46. Guimaraes - Brazil
47. Militao - Brazil
49. Coman - France

England have 9 of the top 50, Brazil have 8, Portugal have 6, France have 5, and Argentina, Croatia, and the Netherlands each have 1. English players' value are inflated due to their extra value to EPL clubs as domestic players, but the other thing that stands out to me are the MFs and defenders on this list:

England (3-4) - Bellingham, Rice, Mount*, TAA
Portugal (3-5) - Bernardo*, Dias, Bruno*, Cancelo, Nuno
France (2) - Tchoua, Kounde
Brazil (3) - Marquinhos, Guimaraes, Militao
Netherlands (1) - De Ligt
Croatia (1) - Gvardiol
Argentina / Morocco (0). However, Romero is 52 and Lisandro is 58. Morocco doesn't appear until Mazraoui and Aguerd are both tied for 158 with lots of other players.

*arguable how much of a mid vs. forward the player is

As Morocco showed today, the team dynamic matters a lot, and I don't think it's just a question of who has the best squad. I've noted before that for all of Brazil's impressive forwards and even their MF, I think their D is suspect outside of Marquinhos. OTOH, I thought Morocco defended better today than Argentina has throughout the tourney. The value of players also doesn't tell us much about performance today, but rather their value in the market. Modric is listed at 10M which is relatively low, even though I think he starts for any team in the world pretty much--club or country. And probably most importantly, saying Mbappe 1st, Vini 2nd, Foden 3rd, doesn't quite summarize how utterly dominant and unstoppable Mbappe is.
 

Zososoxfan

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More statistical fun from fbref and elsewhere!

Goals Scored:
England, Portugal - 12
France - 9
Holland, Brazil - 8, 8
Argentina - 7
Croatia - 5
Morocco - 4

Goals Against:
Morocco - 1
England - 2
Holland - 2
Brazil - 2
Croatia - 2
Argentina - 3
France - 4
Portugal - 5

Most players used in WC so far:
Brazil - 26
France, Portugal - 24
Argentina, Morocco - 21
England - 20
Netherlands - 19
Croatia - 18

Possession:
Argentina - 65%
England - 64.3%

Portugal - 60.7%
Brazil - 57.8%
France - 57.8%
Croatia - 55%
Holland - 53.3%
Morocco - 33.8% (!)


Touches in attacking 1/3:
Argentina - 792
France - 783
Brazil - 781

Croatia - 686
England - 613
Portugal - 552
Holland - 552
Morocco - 325


Touches in opposing penalty area:
Brazil - 124 (Germany was first somehow!)
France - 118
Croatia - 107

Argentina - 96
England - 92
Portugal - 63
Holland - 60
Morocco - 40


Most attempted dribbles:
Brazil - 82
France - 81

England - 66
Argentina - 65
Morocco (!) - 64
Croatia - 49
Holland - 43
Portugal - 38


% of successful dribbles:
England - 48.5%
France - 45.7%
Portugal - 42.1%
Morocco - 40.6%

Holland - 39.5%
Argentina - 38.5%
Croatia - 32.7%
Brazil - 30.5%

Progressive Passes Received:
Brazil - 149
England - 146
Croatia - 136
France - 127
Argentina - 118
Holland - 108
Portugal - 89
Morocco - 52

To get it out of the way, Morocco is a big outlier here but I'm very happy they are. They're a nice strategic variety to add into the mix.

Some of that stands way out! For starters, Argentina is by far the most possession-oriented team left. They're still 11% points behind Spain, and as the data above shows England is right there with them, and England and Portugal aren't far behind. Morocco is the only team that doesn't dominate the ball, but Holland had lower numbers than I expected. I put the Dutch in bold but not the Croats because of their QF matchups. We can probably expect Argentina to dominate the ball against the Dutch, but watching the Brazil-Croatia game get fought in the middle third will be a lot of fun. Casemiro going up against old friend Modric, with Guimaraes and Kovacic also playing starring roles.

That last stat seems to be an attempt at measuring potential key passes, and is defined as "Completed passes that move the ball towards the opponent's goal at least 10 yards from its furthest point in the last six passes, or any completed pass into the penalty area. Excludes passes from the defending 40% of the pitch". Croatia is higher than I expected.

Argentina are the most probing of the bunch by far, as they lead in touches in the final third, but are only 4th in touches in the penalty area. OTOH, Brazil and Croatia stand out as more direct. Portugal, Holland, and Morocco have been clinical so far, scoring at a good clip with fewer touches in the box than the others.

Brazil and France are by far the dribbliest teams left, while Croatia, Holland, and Portugal get it done with more passing. Looking at attempts with success rate, Brazil should probably consider passing more surprisingly. France is just insane--taking lots of defenders on and winning at a high clip. England is surprisingly good with their dribbles and probably should try more. Portugal and Morocco also stand out for having high success rates, with Portugal taking on defenders least often! That's fairly telling.
 

Vinho Tinto

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Lost in the madness of Ronaldo's benching and the scoreline was no Cancelo. Haven't seen anything about him. Watched Santos's post match interview and Cancelo was not brought up by the press.
 

InstaFace

The Ultimate One
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The matchup that made me fall in love with the sport.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DemI2OO7FsU
my WORD was that a melodramatic flop-and-roll... and roll, and roll... by Diego Simeone.

I mean, the ref had already gotten the card out by his second revolution on the ground, but I guess he needed the 3rd and 4th ones just to show how much ab work he had done.

The jokes about Atleti kinda write themselves, there.
 

Dummy Hoy

Angry Pissbum
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Jul 22, 2006
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Lost in the madness of Ronaldo's benching and the scoreline was no Cancelo. Haven't seen anything about him. Watched Santos's post match interview and Cancelo was not brought up by the press.
its pretty interesting too…seems like one of those things where Dalot just fits what Santos wants to do better.
 

Zososoxfan

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The matchup that made me fall in love with the sport.

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DemI2OO7FsU
I was naive enough to think that was a link to 2014 semis, or 1978 finals. Joke's on me.

Lost in the madness of Ronaldo's benching and the scoreline was no Cancelo. Haven't seen anything about him. Watched Santos's post match interview and Cancelo was not brought up by the press.
its pretty interesting too…seems like one of those things where Dalot just fits what Santos wants to do better.
I agree it's a huge story. He's got to figure into Portugal's ending in this tourney one way or another--he's just too talented to leave on the bench if Portugal fall behind or need to chase a bit. Although I guess the same could be said for a player like Dybala.