Tuesday, 16 October 2018

Research Impact: Soccer Mad Boffin Contributes to Soccer Guide




Dr Alex Gillett has contributed to a new book by Adrian Webster (ex-Seattle Sounders FC and Colchester United FC).

Adrian wanted his coaching book to be different. This book shares his views and experiences of having been involved in the game as a player, coach and manager at youth, college and pro levels.

Adrian started to get involved in coaching when he first joined the Seattle Sounders in 1974, quickly discovering the importance of understanding the way that we learn, and that in coaching football is very much like teaching.

Alex contributed by providing advice on content and on the title of the book, to help with clarity of the text, which includes not just technical detail about playing and coaching, but also Adrian's personal reflections on his experiences as a player during the historically significant era of US soccer during the 1970s.  As an author with experience of writing published material on 20th century soccer history, Alex was well equipped to assist Ade in his 'goals' for this book!

A proportion of income from sales of the book will be donated to a childrens' cancer charity.

The book is available to buy now from amazon at a very accessible price:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Guide-Soccer-Coaching-Ades-Way-ebook/dp/B07H3ZF4MB


Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Reflections on the 2018 Soccer Mad Boffins Conference Tour



What a summer! Amazing weather, a fantastic World Cup, and a veritable plethora of Soccer Mad Boffins public talks and academic lectures to fill in the time we weren't watching England progress to the semi-finals.  Here is a recap and reflection as we remember it...





June 1st 'England 1966, USA 1994 and the World Cup: Thoughts on populism, the popular and public indifference' 


Populism and the Leisure Spectacle: A BSA Leisure & Recreation Study Group Workshop 

Venue: University of Bath







This British Sociological Association workshop combined contemporary history with event management, cultural studies and theory with studies of national cases, the binding theme being the whys and wherefores of the populist profile of particular sport and leisure practices and cultural formations.

The event included presentations and panels discussion with experts also including Professor Alan Tomlinson, author/academic/broadcaster David Goldblatt, Michael Willams, and Brian Clift.

Soccer Mad Boffins' Alex Gillett opened the day with a consideration of the 1966 football World Cup finals tournament, hosted and won by England. Drawing upon his work with co-author Kevin Tennant he presented data on the almost serendipitous way in which the British government lent financial support to the event, the disappointment of those English regions beyond London for whom the anticipated tourist bonanza was a washout if not disaster, and the small scale of commercialisation of the product that nevertheless hinted at the later, media-generated and sponsor-based global commodity that the World Cup has become. The broader context was informed by Flyvbjerg’s four sublimes of the mega-project, to which Alex and Kevin’s research has brought an ethnographic and qualitative dimension as applied to the study of event history and business history. These themes and approaches stimulated lively discussion on just how we understand contemporary history and the lived meanings of iconic cultural moments in our past. He also looked at how the 1994 World Cup in the United States sought, through targeted marketing strategies aimed at both established and potential audiences, to popularize the game in the crowded US market dominated by the Big 4 (American Football, basketball, baseball and ice hockey).




June 12th 'The Business of World Cup Football'

co-presented with Greg Dyke (former Chairman of the Football Association)

Venue: York Festival of Ideas, The King's Manor, York








It was our great honour to co-present this event with Greg Dyke, which was attended by a large enthusiastic audience on a warm summer's evening.  We began by presenting from our research of the 1966 and 1994 FIFA World Cups contextualising it with information about more recent and future events, such as Brazil, Russia, Qatar and USA 2026.  Then followed a round table discussion chaired by Greg, who then reflected on his own experiences of being FA Chairman and Director General of the BBC.  The audience posed some excellent questions which we were delighted to answer and everyone enjoyed hearing Greg's views on football and its broader social impact as well as the business side. There were some predictions of England's likely performance in the World Cup which were superseded by Gareth Southgate and his team's performance in Russia!   Two days after the presentation, the 2018 World Cup kicked off. To tie-in with the event our podcast on the story of football was released and we hope to participate in the Festival of Ideas in 2019 - watch this space!  


June 20th 'Project Managing and Marketing the Soccer World Cup: 1966 and 1994'

Aston Organizational History Workshop

Venue: Aston Business School 




A few days after the World Cup kicked off we contributed to this workshop organized by Professor Stephanie Decker, Head of Research at Aston Business School.  This was a great venue because of its links to the 1966 World Cup and the event included several presentations covering a range of organizational history topics from manufacturing to finance.  We must add the catering was excellent - the samosas and cake were particularly enjoyable.  Over the course of one hour we presented findings from our paper accepted for the International Journal of the History of Sport as well as findings from our Project Management Journal paper and book Foundations of Managing Sporting EventsOur research was very well received and we look forward to returning to Aston at the BAM2019 Conference where we will further develop the theme of our Special Interest Group, Management and Business History.



June 22nd Poster Presentation: 'Using Archival Research in University Teaching'

Venue: University of York Teaching and Learning Conference 




We made our first ever poster presentation on home turf at the University of York Teaching and Learning Conference.  Our poster was about archival research in teaching and served as an excellent warm-up for our appearance at the BAM 2018 annual conference.  See below!



July 9th - 13th Critical Acclaim for Soccer Mad Boffins!





With the World Cup well under way we were able to compare our predictions to reality which created some fun on this blog with several articles which went viral and even caught the attention of Soccernomics author Stefan Szymanski who described it as 'a teachable moment'.

This blog was also considered worthy of archiving by the British Library in the  UK Web Archive, which preserves specially selected websites that represent different aspects of UK heritage on the web, as well as important global events.



July 12th - 13th Management History Research Group workshop 


Venue: Riddle's Court, 322 Lawnmarket in Edinburgh





Arriving in Edinburgh we had the pleasure of watching England crash out of the World Cup in the semi-final in a pub full of Scotland supporters! A traditional Scottish deep fried supper helped ease the pain. The MHRG was a major success and the venue was fantastic as this photo depicts.  Our paper developed the poster presentation about using archives and was well received by a prestigious panel of professors.




September 4th-6th 'Management and Business History Track' of the British Academy of Management Annual Conference

Venue: University of the West of England, Bristol




The start of September took us to the historic port town home of Triphop, Banksy and the British aircraft industry. We opened the conference with a dinner in the former Bristol Stock Exchange, now an Indian restaurant. The ornate surroundings complimented the excellent meal. On the first day of activities we delivered a Professional Development Workshop on publishing academic books, drawing on our experience and expertise as editors of the Emerald series Frontiers of Management History. We met many impressive and creative new authors and hope to work with at least some of them soon. On Day 2 we presented a full paper version of our work previously presented at the MHRG and University of York poster session (see above).  By now we had used the constructive feedback to craft a developed paper which we hoped to publish.  Our thanks to the esteemed audience for all their comments and suggestions.  In our roles as Special Interest Group committee members we were also involved in chairing sessions and mentoring early career academics and we thoroughly enjoy contributing to the development of our academic field.  The main conference dinner was held at Aerospace Bristol where we got to walk through Concorde and enjoy the Concorde museum then enjoy a selection of wines and food courses at a table situated underneath the aircraft, whilst listening to Jonathan Dimbleby perform an on-the-couch interview with Micheal Eavis the promoter of Glastonbury Festival.  We were pleased that BAM brought a bit of aeronautic and creative industry business histories to the heart of its conference!


Tuesday, 11 September 2018

Paper published in Journal of Management History


Now that the World Cup is over and summer is coming to an end, we at Soccer Mad Boffins think it a good time to reflect on a few achievements from the past few months.

As usual, we shall publish a summary of all our summer speaking events and conferences soon, but before that we'd like to bring your attention to a paper published recently in the Journal of Management History, in which we look at the institutional logic of professional soccer clubs and how attempts to work with local government were frustrated by the particular character of professional sport, using the near-bankruptcy of Middlesbrough football club in the 1980s as a case study.






In the paper we propose two concepts: 'Shadow Hybridity' and 'Institutional Logic of Professional Sport' which extend existing theories about organizational hybridity and also institutional logic.  

The paper should be of interest to anyone studying these areas, as well as sports and public management more generally.

The paper can be found by clicking on this link although you or your institution will need a subscription to the journal in order to read it.


Here is the full abstract and citation details:




Citation:
Alex G. Gillett, Kevin D. Tennent, (2018) "Shadow hybridity and the institutional logic of professional sport: Perpetuating a sporting business in times of rapid social and economic change", Journal of Management History, Vol. 24 Issue: 2, pp.228-259, https://doi.org/10.1108/JMH-11-2017-0060

Monday, 23 July 2018

First Explorations into Business History: Forfar Athletic Year Book 1961-62


In the first of an occasional series of articles about Forfar Athletic, Kevin looks at one of his earliest publications...

The 2018 FIFA World Cup has ended and the Scottish League Cup Group Stages are the main game in town! The Scottish League 1 Club Forfar Athletic hit the headlines on Sunday after winning 4-5 on penalties against East Fife, in the group stages of the Scottish League Cup.  This gained attention south of the border as it fulfilled a famous tongue twister allegedly invented by Eric Morecambe to tease his friend James Alexander Gordon, who read out the football results on BBC Radio for many years.  The joys of Scottish lower league football are little known south of the border; most English fans have probably only heard of clubs such as Forfar, or their Angus rivals Brechin City, Arbroath and Montrose via the football results. Indeed, Jonathan Meades called a 2009 documentary on small-town Scotland The Football Pools Towns in reference to this phenomena.

But these clubs and indeed these lovely little towns do have an existence outside of the teleprinter and the classified football results.  I discovered this as a history undergraduate at the University of Dundee, when a friend with a car decided we should start going to some lower league matches. We went to Station Park, home of Forfar for a Tuesday night fixture against Queens Park which the Loons won 3-0, and I and another of my fellow students kept going back.  And back.

This new addiction led to me contributing a few times to a fanzine, The Loonatic, and here is one of my first attempts at business history - a review of the club's 1961-62 yearbook, published in the summer of 1961:
Click images to enlarge


Perhaps it is time for some more business history on the topic of the Loons, or at least Scottish football as a whole?

For all their summer optimism, the Loons' hopes that Mr Christie might help their young team get promoted came to nothing, as they finished the second division in 16th, the 'Bully Wee' winning the championship and 'Doonhammers' being runners-up. But at least Brechin were bottom and Angus bragging rights maintained!


Monday, 16 July 2018

Soccer Mad Boffins Analysis Described by Stefan Szymanski as "A Teachable Moment"

Praise indeed from Stefan Szymanski, co-author of Soccernomics, in response to our recent blog posts about predicting results and outcomes of the 2018 FIFA World Cup:





Writing on the social network media Twitter, Szymsnski refers to our 'experiment' as 'very nice - teachable moment'.

Thank you Stefan 😀

The blog posts are a bit of fun more than scientifically rigorous research, but we hope that our loyal readers agree that they do raise some interesting points that could be used when teaching about research methods, statistical predictions, and the soccer world cup.


Monday, 2 July 2018

World Cup Predictions: Human Brain, Advanced Statistical Modeling, or Completely Random?


Comparing 'common sense', random, and statistically modeled predictions of the World Cup Finals Group Stages


We received interest in our previous blog post in which we compared our predictions for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Finals Group Stage with those of random dice throws.  In particular, readers seemed interested in our concluding remarks in which we drew comparison to the more high-tech attempts of some European academics (Groll et al., 2018) who research gained media attention, and of Goldman Sachs, the multinational investment bank and financial services company, whose predictions were also widely reported by the Press.

In our previous post we identified that an initial reading of their results and ours suggested that despite the investments of time and technology that these organizations had poured into their highly sophisticated statistically-calculated predictions, neither predicted the failure of the German team, and neither seemed much better at identifying the teams which progressed to the next phase of the tournament.

Given the interest in these claims we thought it worth digging a bit deeper to provide another layer of analysis to test the proposition that our soccer knowledge yielded results superior to those of Groll et al. and Goldman Sachs’ economists and statistical modeling.


Comparison of Methods

First, let’s compare our approaches.

Goldman Sachs, on page 1 of its report ‘2018 – The World Cup and Economics’ describes that “The core of the publication is the forecasting model” and that they  “augment the typical team level data with player level characteristics” having expended “hours of number crunching” involving “200,000 probability trees, and 1 million simulations”. Their conclusion? “England meets Germany in the quarters, where Germany wins; and Germany meets Brazil in the final, and Brazil prevails.”
Meanwhile, the European academics (Groll et al, 2018) provide the following, more technical, information in the abstract to its paper, the somewhat drily titled ‘Prediction of the FIFA World Cup 2018 – A random forest approach with an emphasis on estimated team ability parameters’:

In this work, we compare three different modeling approaches for the scores of soccer matches with regard to their predictive performances based on all matches from the four previous FIFA World Cups 2002 - 2014: Poisson regression models, random forests and ranking methods. While the former two are based on the teams' covariate information, the latter method estimates adequate ability parameters that reflect the current strength of the teams best.”

But the conclusions are remarkably similar:
the FIFA World Cup 2018 is simulated repeatedly and winning probabilities are obtained for all teams. The model slightly favors Spain before the defending champion Germany.”

Contrastingly, our 'practical common sense' approach was to augment our soccer knowledge  with a quick glance through the FIFA rankings, this year’s Panini sticker album, and a pull-out from When Saturday Comes Magazine.  We then filled out an excel spreadsheet of the tournament’s fixtures which we downloaded from Excely.com (click here to access it for yourself)
Finally, the random dice approach was just that.  Two dice rolled to predict the scores for each team.
So, how do the results from these different approaches compare and which method proved most effective?

Findings


Unlike our own fully transparent and honest approach, neither the Groll et al. (2018) paper nor the Goldman Sachs reports include a breakdown of what they think the results of each game are likely to be – instead they hide behind statistical probabilities, no doubt intended to blind the reader with science and fudge the issue so nobody can point out where they got things wrong.

But, both reports do include predicted final group tables and so it is these with which we can provide a comparison to our own predictions.

For the purpose of simplicity and fairness we decide to run a couple of different scenarios, one very basic (Analysis X), the other a bit more nuanced (Analysis Y).



Analysis X: Teams to Qualify for the Knockout Stage


In Analysis X, the most basic test, we examined how accurately each ‘participant’ predicted which teams would progress to the next ‘knockout stage’ of the World Cup Finals by finishing in one of the top two positions in their group.   In this scenario we were not interested in whether or not the actual position (1st or 2nd) was correct, just how many of the teams actually did get out of the Group stage.  We awarded 1 point for each team correctly predicted to qualify for the next round (2 qualifiers x 8 groups = a maximum of 16 points).




Alex
Kevin
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al.
Group A
2
2
0
1
2
Group B
2
2
1
2
2
Group C
2
2
1
2
2
Group D
2
1
1
2
2
Group E
2
1
1
2
2
Group F
1
1
1
1
1
Group G
2
2
1
2
2
Group H
1
1
1
1
1
Total Points
14
12
7
13
14
Success Rate
88%
75%
44%
81%
88%


As the results show, in Analysis X there was not much difference between the Soccer Mad Boffins approach and that of Goldman Sachs or Groll et al., whose sophisticated application of statistics was fairly effective did when compared with our non-statistically modeled predictions did not seem to fully justify the additional effort and investment. Whilst Groll et al. did have the highest success rate (88%) this was equalled by Soccer Mad Boffins' Dr Alex G. Gillett.  Meanwhile Goldman Sachs were 1 point behind and came third, whilst Dr Kevin D. Tennent was fourth, but only 2 correct predictions behind Gillett and Groll et al., with 12 points (75% accuracy).  

The random factor of the dice was the least successful predictor, being just 44% accurate (7 correct predictions) although this is higher than we thought it might have been.



Analysis Y: Group Table Finishing Position Predictions




In Analysis Y we went a few steps further and explored how accurately each ‘participant’ predicted the correct final position in the Group Tables of every team in the tournament. We awarded 1 point for each team positioned correctly (4 teams per group x 8 groups = 32 teams/a maximum of 32 points).



              
Alex
Kevin
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al.
Group A
2
2
0
2
4
Group B
2
0
1
2
2
Group C
2
2
0
4
2
Group D
0
1
1
0
0
Group E
2
2
2
4
2
Group F
1
0
2
1
0
Group G
4
4
1
4
2
Group H
2
0
1
1
2

Total Points
15
11
8
18
14

Success Rate
47%
34%
25%
56%
44%



In the more complex scenario investigated in Analysis Y, none of the 'participants' were more than about half successful, reflecting the difficulty in predicting soccer.  Whilst Goldman Sachs' method did prove most successful (56% accuracy, with 18 points) this was only 3 more correct predictions than Soccer Mad Boffins' Dr Alex G. Gillett who correctly predicted 15 teams' final Group Stage positions (47% accuracy) to beat Groll et al. by a single point (14 correct predictions = 44% accuracy).


Again, the dice were the least effective predictor, with a 25% accuracy of prediction, getting just 8 predictions correct, although this '1-in-4' success rate is still quite good and possibly better than some TV pundits!



Conclusion and Discussion



This article, much like the reports from Goldman Sachs and Groll et al. are as much for fun as anything else.


So what did we find out? Well, that is a good question. With reference to the provocative question we raise in the title of this article 'Human Brain or Advanced Statistical Modeling?'

Clearly there is a case for the application of sophisticated statistics and global economics type research techniques when trying to predict the World Cup, but is it worth the the time and effort?

We have shown that when simply predicting which teams will progress out of the Group Stages (a sort of 'each way bet') we were as effective as the researchers 'scientifically' employing economic theory and advanced statistical methods to large data sets. Remember, our own methods involved using our working knowledge of the sport and browsing FIFA rankings and a couple of other things all easily accessible simply by walking to your newsagent. The caveat is of course that we research and write about football as part of our jobs, but many people follow and consume the game just as closely.

When applied to the more nuanced scenario of exact finishing positions within each group, the Goldman Sachs analysis did yield more accurate predictions, but the analysis of Groll et al. was slightly less accurate than Soccer Mad Boffins' Dr Alex G. Gillett.

And let's not forget our previous blog post in which we showed that our predictions, like those of Goldman Sachs and Groll et al. failed to predict some of the 'shock' results - for example all but the 'random dice' predictions identified Germany as the eventual World Cup winners! In contrast, the dice predict a Mexico - Switzerland final with Switzerland ultimately lifting the Cup. So far more realistic than any of the informed predictions.

And there lies an important point. With the exception of the dice, the predictions of which teams would qualify from the group stages were quite impressive, ranging in accuracy from 75% to 88%. However, for the more sophisticated task of predicting actual finishing positions (which required a more accurate prediction of goals scored and conceded, and game outcomes) neither Soccer Mad Boffins, Goldman Sachs, nor Groll et al. did particularly well - accuracy ranged between 34% - 56%.

Statistical modeling can be very useful in certain contexts, but some things are still very difficult to predict in that way. Science shouldn't put too much faith in the sums alone. Perhaps one lesson that our 'experiment' highlights is that the rationale behind doing things 'more scientifically' with statistical models is often to reduce the number of variables in a situation and to remove human irrationality from decision-making. But in some contexts perhaps a more complex array of variables and the acceptance of irrationality is necessary.

Perhaps this is because statistical models tend to assume rational behavior on the part of actors and ignore the role of agency. To critique the methodology of the Goldman Sachs and Groll et al. papers, their approaches perhaps assume too much that managers have perfect information about the abilities of their players and will act rationally to maximize utility - that is, they will know their best teams and tactics and always put them on the field. It also assumes that players can themselves maximize their own ability and always play to the best of their ability. 


These assumptions are problematic when it comes to modeling football, which is a complex social system which relies on the interaction of two teams of 11 players plus coaches and officials! Managers may also use tactics which appear superficially sub-optimal, such as Gareth Southgate's controversial decision to rest Harry Kane, but which are intended to allow for long-term outcomes - thus managers may not play their best team in every match. This forecasting football has similar dangers to forecasting other social systems where a high degree of agency is in play. Prediction techniques may be better suited to analyzing individual sports such as tennis or chess rather than team sports. (we encourage readers to see also the work of Kuper & Syzmanski who raise similar points about the unpredictability of soccer).

So, why do these analysis, and who takes them seriously?


Well as we already said it is a bit of fun, it presents an opportunity to test knowledge and methods, and of course it is a fairly effective way to achieve a bit of publicity - as we have reported we found the Goldman Sachs and Groll et al. documents via online news reports. 

Perhaps the best advice then is the small-print at the bottom of the front cover of the Goldman Sachs report 'Investors should consider this report as only a single factor in making their investment decision'!

References


Gillett, A.G. and Tennent, K.D. (2018) 'World Cup Finals Group Stages are over...how were your predictions?', blogpost availiable online: <http://http://soccermadboffins.blogspot.com/2018/06/world-cup-finals-group-stages-are.html> [accessed 1st July 2018]


Goldman Sachs (2018) '2018: The World Cup and Economics', research report prepared by the Goldman Sachs Global Macro Research Department, available online: <http://www.goldmansachs.com/our-thinking/pages/world-cup-2018/multimedia/report.pdf> [accessed 1st July 2018]


Groll, A., Ley, C., Schauberger, G., and van Eetvelde, H. (2018) 'Prediction of the FIFA World Cup 2018 – A random forest approach with an emphasis on estimated team ability parameters', arXiv.org Open Access, available online <https://arxiv.org/pdf/1806.03208.pdf> [accessed 1st July 2018]

Kuper, S., & Szymanski, S. (2012). Soccernomics: Why England Loses, Why Spain, Germany, and Brazil Win, and Why the US, Japan, Australia, Turkey and Even Iraq Are Destined to Become the Kings of the World’s Most Popular Sport. Nation Book: New York.



APPENDIX: DATA ANALYSIS


Game X: 1 point for each team correctly predicted to qualify 



GROUP A


Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Uruguay
Uruguay
Uruguay
Saudi Arabia
Uruguay
Uruguay
Russia
Russia
Russia
Egypt
Saudi Arabia
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Egypt
Egypt
Uruguay
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Egypt
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
Russia
Egypt
Egypt

POINTS
2
2
0
1
2



GROUP B


Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Spain
Portugal
Portugal
Morocco
Portugal
Spain
Portugal
Spain
Spain
Portugal
Spain
Portugal
Iran
Iran
Morocco
Spain
Iran
Morocco
Morocco
Morocco
Iran
Iran
Morocco
Iran

POINTS
2
2
1
2
2



GROUP C


Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
France
France
France
Denmark
France
France
Denmark
Denmark
Denmark
Australia
Denmark
Denmark
Peru
Australia
Australia
France
Peru
Australia
Australia
Peru
Peru
Peru
Australia
Peru

POINTS
2
2
1
2
2









GROUP D


Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Croatia
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Croatia
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Croatia
Nigeria
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Iceland
Iceland
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Iceland
Nigeria
Nigeria
POINTS
2
1
1
2
2



GROUP E

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Brazil
Brazil
Brazil
Costa Rica
Brazil
Brazil
Switzerland
Switzerland
Serbia
Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland
Serbia
Costa Rica
Switzerland
Serbia
Serbia
Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Serbia
Costa Rica
Brazil
Costa Rica
Serbia

POINTS
2
1
1
2
2



GROUP F

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Sweden
Germany
Germany
Germany
Germany
Germany
Mexico
Mexico
Sweden
Mexico
Mexico
Sweden
South Korea
Sweden
Mexico
South Korea
Sweden
Mexico
Germany
South Korea
South Korea
Sweden
South Korea
South Korea

POINTS
1
1
1
1
1



GROUP G
  
Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Belgium
Belgium
Belgium
Tunisia
Belgium
Belgium
England
England
England
England
England
England
Tunisia
Tunisia
Tunisia
Belgium
Tunisia
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Tunisia

POINTS
2
2
1
2
2



GROUP H

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Colombia
Colombia
Senegal
Poland
Colombia
Colombia
Japan
Poland
Colombia
Japan
Poland
Poland
Senegal
Senegal
Poland
Colombia
Japan
Senegal
Poland
Japan
Japan
Senegal
Senegal
Japan
POINTS
1
1
1
1
1











Game Y: 1 point for each correctly predicted position in final table


GROUP A

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Uruguay
Uruguay
Uruguay
Saudi Arabia
Uruguay
Uruguay
Russia
Russia
Russia
Egypt
Saudi Arabia
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Egypt
Egypt
Uruguay
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Egypt
Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
Russia
Egypt
Egypt

POINTS
2
2
0
2
4



GROUP B

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Spain
Portugal
Portugal
Morocco
Portugal
Spain
Portugal
Spain
Spain
Portugal
Spain
Portugal
Iran
Iran
Morocco
Spain
Iran
Morocco
Morocco
Morocco
Iran
Iran
Morocco
Iran

POINTS
2
0
1
2
2



GROUP C

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
France
France
France
Denmark
France
France
Denmark
Denmark
Denmark
Australia
Denmark
Denmark
Peru
Australia
Australia
France
Peru
Australia
Australia
Peru
Peru
Peru
Australia
Peru

POINTS
2
2
0
4
2



GROUP D

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Croatia
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Argentina
Croatia
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Croatia
Nigeria
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Iceland
Iceland
Iceland
Nigeria
Croatia
Iceland
Nigeria
Nigeria

POINTS
0
1
1
0
0



GROUP E

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Brazil
Brazil
Brazil
Costa Rica
Brazil
Brazil
Switzerland
Switzerland
Serbia
Switzerland
Switzerland
Switzerland
Serbia
Costa Rica
Switzerland
Serbia
Serbia
Costa Rica
Costa Rica
Serbia
Costa Rica
Brazil
Costa Rica
Serbia

POINTS
2
2
2
4
2



GROUP F

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Sweden
Germany
Germany
Germany
Germany
Germany
Mexico
Mexico
Sweden
Mexico
Mexico
Sweden
South Korea
Sweden
Mexico
South Korea
Sweden
Mexico
Germany
South Korea
South Korea
Sweden
South Korea
South Korea

POINTS
1
0
2
1
0


GROUP G
  
Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Belgium
Belgium
Belgium
Tunisia
Belgium
Belgium
England
England
England
England
England
England
Tunisia
Tunisia
Tunisia
Belgium
Tunisia
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Panama
Tunisia

POINTS
4
4
1
4
2



GROUP H

Actual Final Table
AG
KT
Dice
Goldman Sachs
Groll et al
Colombia
Colombia
Senegal
Poland
Colombia
Colombia
Japan
Poland
Colombia
Japan
Poland
Poland
Senegal
Senegal
Poland
Colombia
Japan
Senegal
Poland
Japan
Japan
Senegal
Senegal
Japan
POINTS
2
0
1
1
2