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FIFA World Cup 2018

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25 minutes ago, DavidM said:

You see teams like Saudi and I’m sure more to come and you do wonder what a 48 team tournament will be like . Likes of Scotland might even get in 

You could expand it to include all FIFA affiliated nations except one and we'd still fail on goal difference (and probably losing to Gibraltar in the deciding game).

Still, there are advantages to getting your disappointment in early.

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As I retired recently I am going really enjoy this, although I am getting some barbed comments from my better half: I should be painting the fence/shed/house, doing the gardening/dishwasher, maintaining the garage/kitchen.

 

And as Scotland can't be there I will of course be supporting our next door neighbour. ?

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12 minutes ago, Methven Hornet said:

As I retired recently I am going really enjoy this, although I am getting some barbed comments from my better half: I should be painting the fence/shed/house, doing the gardening/dishwasher, maintaining the garage/kitchen.

 

And as Scotland can't be there I will of course be supporting our next door neighbour. ?

Sweden or Denmark ?

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2 hours ago, Maximus Decimus said:

It's worth bearing mind Australia moved to that group to make qualification easier.

They used to be in the Pacific group, where they regularly put hatfuls of goals past the likes of Tonga and Samoa. They beat American Samoa 31:0, back in 2001.

Switching groups, at their request, actually gave them more of a challenge, and better preparation.

 

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Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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You wonder what teams like Italy Holland and Chile think when they see how some teams qualify . Whichever zone they’re in Australia have a comfy path and play off then look awful when they play anyone

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51 minutes ago, Futtocks said:

They used to be in the Pacific group, where they regularly put hatfuls of goals past the likes of Tonga and Samoa. They beat American Samoa 31:0, back in 2001.

Switching groups, at their request, actually gave them more of a challenge, and better preparation.

 

This is of course true but moving to Asia also makes it easier to qualify partly because as you say they are better prepared. This is no better demonstrated by the fact that they've been a regular feature since they moved.

IIRC they used to have to play a playoff game against a South American or Asian team to qualify and they usually lost (1994, 1998, 2002). Bizarrely in 1990 Israel were in their group and topped the group before losing the playoff match.

You could of course argue that their move to Asia has coincided with an improved team and this is true. However, moving to Asia means they aren't always in an all or nothing tie often against teams like Uruguay or Argentina.

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56 minutes ago, DavidM said:

You wonder what teams like Italy Holland and Chile think when they see how some teams qualify . Whichever zone they’re in Australia have a comfy path and play off then look awful when they play anyone

This will only get worse. They're going to move to 48 teams but it will only be marginally easier for European teams to qualify.

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2 hours ago, DavidM said:

You see teams like Saudi and I’m sure more to come and you do wonder what a 48 team tournament will be like . Likes of Scotland might even get in 

Lets no get carried away

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4 hours ago, Maximus Decimus said:

It's a common misconception amongst the general public that it is the best 32 countries when it is often far from it. It should of course have representation from around the globe. Last night did make the decision to go to 48 games even more ridiculous than it was though, will the World Cup be better with another 16 lesser ranked countries? Much depended on how they split it, if the extra 16 countries had another 10 from Europe and South America it wouldn't be so bad. However, they've given an extra 4.5 to to these continents, meaning 11.5 places go to areas with teams worse than Panama or Saudi Arabia.

11.5 places? Does that mean one country only gets to send half a team?

(Baffled by football).


.

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1 hour ago, Futtocks said:

They used to be in the Pacific group, where they regularly put hatfuls of goals past the likes of Tonga and Samoa. They beat American Samoa 31:0, back in 2001.

Switching groups, at their request, actually gave them more of a challenge, and better preparation.

 

LOL. Nothing to do with that. It's considerably easier for them to qualify through Asia, which was the only reason for the switch. V.poor form they were allowed to move. It's supposed to be geographical.

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7 minutes ago, John Drake said:

11.5 places? Does that mean one country only gets to send half a team?

(Baffled by football).

You obviously didn't see Saudi Arabia in action; there's half a team that's already in the World Cup.


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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18 minutes ago, John Drake said:

11.5 places? Does that mean one country only gets to send half a team?

(Baffled by football).

The 0.5 is a playoff. 

For instance they don't award Oceania a single guaranteed slot. The winner of their group plays in a playoff against the 5th placed South American team. 

 

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4 minutes ago, Maximus Decimus said:

The 0.5 is a playoff. 

For instance they don't award Oceania a single guaranteed slot. The winner of their group plays in a playoff against the 5th placed South American team. 

 

Aaaaah, I see.


.

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Well that second half was hard work...


With the best, thats a good bit of PR, though I would say the Bedford team, theres, like, you know, 13 blokes who can get together at the weekend to have a game together, which doesnt point to expansion of the game. Point, yeah go on!

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A magnificent diving header OG to seal the result! Magic of the cup... or something.


Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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6 hours ago, Maximus Decimus said:

It's worth bearing mind Australia moved to that group to make qualification easier. They seem to play a crazy number of games though. 

Judging by Qatar's qualification campaign we probably shouldn't bother having a host nation in 2022.

Yes I had forgotten about Australia. They made hard work of qualifying. But as you say it is easier and they have had more success than when they used to play off against a South American team.

At least I didn't look foolish with my comments about Iran - they have an excellent defensive minded manager.

 

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Just now, GeordieSaint said:

I expect this to be a dive-fest!

You were saying...? Chris Ronald does his Greg Louganis tribute within seconds of kick-off.

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Millions long for immortality who don't know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon. (Susan Ertz)

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Diving before he hit the leg.  Stupid to 'dangle' a leg out in the penalty box, but not for me.


With the best, thats a good bit of PR, though I would say the Bedford team, theres, like, you know, 13 blokes who can get together at the weekend to have a game together, which doesnt point to expansion of the game. Point, yeah go on!

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Nice to see the cheat is still at it . No contact and threw his leg against the defender then a swan dive 

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