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2010 FIFA World Cup Expert Picks: Group Stage Results

Japan was undoubtedly the biggest positive surprise of the group stage, advancing for the first time on foreign soil. (sattlers.org)

After a couple of weeks of work, the Group stages of the 2010 FIFA World Cup are complete, with less than 24 hours between said completion and the Round of 16. There were plenty of surprises, with Japan making a surprise entry into the second round to face Paraguay, in what should be a fun match to watch. There were significantly more surprises that were negative for the teams involved, most notably last time’s winner (Italy) and runner-up (France) both getting booted out, and finishing at the bottom of their groups at that. Of the six African teams, only Ghana advanced. South Africa beat up a broken France, and Cote d’Ivoire beat up North Korea, so we can’t count those games as success.

Argentina and the Netherlands are on pace to meet in the Finals, having been the only two to score a perfect nine points. Cameroon and North Korea were the only ones to finish without any points. I can’t imagine Kim Jong Il will be happy. If I were a North Korean soccer player, I would just refuse to go back to North Korea, and maybe get a job as a FIFA referee, and work a U.S. game. Those refs can obviously do whatever they want without consequences. Congratulations to the U.S. for winning their group with seven points, on a related note.

Argentina is the favorite to reign, having scored a group-stage-best seven goals, matched by Portugal solely in its outburst against the North Koreans. Algeria and Honduras were the only teams to not score. Portugal’s seven was the best goal differential, while North Korea’s eleven (1-12) was the worst. Kim Jong must be ill after his “team” gave up a group-stage-worst 12 goals; South Korea, Australia, and Denmark were the worst in that category, but still halved North Korea’s total. Portugal and Uruguay were the only ones to not surrender a goal.

As for the SoB staff, Dan jumped into a noticeable lead, thanks to his ability to guess exactly how many goals group winners would score; he did it three times, and five others managed to do it once. France and Italy cost everyone points, but Nigeria was probably the most influential flunk of the first round; half the field could have gained a point on the other half if Nigeria had made it through. But there are still four rounds to go, with plenty of points to gain, so it’s still anyone’s game. To see exactly how everyone is doing so far, check below.

Name Andrew Brian Charlie Dan Erikk Jeff John KC Robert Teddy
Group A Winner France France France France Uruguay Mexico France France Mexico France
2nd Place Mexico Mexico Mexico South Africa France France Mexico Uruguay France Uruguay
Total
Goals
6 6 6 5 7 6 5 6 8 6
Group B Winner Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina Argentina
2nd Place South Korea Greece South Korea Nigeria Nigeria Nigeria Nigeria Greece Nigeria South Korea
Total
Goals
8 8 8 6 9 7 9 8 6 7
Group C Winner England United States England England England England England England United States England
2nd Place United States England United States United States United States United States United States United States England United States
Total
Goals
7 5 5 4 7 5 11 6 6 5
Group D Winner Serbia Germany Ghana Germany Germany Germany Germany Germany Australia Germany
2nd Place Germany Australia Germany Ghana Serbia Serbia Ghana Ghana Germany Ghana
Total
Goals
5 6 6 5 8 6 7 8 6 8
Group E Winner Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands Netherlands
2nd Place Cameroon Cameroon Cameroon Cameroon Denmark Cameroon Cameroon Cameroon Cameroon Denmark
Total
Goals
10 5 4 4 10 8 8 5 10 9
Group F Winner Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy Italy
2nd Place Paraguay Slovakia Paraguay Paraguay Paraguay Slovakia Slovakia Paraguay Slovakia Paraguay
Total
Goals
6 10 6 3 10 5 10 8 6 8
Group G Winner Portugal Portugal Brazil Brazil Brazil Brazil Brazil Portugal Brazil Brazil
2nd Place Brazil Brazil Portugal Portugal Portugal Cote d’Ivoire Portugal Brazil Portugal Portugal
Total
Goals
8 8 8 6 8 7 9 8 11 6
Group H Winner Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain Spain
2nd Place Honduras Switzerland Chile Chile Chile Chile Chile Chile Honduras Chile
Total
Goals
11 9 8 5 10 9 6 8 10 9
Total Points 17 20 21 26 17 18 18 19 17 22

Table Legend

  • Four point picks are bolded.
  • Two point picks are italicized.
  • Zero point picks are crossed out.

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