World Cup Data Analysis: Part III – Evaluation of Performance by and within Confederations

By @k2thedubs

To download the PDF document in full, click here – World Cup White Paper.

 

Exhibit M: UEFA Advancement Place from 1990 – 2014

Image 16

Advancement Stats

  • UEFA has 5 Champions, 4 Runner-Ups, 7 Third Place, and 4 Fourth Place finishes.
    • Champions
      • Germany (1990)
      • France (1998)
      • Italy (2006)
      • Spain (2010)
      • Germany (2014)
    • Runner-Ups
      • Italy (1994)
      • Germany (2002)
      • France (2006)
      • Netherlands (2010)
    • Third Place
      • Italy (1990)
      • Sweden (1994)
      • Croatia (1998)
      • Turkey (2002)
      • Germany (2006)
      • Germany (2010)
      • Netherlands (2014)
    • Fourth Place
      • England (1990)
      • Bulgaria (1994)
      • Netherlands (1998)
      • Portugal (2006)

Home Field Advantage

  • UEFA had its best performances in its home World Cups – in 1990, 1998, and 2006. UEFA has won and had at least 3 Semi-Finalists in every World Cup hosted in Europe. Additionally, UEFA has had 6 Quarter-Finalists in each of these World Cups in Europe. While UEFA has won the most recent two World Cups, neither of which were played in Europe, its Quarter-Finalists tallies (3 in 2010 and 4 in 2014) were significantly lower than that of their home World Cups.

Will history repeat itself in Russia this summer? Should we expect UEFA to win and dominate the knockout rounds?

Exhibit N: UEFA Breakdown by Country from 1990 – 2014

Image 17

  • UEFA has been the best-performing continent. They have won 193 games and lost 131 games and have outscored opponents by 138 goals.
  • 18 different countries have more than 10 Points.
  • 12 different countries have less than 10 Points.
  • Other than six countries – Serbia (0.5), Scotland (0.7), Slovenia (0.7), Austria (0.8), Greece (0.8), and Russia (0.9) – every country averages more than 1.0 Points per game.
  • 30 countries from UEFA have participated in at least one of the past seven World Cups. Iceland will increase the total to 31 with their qualification for the 2018 World Cup.
  • Except for Greece (-15), no country has a double digit negative Goal Differential and half (15) have a positive Goal Differential.
  • 24 countries have a Goal Differential between -9 and +8.
  • 5 countries – Germany (58), Netherlands (25), Italy (24), Spain (23), and France (20) – account for a +150 Goal Differential.
  • 7 countries – Belgium (6), England (7), France (6), Germany (8), Italy (7), Netherlands (6), and Spain (8) – have qualified for six or more of the past eight World Cups.
  • 9 countries – Belgium (9), Croatia (7), England (11), France (13), Germany (32), Italy (20), Netherlands (19), Portugal (7), and Spain (19) – have won seven or more games at the World Cup.
  • 12 countries have won two or fewer games at the World Cup.
  • UEFA qualifying is cutthroat. Germany and Spain are powerhouses who have made every World Cup, but other powerhouses, such as Italy, the Netherlands, and France, have failed to qualify at least once. Some strong countries, such as Belgium and Portugal, have failed to qualify multiple times.

Exhibit O: CONMEBOL Advancement Place from 1990 – 2014

Image 18

Advancement Stats

  • CONMEBOL has 2 Champions, 3 Runner-Ups, 0 Third Place, and 2 Fourth Place finishes.
    • Champions
      • Brazil (1994)
      • Brazil (2002)
    • Runner-Ups
      • Argentina (1990)
      • Brazil (1998)
      • Argentina (2014)
    • Third Place
    • Fourth Place
      • Uruguay (2010)
      • Brazil (2014)

Home Field Advantage

  • CONMEBOL had its best performance in the 2014 World Cup hosted in Brazil, where Argentina finished as Runner-Up, Brazil finished in Fourth Place, Colombia reached the Quarter-Finals, and Chile and Uruguay reached the Round of 16. This was the only time two CONMEBOL teams made it to the Semi-Finals in the past seven World Cups and only the second time five CONMEBOL teams made it out of the Group Stages.

Exhibit P: CONMEBOL Breakdown by Country from 1990 – 2014

Image 19

  • CONMEBOL has been the second best-performing continent. They have won 74 games and lost 46 games and have outscored opponents by 59 goals
  • Brazil and Argentina have been the two dominant nations and account for the majority of the total Wins, Goals For, Goal Differential, and Points.
  • Every country, except for Bolivia, has more than 10 Points and averages more than 1.1 Points per game.
  • Only eight countries from CONMEBOL have participated in at least one of the past seven World Cups. Peru will increase the total to nine with their qualification for the 2018 World Cup.
  • CONMEBOL qualifying is extremely difficult. Brazil and Argentina are powerhouses who consistently make the World Cup, leaving high quality countries like Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Uruguay fighting for limited spots.
  • Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, and Uruguay each have win-loss records around 50% and Goal Differentials near zero.

Exhibit Q: CONCACAF Advancement Place from 1990 – 2014

Image 20

Advancement Stats

  • CONCACAF has no Champions, Runner-Ups, Third Place, or Fourth Place finishes.
  • CONCACAF’s best result is Quarter-Finals, which has happened two times.
    • USA (2002 – QF)
    • Costa Rica (2014 – QF)
  • CONCACAF has had at least one country advance from the Group Stages at each of the last seven World Cups. Notably, Mexico has made and lost in six consecutive Round of 16’s.
  • The 10 teams to advance out of the Group Stages and lose in Round of 16 are as follows:
    • Costa Rica (1990 – R16)
    • Mexico (1994 – R16)
    • USA (1994 – R16)
    • Mexico (1998 – R16)
    • Mexico (2002 – R16)
    • Mexico (2006 – R16)
    • USA (2010 – R16)
    • Mexico (2010 – R16)
    • Mexico (2014 – R16)
    • USA (2014 – R16)

Home Field Advantage

  • CONCACAF had a relatively strong performance in the 1994 World Cup hosted in USA, where USA and Mexico each reached the Round of 16.
  • The 2002 and 2014 World Cups were more successful where multiple teams advanced out of the Group Stages with one team reaching the Quarter-Finals.

Exhibit R: CONCACAF Breakdown by Country from 1990 – 2014

Image 21

  • CONCACAF has been the third worst-performing continent. They have won 19 games and lost 38 games and the majority of countries have a negative Goal Differential, albeit most are in single digits. Mexico has a +2 Goal Differential.
  • Mexico, USA, and Costa Rica are the only countries with more than 3 Points.
  • Only six countries from CONCACAF have participated in at least one of the past seven World Cups. Panama will increase the total to seven with their qualification for the 2018 World Cup.
  • Honduras, Jamaica, and Trinidad & Tobago have combined for one win in twelve matches and only four goals scored.
  • Mexico (8), USA (5), and Costa Rica (5) are the only multi-game winning countries.
  • Each country has lost more games than they have won except for Mexico who has won, lost, and tied eight games apiece.
  • The countries combined to allow 40 more goals than they scored.

Exhibit S: CAF Advancement Place from 1990 – 2014

Image 22

Advancement Stats

  • CAF has no Champions, Runner-Ups, Third Place, or Fourth Place finishes.
  • CAF’s best result is Quarter-Finals, which has happened three times.
    • Cameroon (1990 – QF)
    • Senegal (2002 – QF)
    • Ghana (2010 – QF)
  • The 5 teams to advance out of the Group Stages and lose in Round of 16 are as follows:
    • Nigeria (1994 – R16)
    • Nigeria (1998 – R16)
    • Ghana (2006 – R16)
    • Algeria (2014 – R16)
    • Nigeria (2014 – R16)

Home Field Advantage

  • CAF had one of its best performances in the 2010 World Cup hosted in South Africa, where Ghana reached the Quarter-Finals.
  • Arguably, the 2014 World Cup was more successful where two CAF countries advanced out of the Group Stages for the first time ever with Algeria and Nigeria reaching the Round of 16.

Exhibit T: CAF Breakdown by Country from 1990 – 2014

Image 23

  • CAF has been the second worst-performing continent. They have won 22 games and lost 55 games and every country except Senegal (+1) has a negative Goal Differential, albeit most are in single digits.
  • Nigeria, Cameroon, and Ghana are the only countries with more than 10 Points. South Africa and Ivory Coast have each earned 10 Points.
  • Togo participated in only one World Cup where they lost all three matches with a combined -5 Goal Differential.
  • Only Nigeria (5), Cameroon (4), Ghana (4), and Ivory Coast (3) have won more than two games, and no country has won more than five games.
  • No country has a winning record at the World Cup except for Senegal.
  • Each country has lost more games than they have won except for Senegal who only participated in 2002 and made the Quarter-Finals. The other three countries that participated in only one World Cup did not advance from the Group Stages and did not win a single match, suggesting Senegal’s run is an outlier.
  • Nigeria (6/8), Cameroon (6/8), and Tunisia (4/8) are the only countries to qualify for at least half of the World Cups, though their performance has been poor. Cameroon has the worst Goal Differential of any country (-25) and Tunisia has yet to win a game.
  • The countries combined to allow 61 more goals than they scored.

Exhibit U: AFC Advancement Place from 1990 – 2014

Image 24

Advancement Stats

  • AFC has no Champions, Runner-Ups, or Third Place finishes
  • AFC’s best result is Fourth Place with South Korea, as co-host nation, in 2002.
  • Besides South Korea (2002), no AFC team has advanced to the Quarter-Finals.
  • The 6 teams to advance out of the Group Stages are as follows:
    • Saudi Arabia (1994 – R16)
    • Japan (2002 – R16)
    • South Korea (2002 – 4P)
    • Australia (2006 – R16)
    • Japan (2010 – R16)
    • South Korea (2010 – R16)

Home Field Advantage

  • AFC had its best performance in the 2002 World Cup hosted in South Korea and Japan, where both of those nations advanced (South Korea to 4P and Japan to R16, respectively) out of the Group Stages.
  • Curiously, China and Saudi Arabia, the other two AFC nations, finished 31st and 32nd in 2002.

Exhibit V: AFC Breakdown by Country from 1990 – 2014

Image 25

  • AFC has been the worst-performing continent. They have won 14 games and lost 52 games and every country has a negative Goal Differential.
  • South Korea and Japan are the only countries with more than 10 Points, and no country averages more than 0.9 Points per match.
  • Three countries (China, North Korea, and UAE) participated in only one World Cup where they lost all three matches with a combined -29 Goal Differential. Yikes!

Image 26

  • Even removing these three outliers (see above), the results are dismal.
  • Only Japan (4) and South Korea (5) have won more than two games, and no country has won more than five games.
  • Each country has lost more than twice as many games as they have won.
  • The countries combined to allow (133) more than twice as many goals than they have scored (66). Each country has a given up at least eight more goals than they have scored.
  • South Korea has qualified for eight consecutive World Cups and Japan has qualified for six consecutive World Cups.

 

To continue on to Part IV – click here.

 

ICYMI, please refer to Part I Introduction & Evaluation of Performance by Confederation.

ICYMI, please refer to Part II Evaluation of Performance by Country.

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