Go to the Globe and Mail homepage

Jump to main navigationJump to main content

Brazilian soccer fan Marilza Guimaraes da Silva, 63, plays with a ball as she poses for picture, dressed in one of her many outfits matching the colors of the Brazil's national flag (green, yellow, white and blue) at her home in Brasilia May 27, 2014. (STRINGER/BRAZIL/REUTERS)
Brazilian soccer fan Marilza Guimaraes da Silva, 63, plays with a ball as she poses for picture, dressed in one of her many outfits matching the colors of the Brazil's national flag (green, yellow, white and blue) at her home in Brasilia May 27, 2014. (STRINGER/BRAZIL/REUTERS)

World Cup: Stacking up the odds of world’s most popular sport Add to ...

Previous World Cup appearances: 2

FIFA world ranking: 28

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.4

The team: Led by Manchester United’s Antonio Valencia, Ecuador is a team that could potentially sneak into the next round the same way it did in Germany in 2006.

The economy: While the country’s “real GDP growth slowed to 4.5 per cent in 2013 from a recent peak of 7.8 per cent in 2011,” IMF forecasts say that the economy is “likely to grow at a more moderate pace from here.”

 

France

Previous World Cup appearances: 13 (1 Win)

FIFA world ranking: 16

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.8

The team: Since they won in 1998, France’s performance has been volatile having reached the finals in 2006, but not making it out of the group stages in 2002 and 2010.

The economy: In contrast to their World Cup performance, “the growth performance of the French economy has been the least volatile of all of this year’s 32 World Cup participants.”

 

Honduras

Previous World Cup appearances: 2

FIFA world ranking: 30

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0

The team: Group E’s indisputable dark horse has yet to secure a World Cup win having failed to make it past the group stages in 1982 and 2010

The economy: The country’s economic growth has been volatile, but “favourable terms of trade, a recovering coffee sector and higher growth in Honduras’s key trading partners should help lower the current account deficit.”

 

Switzerland

Previous World Cup appearances: 9

FIFA world ranking: 8

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.4

The team: Led by Johan Djourou and Philippe Senderos, Switzerland’s stout defence has been integral to their current ranking and will dictate whether they move on to the knock-out rounds.

The economy: Switzerland’s economy has been better in the “post-crisis period than any other major Western European economy.”

 

Argentina

Previous World Cup appearances: 15 (Won 2)

FIFA world ranking: 7

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 14.1

The team: Once again a favourite to win it all, Argentina will look to Messi to lead this squad to the finals and cement his status as one of the greatest players in history.

The economy: Argentina “is suffering from a combination of elevated inflation and declining economic activity amid a swift deterioration in its external accounts.”

 

Bosnia and Herzegovina

Previous World Cup appearances: 0

FIFA world ranking: 25

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.2

The team: Making its first appearance since becoming an independent nation state, Bosnia and Herzegovina has the potential to sneak through to the knock-out rounds.

The economy: Since it became an independent nation state in 1995, “Bosnia and Herzegovina has staged a solid post-war recovery.”

 

Iran

Previous World Cup appearances: 3

FIFA world ranking: 37

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.1

The team: Despite its long soccer history, “even locally, [Iran’s] hopes are not high” for it to move on to the next round considering its difficult group.

The Economy: “Partly due to the sharp deterioration in its macro conditions, its economic and political isolation and the ongoing rigidity of its political structure, Iran has slipped down the rankings of our Growth Environment Scores in the last few years.”

 

Nigeria

Previous World Cup appearances: 4

FIFA world ranking: 44

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0.1

The team: Strong play from Nigeria at the World Cup will go a long way to solidify its place as Africa’s top nation.

The economy: 2014 will be a year that Nigeria will look to cement its place as Africa’s best team “by confirming its reigning title as 2013 Africa Cup of Nations’ champions.”

 

Germany

Previous World Cup appearances: 17 (Won 3)

FIFA world ranking: 2

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 11.4

The team: Head coach Jogi Low will look to play an attacking style of soccer that he hopes will help Germany survive the tournament’s toughest group.

The economy: A stable German economy is expected to have “solid growth of around 2 per cent this year and next” and “is also more balanced than before the crisis.”

 

Ghana

Previous World Cup appearances: 2

FIFA world ranking: 38

Goldman Sachs’ probability of winning: 0

Single page

Follow on Twitter: @omarelakkad

 

In the know

Most popular videos »

Highlights

More from The Globe and Mail

Most popular