Before We All Get Carried Away…

…about how we’re going to win the World Cup in Brazil in 2014, here are some stats to consider:

* Howard Webb is English and he’s a policeman. From Rotherham.

* There have been seven World Cup tournaments held in North, Central and South America. All seven have been won by teams from South America – but  worryingly for Brazil, the hosts have won only two of them (Uruguay in 1930, Argentina in 1978)

* Howard Webb is will be 43 in 2014, so he probably won’t be refereeing in Brazil.

* England have never got past the quarter finals in the four ‘American’ tournaments we qualified for. Our best performance in South America was the quarter finals in Chile in 1962, which was the last time we played in a South American World Cup. The last World Cup game we played in North, Central or South America was the ‘Hand Of God’ game…which is a almost a quarter of a century ago anyway!

* Howard Webb is from Rotherham, which is nearly 6000 miles from Johannesburg. It’ll probably be warmer in Rotherham today…but let’s see how Howard Webb (the English referee who’s a policeman from Rotherham) handles the heat of the World Cup final! We’ll be back after an annoying Hyundai advert about cars playing football.

Not sure who’s going to win tonight, but Holland’s price is probably far too big – however, the stat I like is that the country which eliminates Germany from the competition is far more likely to win it than the one that eliminates Brazil; it should probably be Spain in that case, but there have been a couple of times when Brazil were knocked out by countries that went on to win for the first time – Argentina in 1978 and France in 1998 – but both of them were hosts, which seems to count against Holland.

Let’s just hope the game is a good one. Unlike any of ours.

Update: my wife has just berated me for not knowing that Howard Webb’s wife is called Kay. Good job the BBC made up for this omission.

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