The 200% World Cup: Brazil 2014 By Numbers
Our resident obsessive-compulsive Dotmund has been busy drawing other things biting other things, and so has let World Cup artwork slide. Which is a relief to everyone. However, his real love in life is lists and attempting to ascribe numerical order to chaos. This is because he’s an idiot, or has too much time on his hands, or both. Here is his guide to this summer’s shenanigans from a numerological perspective.
There have been no teams who failed to score at the 2014 World Cup. Two failed to trouble the onion bag in South Africa. Zero is also, less positively, the number of games at this summer’s tournament won by teams from the Asian Football Confederation.
Only one person has missed a penalty in regulation time at this World Cup so far: Karim Benzema, for France during Les Bleus pulsating 5-2 victory over Switzerland. He scored twice in the match anyway, and had another goal disallowed because the referee blew for full time before the ball hit the back of the net. He also took the shot that Honduran goalkeeper Noel Valladares turned over his own goal line. Had all three of these goals that never were actually been, Benzema would be in the joint lead to be the tournament’s top scorer.
There have been 2 hat tricks scored at the 2014 World Cup: Thomas Müller (for Germany versus Portugal) and Xherdan Shaqiri (for Switzerland against Honduras). Argentina’s Gonzalo Higuain scored the sole hat trick of the 2010 edition, whilst at Germany 2006 there were none at all.
Goals per game at the 2014 World Cup. Four years ago, the figure was 2.27. In other terms, even if the final two matches in Brazil finish goalless, this summer’s tournament would still outscore its predecessor by 0.34 goals a game. Which is about as many as England score.
Number of assists made by Juan Guillermo Cuadrado of Colombia and Toni Kroos (Germany), the highest of the World Cup. Germany’s Thomas Müller is next up with 3. James Rodriguez of Colombia made two goals, which means that a single goal in the final will see Müller become the first man in history to win the Golden Shoe at consecutive World Cup finals.
Four is also the number of clean sheets kept so far by Sergio Romero of Argentina, a tournament high, and the number of consecutive World Cup finals in which record goalscorer Miroslav Klose has scored at least one goal.
Four is a very popular number at Brazil 2014. As well as being the squad number of its finest defender – David Luiz of Brazil – it is ALSO the number of penalty shootouts that there have been so far in the tournament, up from two at South Africa 2010.
Natal’s Arena das Dunas was the worst place to go if goals are your bag, with just five scored there during the four games it hosted.
Goals scored by the leader of the Golden Shoe (née Golden Boot) Award standings, James Rodriguez of Colombia. He is the first player to score more than five goals at the World Cup finals since Ronaldo scored 8 in Japan and South Korea 2002.
Is the most goals scored in a single game, predictably this came in the semi-final between Germany and Brazil. The highest scoring game of the 2010 World Cup was Portugal’s 7-0 victory over North Korea.
The most cards shown in a single game at this summer’s tournament, the not-particularly-ill-tempered encounter between Costa Rica and Greece saw one red and eight yellow cards shown. Nine is also the number of games at the tournament where no cards were shown at all, a big improvement on only two four years ago.
There have been ten red cards in Brazil 2014. The corresponding figure for the completed 2010 tournament was 17, meaning that it is unlikely to be beaten with only two matches yet to be completed. Unless… Howard Webb isn’t refereeing either of them, is he?
Costa Rica are the most ill-disciplined team of the tournament, with 12 bookings in total. The worst offenders at the 2010 World Cup received over twice that, the Netherlands accruing 25. Although most of those were Nigel De Jong.
16 is the new high watermark for World Cup finals goalscoring, established by Germany’s Miroslav Klose’s second goal of the tournament in the semi final with Brazil. Klose scored five goals in 2002, five again in 2006 (where he won the Golden Shoe), four in South Africa and two (so far) in Brazil.
Germany are the tournament’s top scorers, with 17. All of these were scored in the semi final with Brazil of course. Der Mannschaft were also the top scorers at the last World Cup, with 16.
Julian Green became the youngest player to score in the 2014 World Cup, for the United States against Belgium, aged 19 years and 25 days.
Goals were scored at Salvador’s Arena Fonte Nova, the highest of any venue at this World Cup. It hosted six games.
According to the list issued by FIFA’s Technical Committee, England were the 26th best team at the 2014 Finals. One better than South Korea, one worse than Ghana. But if this post itself proves anything, it’s that statistics can be misleading things.
The 32nd ranked – i.e. worst – team in Brazil this summer, meanwhile, were Cameroon. 32 was also the temperature, in degrees Centigrade, which saw the World Cup’s first ever mandatory Cooling Break taken, during the Netherlands vs Mexico second round match in Fortaleza. Happily enough, it took place in the 32nd minute.
Xherdan Shaqiri’s hat trick for Switzerland was the fiftieth hat trick scored at a World Cup finals.
The percentage of their games won by teams from CONMEBOL. The North and Central American Confederation was the most proportionately successful of the five FIFA Confederations represented at the 2014 World Cup finals.
The percentage of penalties successfully converted during penalty shootouts at the 2014 tournament.
The percentage of penalties successfully converted during regulation time at the 2014 tournament.
There have been 167 goals scored at the 2014 World Cup, with two matches yet to be played. There were only 145 in the entire 2010 tournament.
The number of yellow cards shown at the 2014 World Cup finals. This compares very favourably with the 2010 edition, where there were 241 bookings. Or to put it another way, each and every player could be cautioned in both of the remaining matches and Brazil 2014 would still be 7 yellow cards short of South Africa 2010’s tally.
Teams took part in the 2014 World Cup. The real hardcore fans amongst you will probably know that only two remain active.
The capacity of the Estadio do Maracana in Rio de Janeiro, which will host this Sunday’s final. A capacity crowd will see an attendance almost 10,000 lower than the 2010 World Cup Final at Soccer City, Johannesburg. The previous occasion on which the Maracana was the venue for the World Cup Final in 1950 saw the highest attendance ever recorded for a single football match: 173,850.
Luis Suarez’s fine, in Swiss Francs, for biting Giorgio Chiellini in Uruguay’s 1-0 victory over Italy. I imagine you can probably get loads of his stuff on eBay if you look carefully as the poor dear struggles to pay it off.
The sum of money, in US Dollars, awarded to the 16 teams eliminated in the group stage of the 2014 World Cup. And I’m sure we can rely on the FA not to just fritter it away on some utterly futile, needless white elephant project or other.
This is the sum, in US Dollars, that will be paid by FIFA to the winners of the tournament on Sunday. Presumably this fee goes to the Football Association of the victorious nation, rather than just being left in used notes in a suitcase dropped off of a motorway overpass. But who knows.