Pies’ Big, Bold, Brassy, Beautiful 2014 World Cup Predictions

By Chris Wright

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We’re a mere handful of sleeps out from the World Cup now and, as the tournament begins to crown over the horizon, Pies’ thoughts turn, as ever, to making a slew of rash, largely unconsidered predictions as to how the big’n is going to pan out in Brazil.

Both myself and Alan have had a stab, and we invite you to follow suit.

Chris says…

Overall Winner: Argentina, beating Brazil in the Final.

Big name(s) out in the group stage: Italy and Holland. Holland’s ropey defence will let them down. First-choice back-four average roughly 10 caps each.

Surprisingly entertaining ‘dull on paper’ group game: Japan vs Greece has “slobberknocker” written all over it!

Dark horses: Torn between backing Switzerland, Bosnia & Herzegovina or Chile. I’ll plump for B&H.

Top Scorer: Edin Dzeko, with three or four goals all scored in the group stages against Nigeria and Iran.

Tournament MVP: Poster boy, Neymar.

When will France collapse? Assuming they make it to the start of the tournament without imploding in a putrid gaseous vacuum of inter-squad civil lawsuits, Gallic hissy fits and/or strike action, I’m backing Les Bleus to squeak through to the quarters.

England’s progress: Beat Italy 1-0, lose 0-1 to Uruguay, beat Costa Rica 1-0. Fairly kind second-round draw; lose to Ivory Coast/Colombia. Losing with ten minutes to go, bring Danny Welbeck on – everybody gets roundly booed. Home under a cloud.

Alan says…

Overall Winner: Italy.

Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland.

Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: South Korea vs Algeria

Dark horses: Russia.

Top Scorer: Ciro Immobile – the new Toto Schillaci.

Tournament MVP: Cristiano Ronaldo.

When will France collapse? Not until the quarter-finals. They have an easy group and uber-talented powerhouse Paul Pogba.

England’s progress: Out in Group stages.

* * * * *

Okay, we’ve stuck our necks out, now it’s your turn!

Feel free to copy+paste our categories below, fill them in as you see fit and share your predictions with us under the crease in the comments section…

Overall Winner:
Big name(s) out in the group stage:
Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game:
Dark horses:
Top Scorer:
Tournament MVP:
When will France collapse?
England’s progress:

Go, go, go!!!

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27 Comments

  1. Tom says:

    France, beating Argies in final.

    Uruguay, Spain!

    Bosnia – Iran

    Japan, Croatia.

    Aguero in group stage alone.

    Varane.

    In four years.

    A ridiculously ambitious fourth.

  2. Eeny says:

    Overall Winner: Germany
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Portugal
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Iran vs Nigeria
    Dark horses: Switzerland
    Top Scorer: Neymar
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? Group stages
    England’s progress: Semi final

  3. nick.jones@afpwales.com' Nick says:

    Overall Winner: ARGENTINA!
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: ITALY
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: JAPAN V GREECE!
    Dark horses: CHILE
    Top Scorer: LEO MESSI
    Tournament MVP: NEYMAR
    When will France collapse? GROUP STAGE
    England’s progress: LAST 16

  4. asdf@asdf.com' Aaron says:

    Overall Winner: Argentina, just for the look on Neymar’s face

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland, Ivory Coast if they count as big

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Columbia v Ivory Coast. Goals goals goals.

    Dark horses: France

    Top Scorer: Messi seems to have been saving himself all season

    Tournament MVP: Koscielny if France go far enough

    When will France collapse?: Not at all

    England’s progress: Good group stages, breeding hope of glory. Shocking knockouts, out to someone rubbish in the first KO round.

  5. punz007@hotmail.co.uk' Puneet says:

    Overall Winner: Spain
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland, Portugal
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: ALgeria 2-3 Russia
    Dark horses: Chile/Russia – Quarter-Finals
    Top Scorer: Neymar and Ozil – 5 each
    Tournament MVP: Griezmann – stunning performances to get France to QFs only to get crushed by ze Germans.
    When will France collapse? Quarter-Finals
    England’s progress: Quarter-Finals – demolished in 30 minutes by the Spaniards.

    Take a screenshot of this when I’m proved correct for all these perfect predictions! ;) x

  6. w.swayne@web.de' Bill says:

    Ok, I’ll bite:

    Overall Winner: England
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Germany, Italy
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Nigeria Vs. Bosnia & Herzegovina
    Dark horses: England, USA
    Top Scorer: Daniel Sturridge
    Tournament MVP: Daniel Sturridge
    When will France collapse? Last 16
    England’s progress: Winners

    Go ahead, make my day.

  7. mark27farrell@gmail.com' Mark says:

    Overall Winner: Spain
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland, England
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Bosnia/Iran
    Dark horses: Chile
    Top Scorer: Lukaku
    Tournament MVP: Iniesta
    When will France collapse? Runners up in group to the swiss, knocked out in the next round.
    England’s progress: Knocked out in the groups.

  8. benjaminbeuse@gmail.com' Ben says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Uruguay
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Algeria – Russia
    Dark horses: Belgium
    Top Scorer: Neymar
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? Right after group stage due to ‘too much work’ for the players
    England’s progress: 1/8 Finals

  9. Michael says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Portugal
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Hondurs v Ecuador – the tackling/fighting should epic (Valencia v Izaguirre!!!)
    Dark horses: B&H
    Top Scorer: Hulk
    Tournament MVP: Oscar
    When will France collapse?Second Round – Deschamps wondering onto the pitch in a fit of anger v B&H to dispute a controversial penalty
    England’s progress: Group Stage Exit :(

  10. thompa12@hotmail.co.uk' AT says:

    Overall Winner: Spain
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Nigeria v Iran
    Dark horses: France? or Croatia
    Top Scorer: Messi
    Tournament MVP: Pogba
    When will France collapse? Semi’s
    England’s progress: Out in group

    Eng draw with italy and lose to Uruguay meaning that Italy and Uruguay will need to draw to both go through.

  11. funkymacho@mail.ru' timur says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Spain, Germany
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: POR – USA
    Dark horses: Chile, USA
    Top Scorer: Dzeko
    Tournament MVP: Thiago Silva
    When will France collapse? Semifinals
    England’s progress: 3rd in group

  12. Salimchoudart@yahoo.fr' Salim says:

    Overall winner : brazil
    Big names out in the group stage : holland (and england)
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” : croatia-mexico
    Dark horses : chile, nigeria
    Top scorer : fred
    Tournament mvp : thiago silva
    When will France collapse? Quarter finals. Max
    England’s progress : first round, loses to Italy after Rooney gets a red card for tackling De Rossi, and Pirlo scores a free kick.

  13. roshan.hingorani@hotmail.com' Roshan says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Netherlands/England
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Iran v Bosnia
    Dark horses: Belgium
    Top Scorer: Neymar
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? QFs
    England’s progress: Group stage

  14. freakinformby@gmail.com' Russ says:

    Overall Winner: Argentina
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Portugal & Holland
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Australia vs. Holland
    Dark horses: Belgium
    Top Scorer: Messi
    Tournament MVP: Messi
    When will France collapse? Round of 16
    England’s progress: SFs (out on penalties, naturally)

  15. ekthesy@gmail.com' Matt says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: France
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game:
    Dark horses: Chile, Cote d’Ivoire, Uruguay
    Top Scorer: Neymar
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? Group stages
    England’s progress: Will beat Costa Rica but no one else

  16. greg.evans25@gmail.com' Greg says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Uruguay and Netherlands
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game:Nigeria v Bosnia
    Dark horses:Belgium
    Top Scorer: Lionel Messi
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? Quarter finals
    England’s progress:Quater Finals

  17. JwdRyan@hotmail.com' Monkfish says:

    Overall Winner: BRAZIL
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: ENGLAND
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: S.KOREA V ALGERIA
    Dark horses: BELGIUM
    Top Scorer: LUKAKU
    Tournament MVP: NEYMAR
    When will France collapse? GROUP STAGE
    England’s progress: GROUP STAGE MAX

  18. Mario Lucero says:

    Overall Winner Germany (beating Argentina)
    Big name(s) out in the group stage:
    Portugal & Mexico
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Japan VS Ivory coast
    Dark horses: Good ol’ US OF A (Murica)& Belgium
    Top Scorer: Eden Hazard
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? 2nd round
    England’s progress: 2nd round

  19. pokota@mhtc.net' Fat Nakago says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: England; Netherlands; Portugal

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Japan vs. Côte d’Ivoire

    Dark horses: Chile; Bosnia; USA

    Top Scorer: Jozy Altidore

    Tournament MVP: Marcelo

    When will France collapse? When they lose 2-1 to USA in the QF

    England’s progress: Ha ha ha. REALLY?

  20. mlucero39@yahoo.com' mlucero39 says:

    Overall Winner: Germany
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Portugal&Mexico
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Japan vs. Ivory Coast
    Dark horses: Good o’l US of A & Belgium
    Top Scorer: Eden Hazard
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? 2nd round
    England’s progress 2nd round

  21. Jaydan29klus@hotmail.com' Jay Kay says:

    Overall winner: Germany.

    Big names out in the group stage: England, France.

    Surprising entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Australia vs Chile.

    Dark Horses: Switzerland, Japan.

    Top Scorer: Mario Götze

    Tournament MVP: Andrea Pirlo

    When will France collapse: They beat themselves after they draw their first match.

    England’s Progress: England’s only win at the World Cup comes in a possession drill at training.

  22. caseyr4@gmail.com' Rory says:

    Overall Winner: Argentina

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland/ Portugal

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game:

    Dark horses: Chile/Bosnia

    Top Scorer: Aguero

    Tournament MVP: Leo Messi

    When will France collapse? I think they’ll have a good tournament, 1/4s minimum

    England’s progress: Out in group stages

  23. stuartpayne75@gmail.com' squiggle says:

    Overall Winner: Brazil

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Netherlands, England

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: South Korea vs Algeria

    Dark horses: Do Belgium still count as dark horses? Belgium and France.

    Top Scorer: Aguero

    Tournament MVP: Ronaldo

    When will France collapse? They won’t. Unlikely to go beyond the quarters this time but they’ll do well.

    England’s progress: Group stages

  24. James says:

    Overall Winner: Spain

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland, Uruguay

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Cameroon v Mexico

    Dark horses: France, Bosnia

    Top Scorer: Gonzalo Higuain

    Tournament MVP: Xavi

    When will France collapse? In the semi finals

    England’s progress: Plucky losers in the quarterfinals.

  25. danielgeorgebotha@gmail.com' Daniel says:

    Overall Winner: France

    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Holland

    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Chile vs Australia

    Dark horses: Colombia, Belgium, Croatia.

    Top Scorer: Agüero (if no injury niggles – otherwise Klose)

    Tournament MVP: Özil

    When will France collapse? Winners (egos like Ribery and Nasri out; exciting youngsters like Griezmann and Pogba in)

    England’s progress: last 16 (exciting new generation held back by boring tactics and uninspiring Rooney)

  26. Wesley says:

    Nice to see you ruling out Holland, but I’m actually pretty confident :)

    Overall Winner: Argentina
    Big name(s) out in the group stage: Uruguay (Spain)
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game: Japan VS Ivory coast
    Dark horses: Holland, Belgium, France.
    Top Scorer: Neymar
    Tournament MVP: Neymar
    When will France collapse? Semi’s
    England’s progress: Last 16.

  27. kalezumack@hotmail.com' kalezu says:

    Overall Winner:Argentina
    Big name(s) out in the group stage:England, Portugal
    Surprisingly entertaining “dull on paper” group game:Croatia Vs Mexico
    Dark horses:Belgium
    Top Scorer:Neymar
    Tournament MVP:Messi
    When will France collapse? Quarter Final
    England’s progress:Group stage

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