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World Cup squads ranked 32-1 by PST staff; Who wins it? How’d US do?

May 19, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

The ProSoccerTalk staff has weighed in on the 2014 World Cup’s 32 participating nations. Each writer was asked to submit their 1-32 rankings, and each vote counted toward the final list. The lowest combined score would be our number 1.

Following our rankings, you’ll see our group of death, “easiest” group, most surprising ouster and “highest” advancement. You’ll also be able to see how the tournament plays out from the Group Stages to the final.

It’s a good tournament to be a CONMEBOL squad, and a rough time to be from CONCACAF. Without further ado, let’s get to the rankings.

source: AP32. Iran (152 points)
Highest vote: 32 (three)
Lowest vote: 27

T-30. Australia (151 points)
Highest vote: 32
Lowest vote: 28

T-30. Algeria (151 points)
Highest vote: 32
Lowest vote: 27

29. Honduras (133 points)
Highest vote: 30
Lowest vote: 18

28. Cameroon (131 points)
Highest vote: 29
Lowest vote: 22

T-26. South Korea (130 points)
Highest vote: 30
Lowest vote: 22

T-26. Costa Rica (130 points)
Highest vote: 31
Lowest vote: 16

25. Mexico (121 points)
Highest vote: 28
Lowest vote: 19


24. Nigeria (116 points)
Highest vote: 27
Lowest vote: 20

23. Ecuador (114 points)
Highest vote: 26
Lowest vote: 20

22. Greece (112 points)
Highest vote: 25
Lowest vote: 20

21. Ghana (103 points)
Highest vote: 28
Lowest vote: 11

20. Japan (97 points)
Highest vote: 24
Lowest vote: 13

19. Bosnia and Herzegovina (94 points)
Highest vote: 25
Lowest vote: 13

18. Switzerland (92 points)
Highest vote: 20
Lowest vote: 17

17. Croatia (85 points)
Highest vote: 23
Lowest vote: 11

source: Reuters

16. England (80 points)
Highest vote: 24
Lowest vote: 9

15. United States (78 points)
Highest vote: 19
Lowest vote: 10

T-13. Russia (69 points)
Highest vote: 16
Lowest vote: 12

T-13. Ivory Coast (69 points)
Highest vote: 23
Lowest vote: 6

12. Netherlands (63 points)
Highest vote: 20
Lowest vote: 7

11. Colombia (59 points)
Highest vote: 17
Lowest vote: 8

10. Portugal (56 points)
Highest vote: 18
Lowest vote: 5

9. Chile (50 points)
Highest vote: 15
Lowest vote: 5

source: Getty Images8. France (46 points)
Highest vote: 11
Lowest vote: 6

7. Belgium (37 points)
Highest vote: 11
Lowest vote: 5

6. Uruguay (34 points)
Highest vote: 8
Lowest vote: 4

5. Italy (28 points)
Highest vote: 11
Lowest vote: 2

4. Argentina (21 points)
Highest vote: 8
Lowest vote: 2

3. Spain (17 points, one No. 1  vote)
Highest vote: 7
Lowest vote: 1

2. Germany (16 points)
Highest vote: 4
Lowest vote: 2

1. Brazil (6 points, four No. 1 votes)
Highest vote: 2
Lowest vote: 1

Following our points guide, how would our tournament play out?

Group of death: Group G (Germany, Portugal, United States, Ghana)
Easiest group: Group H (Belgium, Algeria, Russia, South Korea)
Lowest seed eliminated in group stage: Netherlands (12)
Highest seed to advance to Round of 16: Bosnia and Herzegovina (19)

source: Getty ImagesRound of 16:
Brazil (A1) def. Chile (B2)
Uruguay (D2) def. Colombia (C1)
France (E1) def. Bosnia and Herzegovina (F2)
Germany (G1) def. Russia (H2)
Spain (B1) def. Croatia (A2)
Italy (D1) def. Ivory Coast (C2)
Argentina (F1) def. Switzerland (E2)
Belgium (H1) def. Portugal (G2)

Spain (B1) def. Italy (D1)
Argentina (F1) def. Belgium (H1)
Brazil (A1) def. Uruguay (D2)
Germany (G1) def. France (E1)

Brazil (A1) def. Germany (G1)
Spain (B1) def. Argentina (F1)

Brazil (A1) def. Spain (B1)

  1. greej1938l - May 19, 2014 at 12:55 PM

    No major upsets. Nice easy route taken

  2. Greg - May 19, 2014 at 1:07 PM

    Chalk apart from Uruguay

    • Nicholas Mendola - May 19, 2014 at 1:08 PM


      Paraphrasing, but the article says it’s how the World Cup would play out if we followed the chalk of our own rankings.

  3. adroste13 - May 19, 2014 at 1:28 PM

    I guess based on these rankings, and what other ‘experts’ say Group G, (Germany, Portugal, Ghana and USA), is the Group of Death, however I find Group D the real Group of Death, (Uruguay, England, Italy and Costa Rica).
    One of the writers ranked Spain as high as 7? Really?

    • michael03m - May 19, 2014 at 1:38 PM

      I would say neither of those is the group of death. In terms of which group has the best teams – it’s safe to say group B wins that hands down.

  4. hildezero - May 19, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    So if the US advances from the Group Of Death, they can face the easy group, H?

  5. atxnole - May 19, 2014 at 2:20 PM

    Croatia is far too low IMO. I think Ivory Coast is probably ranked a bit too high as well.

  6. fantom21 - May 19, 2014 at 3:12 PM

    US ranked higher than Croatia, Switzerland, Greece, and Ghana? Ok.

  7. navyeoddavee9 - May 19, 2014 at 3:14 PM

    US ranked higher than England?

  8. lunasceiling - May 19, 2014 at 3:45 PM

    US ranked higher than England and Switzerland.

    Oh, God, my sides…

  9. wandmdave - May 19, 2014 at 4:32 PM

    Wow. I love me some USA but 15 seems generous.

  10. mdac1012 - May 19, 2014 at 7:03 PM

    I am obviously rooting for the U.S. but having them ahead of England is comical. We don’t have one player that would start on England, and outside of Michael Bradley and Tim Howard, name me another player that would even make the England team?

    • thegingninj - May 19, 2014 at 7:27 PM

      Yea, this is a bit of stretch… we are ranked about 10 spots too low

    • thaddeusballpheasant - May 20, 2014 at 3:31 AM

      You won’t find many people claiming the USMNT to be stocked with better players than England, but it’s not out of the question for the team to perform similarly to better than England (which happened in 2002 and 2010).
      England is notorious for being a team of talented players that find new ways of letting down their country each WC.

  11. el timo - May 19, 2014 at 8:26 PM

    I don’t get this whole exercise. The US is coming home, unable to advance past Port or Germ. Donovan, Shmonovan, it don’t matter. But I’ll tell you what, we at Toronto FC will be happy to have Michael back early, and four years from now the US will be much tougher on an aging Ronaldo and his ilk with Nick Hagglund starting in Central Defense.

  12. thewalkoffktxt - May 19, 2014 at 9:07 PM

    Remember, this is a country of both optimists and openly cynical anti-USA soccer fans, who gleefully put down the USA for not being up to their unrealistic, flatly biased, and highly snobby perceptions of Americans playing soccer.

    That being said…I thought USA were going to be in the late teens. Or 20’s. Their virtue of “hard work” to solve all their problems only works so far against superior national teams. Ronaldo is Ronaldo, and I can’t see anyone besides Portugal and Germany advancing. The real truth is: will Ghana be last, or third?

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