04 June 2010

Please Join My World Cup Bracket Compeition

Over the coming days I'll be discussing various methodologies for making World Cup predictions, ranging from ostentatiously sophisticated economic and financial approaches to naive forecasts based on simple economics to using the odds from the handicappers and others (suggestions welcomed). I'll keep track of these various predictions and their performance using ESPN Soccernets World Cup Bracket Predictor.

I have just now created a group, creatively titled, RogersBlogGroup which is public. I'd like to invite you to join and see how your predictions stack up against the various approaches to prediction, which I'll be discussing throughout the Cup (other topics will be relegated for a short while;-). To join the group you simply need to sign up for a login, associate it with my group and and then enter your selections.

Good luck and remember ... prediction is difficult, especially about the future!


  1. Not a serious prediction, so I won't enter it at ESPN, but it's not inconceivable that England and the USA will meet in the final. Both teams would have to play out of their skins, of course, but if South Africa wields its Host Nation Joker Card against Argentina and Spain implodes under the weight of its egos against Italy, the USA should have an easier path in the knock-out stages because they'll likely meet a couple of teams that can be even flakier than England (Germany and Italy) whereas England will meet solid opposition all the way. And when the USA beats South Africa in the quarter-finals, some of the home support will switch to them, which means, all in all, that I might as well place a bet on the USA winning the whole thing.

    That's all based on ignorance. I haven't followed football since some time in the last century. But why not? The odds on the USA winning the whole thing are currently about 80/1. England: 7/1. I know England will screw up somewhere along the line, so 80/1 somehow seems a better deal.

    So there's another approach you might monitor: invincible ignorance.

  2. Using my super-computer, I can only make projections, not predictions. ;-)

  3. Through many years of football prediction using models, I have found them to be reasonable at hindcasting, but rather sensitive to assumptions (fudge factors) that I must make. Forecasting (especially to make money) is much harder.