I’m a big fan of Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight.com. For anyone interested in in-depth statistical analysis of sports, politics, economics, and culture presented in engaging and interactive formats, I really suggest you visit the site. As fans of the beautiful game, I’m sure that the site’s club soccer predictions will be particularly interesting for readers of the Soccer Politics Blog. Arsenal fans, please note the <1% chance you have been given to qualify for the UEFA Champions League and lament accordingly.
Recently, I stumbled across a FiveThirtyEight quiz titled “Which World Cup Team Should You Root For?” While this piece is less serious and against the grain of what FiveThirtyEight usually publishes, I decided it would be fun to fill out being that my beloved United States Men’s National Team will not be making the trip to Russia this summer (shoutout to not only Trinidad but also Tobago).
Let’s take a walk through the questions and my responses to them:
I mean, I’m an American. Why would the underdog myth embedded in the American psyche lead me to choose anything else?
I already chose that I want an underdog. An underdog with a one-man army isn’t going far. I want my underdog to have a chance of actually winning. It needs to be a team effort.
These responses are kind of dumb. Nonetheless, I don’t need a lot of goals and I definitely despise 0-0 draws. So I guess I want to see a balanced team out there.
I don’t get the point of this question. Does the first response mean I want my center back to shoot the ball as soon as he gets it on his own half of the pitch? All teams set up their shots. That’s kind of how the game works.
I need a hard-nosed and physical team. Plain and simple.
I’m fine being the only one who cares. Everyone across the country is going to be cheering for a random team and trying to justify it anyways, so I feel like I’ll be the status quo. Yeah, I’m sure it’d be cool to meet some expats wearing the same jersey, but trust me no matter the results of this quiz I won’t be going out and buying a jersey.
The other one gives me a headache.
So let’s see who I’m going to be rooting for….
Switzerland! That’s so….fun. Definitely.
For fans of the US National Team or any other team that has failed to qualify for this summer’s World Cup looking for a computer algorithm to tell you who to root for this summer, follow the hyperlink above and fill out the quiz. You should then arbitrarily cheer your brains out for the team you get. Given the void in all of our hearts, we need something to root for.