The 2014 World Cup table is set.
On Day 15, the fates of Groups G and H were decided. In Group G, the Group of Death, Germany defeated the United States 1-0 and Portugal beat Ghana 2-1. As a result Germany and the U.S. will advance to the knockout round.
In Group H, Belgium topped South Korea 1-0 and Algeria tied Russia 1-1. Belgium and Algeria will advance while South Korea and Russia watch.
Here are the final group standings as well as odds for the knockout round.
|Final Group Stage Standings|
|3||Bosnia and Herzegovina||3||0||3||1||0||2||4||1|
Brazil vs. Chile
Odds: 63-109 Brazil, 132-25 Chile, 171-50 Draw
Chile doesn't look ready to compete with Brazil based on its play against the Netherlands. Despite Dutch superstar Robin van Persie being sidelined with a yellow-card ban, Chile still lost by the score of 2-0.
Of course, Brazil didn't look too hot against Mexico, which forced a 0-0 draw. But the Brazilians still showed the ability to shut out teams, which Chile just experienced. Also, Brazil doesn't need to worry about a lack of offense thanks to its World Cup-leading goal scorer, Neymar.
Colombia vs. Uruguay
Odds: 1-1 Colombia, 81-25 Uruguay, 253-100 Draw
This means Uruguay won't last one match. The only reason why it advanced in the first place is because Suarez flipped the switch to superhero mode and scored two goals in a 2-1 win over England. It has no chance against Colombia, which has been one of the most dominant teams of the tournament.
Netherlands vs. Mexico
Odds: 29-25 Netherlands, 269-100 Mexico, 251-100 Draw
No team has scored more goals in the World Cup than the Netherlands. And no team has surrendered fewer than Mexico.
While their strengths may offset one another, the Netherlands remains the superior team. It's arguably the team to beat in the tournament and is averaging 2.0 more goals per game than Mexico, which is surrendering just 0.67 fewer goals than the Netherlands.
Costa Rica vs. Greece
Odds: 151-100 Costa Rica, 9-4 Greece, 11-5 Draw
For the first time in the 2014 World Cup, Costa Rica is favored to win a match. It hasn't impressed offensively since its 3-1 thrashing of Uruguay, but its defense has remained dominant. And it couldn't have drawn an easier round-of-16 matchup than Greece.
Greece is the only team in the knockout round that has a negative goal differential, having allowed four goals and scored just two. Costa Rica is unlikely to lose to the worst team in the knockout round after winning arguably the best group.
France vs. Nigeria
Odds: 100-191 France, 166-25 Nigeria, 167-50 Draw
If Nigeria can keep it close in the first half, it has a chance to upset France. But that's much easier said than done.
France embarrassed Honduras 3-0 and Switzerland 5-2. And Switzerland still finished with a better goal differential in the group stage than Nigeria, which needs the same defensive effort that was evident against Iran (0-0) and in the win over Bosnia and Herzegovina (1-0 win)as opposed to the loss against Argentina (3-2).
Germany vs. Algeria
Odds: 10-29 Germany, 46-5 Algeria, 9-2 Draw
Few teams were more dominant in the group stage than Germany. It boasts one of the best goalies in the World Cup in Manuel Neuer and one of the top strikers in Thomas Muller. Those two players alone make Germany an extremely difficult out, but it's also stacked from top to bottom.
Algeria, which barely advanced in one of the worst groups in the tournament, isn't.
Argentina vs. Switzerland
Odds: 20-37 Argentina, 637-100 Switzerland, 163-50 Draw
Argentina is one of only four teams that won all of its group-stage matches. The Argentinians were carried by Lionel Messi, who scored in every match and is tied for the World Cup lead with four goals.
Switzerland has the firepower to keep up with Argentina. The Swiss have actually scored more goals thus far. However, their defense has also surrendered twice as many goals, which will likely be the squad's downfall.
Belgium vs. United States
Odds: 100-109 Belgium, 96-25 United States, 261-100 Draw
The U.S. will enter its third straight match a heavy underdog, but after competing with Germany and Portugal, Belgium is a beatable team. Despite playing in a significantly more difficult group, the U.S. has scored just as many goals as Belgium thus far.
However, Belgium has only surrendered one goal the entire tournament. U.S. goalie Tim Howard must match the phenomenal Thibaut Courtois for the underdogs to have a chance.
David Daniels is a columnist at Bleacher Report. He tweets, too.
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