Uruguay v Russia in the world cup might be more interesting than you think.

By Bulldog Drummond

As you may recall I have been posting about predicting possible England results in the World Cup through looking for sequences, and following a few emails and comments decided to take the plunge and expand this approach further.

You might also recall that the process is very simple: it focuses on the issue of looking for runs of results, and then assuming that the run will continue.  Of course, no run goes on forever, because every team can suddenly exceed their expectations and one team can be too relaxed and think it is all too easy. So the system is not perfect – but it is simple and it got the England result right.

I don’t have any special knowledge here – just a load of facts and figures; you can check odds from William Hill. And when you do you might like to note a few odd and unpredictable local conditions. We might for example remember Walsall v Arsenal, perhaps the most famous although by no means the only Arsenal defeat to a lower league club. For that match Chapman rested much of the first team and tried out some previously untried reserve team players.

There was no limit on the number of spectators allowed in, and they ended up standing on the touch line doing everything possible to intimidate the players, with the pitch itself being nothing but mud. The inexperienced squad couldn’t cope.

So strange things can happen, and thinking of this I have chosen Uruguay v Russia for my next attempt at prediction. The game is on 25 June.

You may have heard that questions are being asked not just about Russia’s previous results but also the performance of their players, not least because the three players who have covered more ground than anyone else in the World Cup in the opening games are all Russian!  

Golovin has covered 11,853m in 90 minutes, Samedov 11,679m and Gazinsky 11,392m. The nearest rival is Toni Kroos on 11,251m

So my point is oddities need to be taken into account. Will those Russians run just as much in this match?

I suspect not. I suspect they won’t be playing in fact and that will affect the result.

Russia of course, being the home nation, haven’t played competitive games for a while so that again can influence what we see – I really am giving myself a fair number of challenges here!

Date Match Result Score Competition
07 Oct 2017 Russia v Korea Republic W 4-2 International Friendly
10 Oct 2017 Russia v Iran D 1-1 International Friendly
11 Nov 2017 Russia v Argentina L 0-1 International Friendly
14 Nov 2017 Russia v Spain D 3-3 International Friendly
23 Mar 2018 Russia v Brazil L 0-3 International Friendly
27 Mar 2018 Russia v France L 1-3 International Friendly
30 May 2018 Austria v Russia L 1-0 International Friendly
05 Jun 2018 Russia v Turkey D 1-1 International Friendly
14 Jun 2018 Russia v Saudi Arabia W 5-0 FIFA World Cup
19 Jun 2018 Russia v Egypt W 3-1 FIFA World Cup

Who would have predicted those two wins after such a poor run of games prior to that – four defeats and two draws!

As for Uruguay…

Curiously their run is the same

Date Match Result Score Competition
31 Aug 2017 Uruguay v Argentina D 0-0 FIFA World Cup
05 Sep 2017 Paraguay v Uruguay W 1-2 FIFA World Cup
05 Oct 2017 Venezuela v Uruguay D 0-0 FIFA World Cup
10 Oct 2017 Uruguay v Bolivia W 4-2 FIFA World Cup
10 Nov 2017 Poland v Uruguay D 0-0 International Friendly
14 Nov 2017 Austria v Uruguay L 2-1 International Friendly
23 Mar 2018 Uruguay v Czech Republic W 2-0 International Friendly
26 Mar 2018 Wales v Uruguay W 0-1 China Cup
08 Jun 2018 Uruguay v Uzbekistan W 3-0 International Friendly
15 Jun 2018 Egypt v Uruguay W 0-1 FIFA World Cup
20 Jun 2018 Uruguay v Saudi Arabia W 1-0 FIFA World Cup

They have been doing well but not scoring quite so often – five consecutive wins, following a sequence of two wins, three draws and one defeat.

I have selected this match not just because of the oddity of the Russian players’ running levels, but also because there is one other factor: the group is already done and dusted – both these teams have qualified.

I would guess that because both teams have been winning recently, a good result to look for would be a draw.

I don’t think Uruguay will let Russia run away with another goal fest, and I suspect Russia will change its squad around.

Uruguay’s three goalless draws show that they know how to shut up shop. I’d go with that. 0-0, with a second option of 1-1.

Of course I don’t have any special knowledge – I just find charts interesting.  

8 Replies to “Uruguay v Russia in the world cup might be more interesting than you think.”

  1. Funny, isn’t it, how the English commentators are complaining about the very thing that is so deeply entrenched in British football culture, and something that is a widely accepted tactic to use whilst playing against Arsenal; if a player is more skillful than you, just hack them down.

  2. Watching the England match 2-0 30 min…Panama seem set up with a diamond in the midfield and England don’t seem to be trying at all to pass up the middle. Just defenders passing it slowly back and forth and then thumping it long. Panama seem to be whining and diving a lot.

  3. Panama are dire. 4-0 40 min…England are not creative at all but don’t need to be.

  4. As predicted by UA, England are not only winning 3-0 or 4-0 over Panama but have ran riot in the game by taking as 5-0 lead in the game at the end of the first half.

  5. Shearer actually said something reasonable!! I paraphrase…after Lingaard got whacked by the elbow, he should be taken off to be evaluated by an independent authority and England should not be penalised…they should be allowed a temporary substitute…would encourage proper diagnoses of concussions.

  6. The hypocrisy of these commentators is truly staggering. It’s all fun and games saying that Arsenal “don’t like it up ’em”, yet when teams do it to England suddenly it’s disgusting behaviour and makes them lose respect for the Panama players.

  7. In the latest English County And one day Cricket matches, I have seen two instances where a special concussion substitute has been brought on. They have been able to take full part in the match, batting, bowling and fielding as opposed to the normal ‘twelfth man’ who is only allowed to field.

    Definitely an improvement over football.

  8. To me, Lingard getting elbowed down in the box should have been a penalty to England. But the Egyptian referee not giving it and not viewing the incident on the VAR baffled me. Though the England players did not protest to the match referee to view the incident on the VAR which I have seen happening in this World Cup by the affected opposition team that has often led to the referee changing his earlier decision but in few cases stand by it when the VAR proved his decision was correct. Or was there a foul by England before Lingard was elbowed down that I’ve missed?

    Nevertheless, I think the match officiating officials in this World Cup should endeavour to avoid all ambiguous decision making and always consult the VAR on incident they aren’t very sure of or on protest by one of the 2 teams that felt they should be awarded a penalty for a serious foul in the box. And when the ball is contested by the opposition team to be out of play for a throw in, corner kick & goal kick. And a strong protest by one of the 2 teams for a dangerous play/tackle and a foul not seen or ignored by the referee/lineman. And on protest for wrong flagging by the linesman. Hmmm.

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