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The Mathematics Thread


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Well the Euros kicked off last night and just felt it would be handy to have a thread to analyse each group results and keep an eye on what may be required (should we finish third) to have one of the better third place record to see us through. No I am not being negative but just looking at all eventualities and possibilities.

Do we want every group to see two teams run away with the group leaving the bottom two teams ending up on a point each? What will be enough for best placed third team? Three points? Four points?

Discuss here....

 

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From looking at some of the odds for the different teams it looks as if there is a clear weakest 4th team in 4 of the groups - Finland, North Macedonia, Slovakia and Hungary. If those teams are indeed the worst in their groups and fail to take points off the third placed teams then those groups could be the most likely to have thrid placed qualifiers.

The remaining groups are A and D where Wales and Scotland look relatively the strongest of the likely 4th-strongest teams.

Meaning (according to odds) it looks as if it could be most likely that Groups B, C, E and F have a third placed team with 3+ points if we assume they beat the 4th placed team, and/or pick up points against higher teams. Whereas in our group and Wales' group, it's maybe more likely that the 3rd and 4th teams are more likely to be evenly matched and so maybe more likely to draw (even a couple of times) but could mean falling behind any 3rd place team that gets a win...

Having said all that, I think geography could yet have a say, and I could yet imagine Finland nicking points off Russia or even Belgium in St Petersburg, or Denmark in Copenhagen. And Hungary could nick points off Portugal or even France, at home in Budapest.

Indeed from Scotland's point of view, those would be favourable outcomes if Finland and Hungary take points off (say) Russia and Portugal, so ideally they all end up with one point (assuming they lose to the group winners and runners up)

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Four points with  a slightly negative goal difference should be enough.

2016 third pace qualifiers Slovakia 4 pts, NI 3 pts GD 0, Ireland 4pts, Portugal ( 🙄)  Non qualifiers Albania and Turkey both with 3pts GD -2.

 

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Going much further back to when WC was 24 teams ( same qualifying rules) 

1994

Argentina, 6 points, Belgium 6 points, Ireland 4 points GD 0, USA, hosts 4 points GD 0

Two non qualifiers Russia 3 points GD 1, South Korea 2 points

1990 Two points for win red changing to 3 points for win

Argentina 3 points (4) GD 1, Colombia 3 (4)  points GD 1 Uruguay 3 (4) points GD -1, F***Ing last minute goal against Korea to effectively knock us out. Netherlands 3 (3) points GD 0

Non qualifiers Austria 2 points (3) GD -1 , Scotland 2 points GD -1 (3)

Beat Czechs and one other point should do it

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12 minutes ago, Third Lanark said:

What do we want England to do tomorrow? Draw - or a win? Which is best for us?

For me best result would be Croatia win. If that happens they may already have won the group by the time we come to play them in the last game and puts great pressure on England to deliver against us.

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47 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

For me best result would be Croatia win. If that happens they may already have won the group by the time we come to play them in the last game and puts great pressure on England to deliver against us.

Yeah I would agree. Maybe. It would be interesting to see how England start against us if we have 3 points and they have 0. It might actually make them more determined to beat us though so I don’t know. 

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6 hours ago, exile said:

From looking at some of the odds for the different teams it looks as if there is a clear weakest 4th team in 4 of the groups - Finland, North Macedonia, Slovakia and Hungary. If those teams are indeed the worst in their groups and fail to take points off the third placed teams then those groups could be the most likely to have thrid placed qualifiers.

The remaining groups are A and D where Wales and Scotland look relatively the strongest of the likely 4th-strongest teams.

Meaning (according to odds) it looks as if it could be most likely that Groups B, C, E and F have a third placed team with 3+ points if we assume they beat the 4th placed team, and/or pick up points against higher teams. Whereas in our group and Wales' group, it's maybe more likely that the 3rd and 4th teams are more likely to be evenly matched and so maybe more likely to draw (even a couple of times) but could mean falling behind any 3rd place team that gets a win...

Having said all that, I think geography could yet have a say, and I could yet imagine Finland nicking points off Russia or even Belgium in St Petersburg, or Denmark in Copenhagen. And Hungary could nick points off Portugal or even France, at home in Budapest.

Indeed from Scotland's point of view, those would be favourable outcomes if Finland and Hungary take points off (say) Russia and Portugal, so ideally they all end up with one point (assuming they lose to the group winners and runners up)

What makes you think Scotland are any better than those 4 teams? Have you forgotten our recent performances against Israel?

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1 hour ago, Orraloon said:

What makes you think Scotland are any better than those 4 teams? Have you forgotten our recent performances against Israel?

I never said my opinion of those teams relative to Scotland. It's about teams relative to the rest of their groups.

As I said, according to the odds I'd seen, those teams are earmarked as weakest in their group. I know odds isn't wholly reliable but it presumably takes account of who each team is up against. So for example Hungary are probably perceived as outsiders because of the 3 other teams in their group who are surely stronger than those in our group. We are - according to rankings - closer to Czech Republic than Hungary are to Portugal for example.

But in any case, as I already said in the same post, I don't think it's as simple as that, I already said I think Finland and Hungary could well do better than predicted. Finland have already won and let's see what Hungary can do with home advantage.

Edited by exile
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The whole context of the thread is based on 'what would suit us, if we were to finish third'

If we were to finish third there must be six teams ending up 'below' us in 4th, whoever they may be

If we think we're too shite to come third there is no need to worry about this thread 😉

Edited by exile
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I think it’s been a good start for Scotland so far in terms of the 3rd place safety net but obviously early days. I can see the three teams in the Belgium group finishing with 3 points and 3rd place having a poor goal difference. If wales and turkey draw in the other group I can’t see 3rd place getting more than 2 points.

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9 hours ago, exile said:

The whole context of the thread is based on 'what would suit us, if we were to finish third'

If we were to finish third there must be six teams ending up 'below' us in 4th, whoever they may be

If we think we're too shite to come third there is no need to worry about this thread 😉

Very true.

I started this thread as we all know come the final fixture there is a decent chance we will be fretting over what would be good enough to get us through in third. If you feel we are not good enough for us to finish third then this thread is one for you to blank.

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Good thing about being in group D is that we will already know the points target for a qualifying third place as 3 of the other groups ( A,B,C) would be completed. Could be, a shared draw with Croatia would put us both through.

Could just try and finish second and let others worry about third. 

Don't want to finish first as that would probably mean Portugal or Germany in the last 16 😃😄

Just as an aside for the final match, could Croatia not want to win for the very same reason? Second place gets second team in group E. Poland or Sweden probably, on paper easier match than the winners?

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35 minutes ago, Burj_Alba said:

Good thing about being in group D is that we will already know the points target for a qualifying third place as 3 of the other groups ( A,B,C) would be completed. Could be, a shared draw with Croatia would put us both through.

Could just try and finish second and let others worry about third. 

Don't want to finish first as that would probably mean Portugal or Germany in the last 16 😃😄

Just as an aside for the final match, could Croatia not want to win for the very same reason? Second place gets second team in group E. Poland or Sweden probably, on paper easier match than the winners?

I would take first place right now if it was offered. Would mean we could go to the last 16 match without traveling abroad. If that means playing a big team then so be it.

England would probably happily finish top of the group as they would be at Wembley for their last 16 match. 

I think the days of passing the ball about like Austria and West Germany in 1982 to ensure both teams going through are long gone although if Croatia let us win a week on Tuesday I’ll take it! 

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6 hours ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Very true.

I started this thread as we all know come the final fixture there is a decent chance we will be fretting over what would be good enough to get us through in third. If you feel we are not good enough for us to finish third then this thread is one for you to blank.

I don't have a problem with the thread. If we can't dream this weekend, before a ball is kicked, when can we?

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Posted (edited)
15 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Well Group C perhaps offering a glimpse of a weak third-placed side. Austria beating North Macedonia 3-1 earlier and Netherlands beating Ukraine 2-0 so far tonight.

I spoke too soon. From nowhere Ukraine have pulled level. Their first goal was superb. 2-2.

Edited by Caledonian Craig
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Well Group A it looks like Turkey are definitely out even if they win their last games. Italy, if they beat Switzerland tonight would leave the group with all teams playing twice and probably look like this:-

1st. Italy 6 pts

2nd. Wales 4 pts

3rd. Switzerland 1 pt

4th. Turkey 0 pts

Turkey play Switzerland in their last match and a draw would be a good result for us or a Turkey win. Switzerland would not be a good result for us.

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So Group A looks like it will look something like this after tonight's fixture:-

1st Italy 6 pts GD +5

2nd Wales 4 pts GD +2

3rd Switzerland 1 pt GD -2

4th Turkey 0 pts GD -5

The final fixture sees Italy play Wales with both teams guaranteed qualification (virtually). The other game sees Turkey play Switzerland with the best result for Scotland being a draw or a Turkey win which would leave us in with a shout of bettering that group's third place finisher. 

 

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By my estimation I am feeling optimistic that as many as three groups will have a strong possibility of a 3rd place team with 3 points. 

Group A will likely have Swiss on 4 points Group B Denmark or Russia on 3 as I see Belgium winning all three of their games so there's 1.

Group C Ukraine or Austria to have 3.

Group D - it's too hard for me to have an impartial view of what I think could happen. 

Group E - Too hard for me to call right now.

Group F - Germany I am picking to have 3 points, but a good rout of Hungary to help their GD.

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Caledonian Craig said:

So Group A looks like it will look something like this after tonight's fixture:-

1st Italy 6 pts GD +5

2nd Wales 4 pts GD +2

3rd Switzerland 1 pt GD -2

4th Turkey 0 pts GD -5

The final fixture sees Italy play Wales with both teams guaranteed qualification (virtually). The other game sees Turkey play Switzerland with the best result for Scotland being a draw or a Turkey win which would leave us in with a shout of bettering that group's third place finisher. 

 

A draw would be better I’d say as it would mean 3 points would definitely be enough to finish above Switzerland on the table of 3rd placed teams. Of course we’d need to beat to beat Croatia and the Czechs to take something tomorrow for us to finish 3rd with 3 points which seems a little unlikely. I think. My head hurts thinking about it. 

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1 minute ago, Texas Pete said:

A draw would be better I’d say as it would mean 3 points would definitely be enough to finish above Switzerland on the table of 3rd placed teams. Of course we’d need to beat to beat Croatia and the Czechs to take something tomorrow for us to finish 3rd with 3 points which seems a little unlikely. I think. My head hurts thinking about it. 

Yes a draw would be the ultimate result for Swi V Tur. I don't hold out much of Turkey getting a win as they have been very disappointing so far. Switzerland have a more solid look to them. As for Czechs V Croatia then if Czechs win its better they win big. It would leave our match V Croatia as winner takes third should we lose against England. A draw would still leave us in with the chance of pipping Croatia for third. A Croatia win really complicates things as apparently teams go through on head-to-heads which would leave each of us having beaten each other and then goal difference comes into play which we'd miss out on barring us having a big win against Croatia and a narrow loss against England.

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