Here's your World Cup "football" pool
Everybody into the pool. There are 16 teams left in the World Cup soccer tourney, and here's your chance to predict the winners. Enter the pool on this blog. It's free. If you're the winner here, we'll get together for a couple of drinks of one's choice at a suitable location here in Portland after the results are official, and (although it would be wrong to gamble for an item of value) I might even be inclined to buy for the winner.
There are 16 games in the pool: eight this weekend through Tuesday; four quarterfinals next Friday and Saturday; one semi-final on the Fourth of July and another on the 5th; a game for third place on July 8; and the big finale on the 9th.
To play, check out the official brackets at the FIFA site here, or on my Excel spreadsheet here. Note that each remaining match has a number assigned to it (49 to 64). Send your picks for each game, plus the four tiebreakers, to me electronically. One way to do so would be by leaving your choices in a comment to this post. You could also e-mail me a filled-in version of the Excel spreadsheet linked to above. Or e-mail your selections to me any old way. On your entry form, please use the official match number for each match, and don't forget the four tiebreakers.
Scoring will be as follows:
One point for every correct selection in the round of 16 (49 to 56).
Two points for every correct selection in the quarterfinal round (57 to 60).
Three points for every correct selection in the semi-finals (61 and 62).
Two points for the correct selection in the third-place match (63).
Five points for the correct selection in the final match (64).
The tiebreakers will be consulted only in the case of a tie in scoring. They will be applied in numerical order, with the earliest of the four breaking the tie. They are:
1. Total number of goals (not including goals in penalty shoot-outs) scored in Match 64.
2. Goals (not including goals in penalty shoot-outs) scored by winning side in Match 64.
3. Goals (not including goals in penalty shoot-outs) scored by losing side in Match 64.
4. Total number of goals (not including goals in penalty shoot-outs) scored, all 16 matches.
Here are the matchups, in a narrative form. If you like, you can cut and paste this to get your entry together:
Quarterfinals (2 points each)
57. Winner of Germany-Sweden vs. winner of Argentina-Mexico. Winner: __________
58. Winner of Italy-Australia vs. winner of Switzerland-Ukraine. Winner: __________
59. Winner of England-Ecuador vs. winner of Portugal-Netherlands. Winner: __________
60. Winner of Brazil-Ghana vs. winner of Spain-France. Winner: __________
Semi-finals (3 points each)
61. Winner of match 57 vs. winner of match 58. Winner: __________
62. Winner of match 59 vs. winner of match 60. Winner: __________
Third place match (2 points)
63. Loser of match 61 vs. loser of match 62. Winner: __________
Championship match (5 points)
64. Winner of match 61 vs. winner of match 62. Winner: __________
Entries must be posted by kickoff of the first game tomorrow -- 8 a.m. PDT! Hope to hear from you this afternoon and evening. Good luck, everybody!