The Women's World Cup started in Canada a week ago, and we have seen some great football so far.
With the second round of group fixtures underway, we will look ahead to the final round of games, and look to see what each team needs to do in order to qualify. Today, we look at Groups A, B and C. Below are the current standings for each group (listed as: team; goal difference; points):
1. CAN; +1; 4pts
2. CHN; 0; 3pts
3. NED; 0; 3pts
4. NZL; -1; 1pt
1. GER; +10; 4pts
2. NOR; +4; 4pts
3. THA; -3; 3pts
4. CIV; -11; 0pts
1. JPN; +2; 6pts
2. SUI; +8; 3pts
3. CAM; +5; 3pts
4. ECU; -15; 0pts
Below are the outcomes from all nine possibilities for each of our groups. We have also shown the probability of each result, converted from bookmakers' odds.
Applying this to all three groups gives us the following chances of qualification:
CAN - 87.5%
CHN - 74.1%
NED - 20.0%
NZL - 18.4%
NOR - 99.9%
GER - 97.0%
THA - 3.1%
CIV - zero
JPN - certain
SUI - 82.9%
CAM - 17.1%
ECU - zero
Also, it should be noted that whilst Ivory Coast and Ecuador are listed as having "zero" chance of progressing, they could still quality as a third-placed team. Although with their horrific goal differences, it is extremely unlikely they will progress.
We can see that Group A appears to be the most open, whilst Group B is a lot less close than its table suggests. And Group C will be entirely decided by the result of the Switzerland - Cameroon fixture, making that one to watch.
Long-term vs short-term odds
As we did with the Men's World Cup last year, we can compare our probabilities with the probabilities suggested by the bookmakers' odds for teams finishing in the top two of their group:
For Group C we shouldn't see a big difference, given that who qualifies out of Switzerland and Cameroon is entirely dependent on one match. However, there is a slight difference, which is surprising.
Group A is where we see the biggest discrepancy, as New Zealand have no odds listed, leading us to assume that the bookies don't think they can progress. However, we have seen that they have a decent chance of progressing (higher, indeed, than Cameroon). The result of this is that we can say that the odds for the other three teams are bad value for money.
Even with a very limited number of odds, we are able to judge long-term bookies' odds by using their short-term odds as a measure.
But the most important aspect is that ahead of the final round of games, we can put the chances of each team into perspective.
Next time we will go through the chances of the teams in Groups D-F!
bwin - odds for upcoming matches and top-two finishes.