E&T World Cup blog: day five, Ivory Coast vs Portugal

So it’s four from four for Dr Ian McHale, our resident stats man: Dr Ian has successfully predicted the results of all four games. Stevenage FC goalkeeper Chris Day isn’t doing half bad either – he’s the only one to correctly predict the actual score, something he’s now done twice: 1-1 South Africa v Mexico and now yesterday’s 2-0 win for Holland over Denmark. As the World Cup juggernaut rolls on, what does the future hold for our predicting panel?

Today we turn our beady predictive eye to Ivory Coast v Portugal. This game will, naturally, be all about Ronaldo and his smashing new haircut, which makes him look about 12, although Didier Drogba turning up with his arm in a cast should give the game a little extra spice.

We like the fact that the cast had to be officially inspected, according to FIFA, who said, “The referee of the match Jorge Larrionda has okayed the cast which Didier Drogba will use to play. The cast has been seen by the Portuguese delegation at yesterday’s match co-ordination meeting.”

We imagine a truculent Drogba sitting on a plastic chair in a doctor’s ante-rooom while the Portugese delegation in white lab coats poke and prod at his arm with short wooden sticks – possibly also trying to give Didier an Indian burn – before giving the hovering FIFA official a curt nod of approval.

I suppose it wouldn’t do to have Drogba turn up with a cast like those sported by clumsy schoolchildren, signed by all his team mates and covered in doodles and rude drawings.

Anyway, here are today’s predictions from our panel:

  • Dr Ian McHale, a Senior Lecturer in Statistics at the University of Salford: “A draw.”
  • David Williams, head of PR at Ladbrokes: “An Ivory Coast win”.
  • Chris Day, goalkeeper for Stevenage FC: “2-1 to Portugal″.
  • Laura Daligan, ‘psychic, artist and pin-up’: “Hmmm, another interesting game. I feel Ivory Coast will just win. There seems to be some fancy or possibly questionable footwork from the Portugese team.”
So there we have it: one draw, two wins for Ivory Coast and one for Portugal. At least one of these predictions has to be right! Will Dr Ian give himself a high five? Will Chris Day keep up his impressive scoring? Will Laura’s prediction of questionable footwork trip up the Portugese? Has the Ladbrokes’ high-tech stats centre picked out the right result? Watch and see. Why not tell us what you think by adding a comment below?
Remember: this is just for fun and all predictions are for entertainment only. Any mortgages lost or other sums squandered based on the information supplied are your own responsibility! And yes, I will keep mentioning this every day. I’ve told you repeatedly and I’m a man of my word.
Incidentally, if you want to read our magazine feature on the science of football prediction, I can heartily recommend it. If you’re not much of a reader, wear your eyeballs out on the accompanying football predictions video. Ho yus, we’ve got it going on with this piece.

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