3 Nations Primed For Devastatingly Poor World Cups

Since the turn of the 21st century, it’s happened without fail: every World Cup, three nations that began the tournament ranked in FIFA’s top 20 have been unceremoniously dumped from the competition at the group stage. In fact, in two of the four World Cups this century, three of the world’s top 10 ranked sides have capitulated before the knockout rounds. 

Here’s a rundown of the three highest ranked sides to fall at the first hurdle in the last four tournaments:


Which Player Is The Best At Scoring Four Goals In A Game?

Three footballers scored pokers (four goals in one match) this weekend in Europe's major leagues: Mohamed Salah for Liverpool, Cristiano Ronaldo for Real Madrid and Mauro Icardi for Inter Milan. You have to be an astoundingly good footballer to score four in a match in one of Europe top five leagues, but who was the most astoundingly good at being astoundingly good.

Who scored four goals in one match with the most flair, the most panache? Who won the poker hand, as it were? Ante up, let's figure it out.

Stadium X Offers The Best Fan Experience In The World

During a recent editorial meeting, we here at The18 came to the distressing conclusion that there is no one stadium that provides the perfect fan experience. Being Americans and therefore experts on amusing the masses to the point of overload, we made up our own stadium that has all the amenities that come together to create the perfect fan experience. Welcome to Stadium X, where fans have a good and cool time thanks to the following things:

A Big Ol' Pool Bar

Spanish Announcers Are Better At Football Than English Announcers And You Won’t Convince Me Otherwise

Football is a sport of moments, of building up to a climax and exploding with joy, relief, anger or sadness. It is in these moments that football announcers show their true worth. But in the debate of English vs. Spanish football announcers we just made up, there is no doubt in my mind who wins. 

The Next USMNT Coach Absolutely Does Not Need To Be American

In a wide-ranging interview recently, Landon Donovan spoke of coming out of retirement for a second time, opting to join Liga MX, Mexico-U.S. politics and the state of U.S. Soccer. Donovan, perhaps the greatest American player ever produced, knows as well as anyone what he’s talking about when he discusses the state of U.S. Soccer, but he’s dead wrong in saying the next USMNT coach needs to be an American. 

Why I Really Want To Go To The Leyton Orient Match Next Week And What Other Clubs Could Learn From Them

Let’s just get this out of the way. I like donuts. Also doughnuts. Even donut holes. So when I heard about the Leyton Orient donut, I immediately became a fan.

There are many reasons to attend a football match: the camaraderie of the fans, feeling the roar of the crowd, the thrill of seeing top athletes in person and, of course, watching your team lose. But to me one of the key draws is having an excuse to eat food that’s really bad for you. 

Four World-Beating Teams That Could’ve Been If Not For Transfers

With three months still remaining in Europe’s major leagues, four of the five most-watched competitions are pretty much already decided. In Germany, Bayern Munich have ostensibly been crowned champions with an 18-point lead over their nearest rivals. In England and France, it would be shocking to see Manchester City and PSG throw away their respective 13-point and 11-point advantages. Spain is tighter, but Barcelona comfortably sit nine points clear of Atletico Madrid.

Which Footballer Would Make The Best Music Video?

Every footballer music video is bad. This makes sense. Footballers are not musicians, nor are they dancers. But still, the footballer music videos could be better. There is room for improvement. 

We think part of this is down to which footballers are making music videos and which footballers are not. No one cares what Jese has to say, no offense to Jese. However, these four footballers (well, one is a coach) would make excellent music videos, we think.

Roberto Firmino