FIFA World Cup: Predicting Every Round of 16 Winner

The 2018 FIFA World Cup has been a magnificent rollercoaster thus far and I don’t expect it to be any less outrageous in the knockout stage. Before I get further into this, let me just share the fact that I am not a huge soccer fanatic and I don’t follow the sport as close as I do others. Although, I do in fact absolutely love the World Cup and completely immerse myself into it when the spectacle arrives. There is no sporting event that can even compare to it. Witnessing the world come together the way it does for the World Cup is something no other sport can replicate. It’s also just really fun to watch, so that’s always nice.

Nonetheless, we’ve reached the knockout stage and it’s time to predict the Round of 16 matchups.

Uruguay vs Portugal – This one is simple really. One team has the worlds best player and the other doesn’t. Cristiano Ronaldo has been nothing short of sensational so far in this tournament and has given Portugal some serious momentum heading into the knockout stage. It’ll be close, but Portugal will pull this one out.

Winner: Portugal

France vs Argentina – A couple of the biggest Futbol countries battling it out in the Round of 16? Yes, please. Seriously this is a World Cup Final caliber match. Argentina may have struggled a bit in the group stage, but it’d be foolish to sleep on them. Is France the better team? Probably. Will they win? Chances are yes. Will I pick them? Nope.

Winner: Argentina

Brazil vs Mexico – This is a tough one. Mexico may not have ended the group stage on a high note, but they had a couple of pretty impressive wins. As for Brazil, well, they’re Brazil and they have some unfinished business to attend to. If I’m being honest, this game is a coin toss for me. I’m going to go with my gut feeling on this one.

Winner: Brazil

Belgium vs Japan – Admittedly, I’ve only watched Japan play one match in this years tournament, but that one match was one that they won and looked pretty impressive. As for Belgium, they’ve looked ridiculously good. All while going undefeated in the group stage. I’m going to go with the clear favorite in this one.

Winner: Belgium

Spain vs Russia – Russia’s victories against Saudi Arabia and Egypt were as dominant as they get, but they were also against the weakest competition in the entire tournament. Spain drew Portugal, defeated Iran and drew Morocco. Also, Spain is on an unbeaten streak of 23 games in international play. A much more impressive resume if you ask me.

Winner: Spain

Croatia vs Denmark – Croatia is arguably the hottest team in the entire tournament and I’d be silly to not ride with them…Right?

Winner: Croatia

Sweden vs Switzerland – Here sits another toss up for me. I’ll go with the one with no losses.

Winner: Switzerland

Colombia vs England – This is the match I’m most excited for. Why? In each World Cup, I root hard for Colombia (when the U.S. is out of course) and they’ve looked fantastic since their little stumble against Japan. The thing is, England has looked ridiculous as well. I’m a bit nervous, to say the least. Viva Colombia.

Winner: Colombia

This Round of 16 has so many great matches, I’d highly recommend watching as many as you can. I know I will.

Photo Credit HERE

Remembering The Magic of Rosenblatt Stadium

Rosenblatt….this stadium defined my summers growing up. Long days sitting on the side of the hill baking in the sun with my grandpa getting it down to a science…”Games start at 7 we better get over there at 3 if we want good seats.” So we sat and burned and later my grandpa and I added my buddy Jeff Franks to our tradition. On the side of that hill I learned about baseball and about life. I stepped inside those gates a mad dash to the front row of the right field bleachers. This is where I would dream.
Sitting there I watched legends take form I would dream of being on that field of feeling the dirt. I aspired to be something more than just a kid in the stands. I couldn’t describe it then but now the feeling was simply electric. Nothing beats the sound of the vendors on 13th st lined as far as the eye can see. Nothing beats the sound of the old bats knowing when LSU came to town there were going to be some balls you’d never see again.

This was the College World Series this stadium this atmosphere. You’ll look at these pictures and unless you walked those rows or that concourse you won’t know what magic awaited you. In those pictures you won’t see the memories made with a father, a friend, a girlfriend, a wife, or a grandpa who went out of his way to make the day the best he could.

See what those pictures miss is the love of the players, the fans, the staff. Rosenblatt was bigger than baseball and in many ways bigger than the CWS. Maybe I’m just being bias but to me this was pure and for anyone who stepped foot inside it meant something different. When they tore down that old stadium they took a lot of memories with it. For me they took my childhood and some dreams. They took the basket of fries and waffle cones. Buried in the debris was sun burns, water bottles, rain delays, crowd surfing and souvenirs long-lost.
I still go to the College World Series and every year when someone starts the wave or tries a left field vs right field chant it doesn’t seem to hold the same spark or same energy. The night the lights went out on Rosenblatt the College World Series lost its soul.
Not a single trip to Omaha goes by without the memory of a day spent on that hill. Not a single summer day goes by without the memory of that concourse, the smell of sunblock and French fries. Not a single second goes by without the memory of those dreams. That was Rosenblatt.
– Matt Corum (Guest Writer)