*Spoiler alert* England don’t win it.
The weird and wonderful world of the FIFA world rankings baffles us all.
Clearly decided by someone who has never actually watched international football, some of the rankings are questionable to say the least (Switzerland higher than Spain and France).
This summer’s tournament is tougher to predict than your usual world cup, with subplots all over the place.
Will Germany retain their crown? Is Lionel Messi finally about to get his hands on the World Cup? Can Gareth Southgate lead England to victory?
Okay, we definitely know that last one isn’t happening…
So, with that said, lets take a gander at the spreadsheet equivalent of a crystal ball and head over to the world rankings.
Here is the 2018 World Cup decided entirely by the world rankings
1 Uruguay (17)
2 Egypt (46)
3 Russia (66)
4 Saudi Arabia (70)
No major shocks in this one.
Uruguay top the group, presumably after Luis Suarez goes on a spree of biting the opposition.
Hosts Russia won’t be too pleased as they finish third behind the unstoppable force of Egypt and Mohamed Elnen… Salah.
Saudi Arabia unsurprisingly finish rock-bottom.
1 Portgual (4)
2 Spain (8)
3 Iran (36)
4 Morocco (42)
Portugal and Cristiano Ronaldo finish top ahead of Spain, in what wouldn’t be the most surprising of outcomes.
Maybe these world rankings aren’t that bad after all?
Iran pip Morocco to third place in the group, as Marouane Chamakh posters are aggressively ripped of every bedroom wall in Morocco.
1 France (7)
2 Peru (11)
3 Denmark (12)
4 Australia (40)
France get off to a good start in their quest to recover from Euro 2016 final heartbreak, after they top Group C.
Peru finish in 2nd place, toppling a Denmark side brimming with talent such as Christian Eriksen and Nicklas Bendtner… actually it’s just Christian Eriksen, really.
Tim Cahill bows out of his final World Cup in disappointing fashion, as the ‘Socceroos’ finish bottom of the pile.
1 Argentina (5)
2 Croatia (18)
3 Iceland (22)
4 Nigeria (47)
Lionel Messi makes a good start in his quest for World Cup glory, as Argentina top the group.
Croatia finish second, with England’s nemesis from Euro 2016, Iceland, failing to make it out of the group, what a result.
Alex Iwobi frustrates an entire nation as his lack of composure in front of goal means Nigeria slump to 4th. I’m sure their kit goes down really well though.
1 Brazil (2)
2 Switzerland (6)
3 Costa Rica (25)
4 Serbia (35)
Brazil finish top of Group E and look good value for their tag of joint favourites for the tournament.
Granit Xhaka clatters into everyone as Switzerland finish 2nd.
Costa Rica beat Serbia to 3rd in the group, not that it means anything at all though.
1 Germany (1)
2 Mexico (15)
3 Sweden (23)
4 Korea (61)
Germany begin their defence of the World Cup in typically supreme fashion, topping the group.
Mexico finish 2nd as they continue their efforts to be the tournament’s dark horses.
Sweden clearly miss Zlatan Ibrahimovic as they are left with Korea to battle it out for 3rd and 4th place.
1 Belgium (3)
2 England (13)
3 Tunisia (14)
4 Panama (55)
The wizardry of Kevin De Bruyne and Eden Hazard earns Belgium 1st place in the group.
Gareth Southgate’s men just about scrape 2nd place, England are only one ranking higher than Tunisia?
Panama shock nobody as they finish rock bottom.
1 Poland (10)
2 Colombia (16)
3 Senegal (28)
4 Japan (60)
Poland finish ahead of Colombia who get 2nd place.
Sadio Mane and Senegal finish a respectable third with Japan book-ending the group.
Absolute waste of a group in all fairness.
Russia, Denmark and Sweden are the only notable casualties from the group stages, if we are to believe the world rankings
Round of 16
Spain (8) v Uruguay (17) – Spain win
Spain come a step closer to recovering from their World Cup humiliation in 2014, overcoming Uruguay in the first round of 16 clash.
Portugal (4) v Egypt (46) – Portugal win
Portugal overcome Egypt in their tie, as Salah’s World Cup fairy-tale comes to an end.
France (7) v Croatia (18) – France win
France see off Croatia to progress to the quarter-finals.
Argentina (5) v Peru (11) – Argentina win
Argentina deal with Peru in their all South American clash.
Brazil (2) v Mexio (15) – Brazil win
Brazil continue their efforts for World Cup redemption as they beat Mexico in another all South American match up.
Germany (1) v Switzerland (6) – Germany win
Joachim Low’s side see off Switzerland in their clash.
Belgium (3) v Colombia (16) – Belgium win
Belgium make light work of Colombia as they hope to finally shake off their tag of perennial tournament failures.
England (13) v Poland (10) – Poland win
Alas, this where the journey ends for Southgate’s side.
We made a good fist of it, but in the end, Robert Lewandowski and Poland were too much for the likes of Phil Jones and Danny Welbeck.
No real shocks in this round of fixtures, apart from England bouncing out… is that really a shock though?
Spain (8) v France (7) – France win
Didier Deschamps’ men go marching on to the semi-finals after overcoming Spain.
What a quarter-final this would be though.
Portugal (4) v Argentina (5) – Portugal win
This is a bit of an awkward one… Ronaldo gets the better of Messi as Portugal knockout Argentina.
I hope the game ends in really dramatic style and Ronaldo celebrates wildly in Messi’s face.
Brazil (2) v Belgium (3) – Brazil win
The world’s second best team knock out the third best team in what would be an exciting match-up.
I still don’t fully understand how Belgium are ranked 3rd?
Germany (1) v Poland (10) – Germany win
Germany again doing what they do best, what an absolute force.
This one isn’t exactly a glamour tie, but lets all just be thankful that it isn’t England on the end of a thumping from Germany.
After some absolutely mammoth fixtures, we are left with a mouthwatering last four
France (7) v Brazil (2) – Brazil win
In the first of two exciting semi-finals, Brazil overcome France.
Presumably Deschamps gets the sack and Arsene Wenger takes over after this?
Portugal (4) v Germany (1) – Germany win
Germany end Portugal’s hopes of back-to-back Euro and World Cup wins.
According to the world rankings, this summer’s final will be a repeat of the memorable 2014 semi-final
Brazil (2) v Germany (1) – Germany win
And there we have it, Germany are the winners, hardly surprising though really.
According to the rankings, Joachim Löw’s side will lump further humiliation on Brazil, this after their 7-1 spanking in the semi-finals back in 2014.
Hopefully the final leaves us with some more iconic moments, just as that infamous match in Brazil did.
A whole World cup being decided on the rankings doesn’t exactly throw up any major shocks.
It does however mean that the best always play the best and isn’t that what we really want?
Maybe the world rankings aren’t as bats**t crazy as we all think?