The long, winding road that was the group phase at the 2014 FIFA World Cup has come to a close. There was laughter, tears, more tears, injuries (imagined and otherwise), and goals everywhere. Oh, and someone got bit, which you probably haven’t heard about yet.
Here is a quick overview of some of the good, the bad, and downright stupid things about the World Cup so far:
Goals, goals, goals
Also, after the group phase, 136 goals have been scored, or a 2.83 goals-per-game average. This is the highest since 1970 (2.96). If this average holds up or increases — a strong possibility considering the attacking disposition of the majority of the Round of 16 sides — the 2014 World Cup will see the most goals in tournament history.
Neymar. Messi. Müller. All major stars, and all three are tied for the scoring lead, with four goals each. We’re also seeing some great performances from Dutch teammates Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben, French star Karim Benzema, Colombian midfielder James Rodriguez, and Mexican keeper Guillermo Ochoa.
South American sides traditionally do well in tournaments held on the continent, and it’s been no different here. Five of the six sides from CONMEBOL are through to the Round of 16 (Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Uruguay), with only Ecuador missing out on a spot.
The bite heard ‘round the world
Nothing comes close to this. And you’ve heard about it for two days already. When Uruguay’s Luis Suarez took a bite out of Italian defender Giorgio Chiellini, he took the focus off of what was a great tournament, and turned it into a sideshow.
Big teams out
Despite the exciting start to the World Cup, it still stings to see Spain’s title defence end so early, and it’ll be disappointing to watch a knockout round without the likes of Italy, Portugal, or England. Though, to be fair, more than a few will disagree with that statement.
Seriously, someone got bit
It was really a promo for Luis Suarez's new children's game. pic.twitter.com/w6JJddj5zx— Pierre The Pelican (@PelicanPierre) June 24, 2014
Pitbull emerges from Giant Ball, party unwillingly brought
Do you remember the time Pitbull emerged from a Giant Ball and was surrounded by salad while he wore pants that were too tight and J-Lo was there and almost fell? No? Good. Sorry to hear about the doves, though.
Obama does not play for England
He may be a fan of the U.S. team, but U.S. President Barack Obama is more of a basketball player. Not a centreback for England. Those coffee mugs are apparently flying off the shelves now, by the way.
FIFA gets to the bottom of Neymar’s underwear violation
That was the last underwear pun, we promise, from the bottom of our hearts. Ok, we lied.