Earlier in the week we brought you xCRO, our Expected Conditional Results Outcome Simulator. We took a look at where teams stand in CONMEBOL, and now we will do the same for CONCACAF. Obviously with many more games remaining, things are much less uncertain right now. Each team has only played 3 games, and all teams are within 3 points of each other.
Despite the small amount of data, we are prepared to make projections for which teams will ultimately reach Brazil 2014. Like CONMEBOL, we ran 2,500 simulations on the remaining matches in The Hex. Here are the results:
As is standard with most CONCACAF competitions, we view Mexico and the United States as the two favorites. Each of the teams wound up in the top 3 in over 80% of simulations. What this also means is that the probability of both teams qualifying for Brazil is about 2/3, while the probability that at least one of the two doesn’t wind up in the top 3 is 1/3. This means that there is not much margin for error among the other teams. As of right now, Costa Rica, Panama, and Honduras all are virtually equal in probability. Panama’s win over Honduras in March was massive.
4th Place Play-off
This spot is completely up in the air. With all of the teams bunched together, virtually anybody can end up in 3rd. No team has more than a 25% chance of winding up in 4th, so there is really not much else to say here at the moment. The most likely scenario would be one of Costa Rica, Panama, or Honduras ending up in this spot.
Only the teams that finish in 5th or 6th place will surely miss out on Brazil. Unfortunately for Jamaica, the odds are stacked against them. They got a huge draw to start the final round in the Azteca, and followed it with a hard fought draw against Panama. We might get a better idea of where they stand after two tough home matches against Mexico and the USA in early June. If they are able to get more than 2 points, it must be considered a huge success.
Other than USA and Mexico, there is a 99% chance that one of the other 4 teams wind up in the bottom 2. Things should certainly start to separate as time passes.
While it is very early in the process to take a look at these odds, the strong probability that Mexico and USA grab 2 of the 3 automatic qualifying spots cannot be ignored. We will update these predictions as games are played. Keep an eye on our Twitter @We_Global and here for all the updates.
Thanks for reading!