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WORLD CUP PLAY-OFFS: the Scottish balls-up scenario. It couldn't happen, could it?!


nate

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An entirely dispassionate, impartial desire to see the seeds further advantaged in evidence here, I'm sure.

If an unseeded side manages to overcome a seed away from home, they surely deserve at least the luck of a draw to determine where they play next.

Those wishing to have it otherwise are just being totally self serving and would voice no such viewpoint were we unseeded.

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Why don't they? They earned that right in the previous round.
What about the winners of the other semi? If it is the unseeded team who win, haven't they earned it even more by beating their semi opponents away from home?

My point is there is no completely fair answer. Hence the "luck of the draw" being the best - if not ideal - compromise.
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What about the winners of the other semi? If it is the unseeded team who win, haven't they earned it even more by beating their semi opponents away from home?

My point is there is no completely fair answer. Hence the "luck of the draw" being the best - if not ideal - compromise.

Not really, because they failed to earn a seeding in the first place, which is the whole reason they were away from home. The seedings weren't arbitrary or based on some long-term ranking, they were based directly on performance in this tournament.
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Not really, because they failed to earn a seeding in the first place, which is the whole reason they were away from home. The seedings weren't arbitrary or based on some long-term ranking, they were based directly on performance in this tournament.
So a slim goal difference or head to head advantage wins you a home semi *and* final? I don't think that's ridiculous, and I wouldn't complain about that if Scotland were to benefit from it... but I don't think it would be hugely fair.
It would feel a bit like England's all but 1 home games on their route to getting rumped by Italy in the Euros [insert Chiellini smug gif here].

Not sure if there's any precedent that supports or debunks the chosen system. I just feel this is the right balance of advantage for the seeds in the semi, followed by an "evening up" for the finals.

ETA: a better system - although logistically unfeasible - would be to let seeds who make it through to the final keep home advantage, unless they are drawn in the final Vs other seeds, in which case a blind draw would decide who is at home.







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I'm still a bit unsure of these kinds of ties being decided over one leg at a home ground, purely because the understanding's always been that, if you aren't doing two legs, then the tie takes place at a neutral ground out of fairness. Probably just old-fashioned thinking; I suppose it's a reward for the teams who did better in their groups but, then again, some teams had harder groups so it's not a level field...meh.

Nobody's going to care if these are more exciting games than the play-offs usually are, and the draw hasn't worked out kindly for FIFA, so there's nothing nefarious about it. I'm probably the only person who gives a shit.

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3 hours ago, Donathan said:

The American sports leagues manage it with their playoffs every year.

American sports know exactly where they are going way in advance. Not 4 days notice. And away fans travelling for sports is not popular at all.

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7 hours ago, RobbieD said:

American sports know exactly where they are going way in advance. Not 4 days notice. And away fans travelling for sports is not popular at all.

Not remotely true at all. Read up on how the NFL playoffs work. They’re played on four consecutive weekends in January/February and in each case, the highest surviving seeds play at home to the lowest surviving seeds. 

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24 minutes ago, Donathan said:

Not remotely true at all. Read up on how the NFL playoffs work. They’re played on four consecutive weekends in January/February and in each case, the highest surviving seeds play at home to the lowest surviving seeds. 

Plus the NFL regularly flexes games from Sunday to Saturday during the last few weeks of the season. It did so this week for a game taking place the week before Christmas.

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8 minutes ago, craigkillie said:


But they weren't playing away from home in the first place through sheer bad luck, they were playing away from home because they didn't perform well enough in the first round to earn a seeding.

Yes, for which they'd already been 'punished' by virtue of having to play the semi final away from home.  I don't see it as intrinsically fair to have that penalty enshrined for the duration of the play-offs.  I'm pretty sure there would also be no bleating about it on here were we unseeded.

As others have said, one off matches at non neutral venues feel a bit unfair anyway.  To require the unseeded side to definitely play away from home twice strikes me as harsher than is necessary.

Edited by Monkey Tennis
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9 minutes ago, immcinto said:

Home advantage in final should have gone to the team with the better result in the semifinal

How on earth would you decide what is a "better" result? Goals scored? Away goals? 

Having that as an incentive could dramatically impact on a result. Say we were winning 1-0 in the 87th minute and we hear Wales are winning 2-1. Instead of doing the right thing and trying to protect our lead, we might go all out for another goal. By doing so, we leave ourselves exposed at the back and end up conceding a goal, that otherwise wouldn't have happened.

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10 hours ago, Gordopolis said:

ETA: a better system - although logistically unfeasible - would be to let seeds who make it through to the final keep home advantage, unless they are drawn in the final Vs other seeds, in which case a blind draw would decide who is at home.

That's what I said (kind of ;) )

12 hours ago, Lurkst said:

Tend to agree, the final permutations should be:-

Wales v Scotland/Ukraine 

Scotland v Austria 

Austria v Ukraine 

If the play off finals have to be one leg then they should really be played at a neutral venue.

I noticed on FIFA's draw programme on Friday that the inter confederation play-off finals are one off games in Qatar, in June 🥵

 

Edited by Lurkst
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14 minutes ago, Lurkst said:

That's what I said (kind of ;) )

If the play off finals have to be one leg then they should really be played at a neutral venue.

I noticed on FIFA's draw programme on Friday that the inter confederation play-off finals are one off games in Qatar, in June 🥵

 

I've always felt they should scrap the whole playoffs thing and instead have a preliminary round of the world cup itself

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