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Put Your Tracksuit Back on Walcott

Phew! Theo Walcott was five minutes away from starting for England in their next match. If Sweden hadn’t scored in the 85th minute to beat Paraguay 1-0, the result of Tuesday’s England v Sweden match would have been meaningless for England, and Walcott would have been certain to play.

Now both England and Sweden can tie on Tuesday. If so, both teams will go through and England will be top of the group.

But, think about this scenario:

Before England play their match against Sweden on Tuesday, they’ll know the result of the Germany against Ecuador game from earlier that day. Therefore, both England and Sweden will know what it’ll take to play either the host country or Ecuador in the next round.

So if Ecuador end up in first place in Group A, will England lose on purpose to ensure that they won’t have to play Germany in the next round, and play Ecuador instead? What do you think??

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About Christopher Harris

Founder and publisher of World Soccer Talk, Christopher Harris is the managing editor of the site. He has been interviewed by The New York Times, The Guardian and several other publications. Plus he has made appearances on NPR, BBC World, CBC, BBC Five Live, talkSPORT and beIN SPORT. Harris, who has lived in Florida since 1984, has supported Swansea City since 1979. He's also an expert on soccer in South Florida, and got engaged during half-time of a MLS game. Harris launched EPL Talk in 2005, which was rebranded as World Soccer Talk in 2013.
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2 Responses to Put Your Tracksuit Back on Walcott

  1. Yannick says:

    I think both will be going for the win regardless of the outcome of the Germany vs Ecuador match.

  2. TheScout says:

    Ecuador are no pushover so I think both teams will go for the win and try to maintain a postive spirit. There’s a bit of rivalry between England and Sweden as they’ve been matched up at the last few tournaments so no one will want to concede anything. The most likely result is a draw which would leave England at the top of the group.

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