Best Countries Per Capita/Wealth Before 2018 World Cup

Messages
28
Likes
1
Location
Wisconsin
Supports
neutral?
Thread starter #1
http://internationalsports.nfshost.com/index.php/home/load_sports/5/2018

This is a more accurate method of judging skill of countries in any particular sport. Peru was leading for most of this year, Brazil narrowly leads them right now.

1. Brazil
2. Peru
3. Uruguay
4. Portugal
5. Croatia
6. Spain
7. Chile
8. Iceland
9. Switzerland

*alternative flags often used
*non-FIFA countries and years 1950-2017 under construction, should be fixed by end of 2018
*1950-2017 are still mostly accurate except when a new country first joins the rankings
 
Messages
28
Likes
1
Location
Wisconsin
Supports
neutral?
Thread starter #5
I don't understand the methodology of the ranking at all.
It is pretty simple. Each country has an "economic determinant" that is based upon population amount and gdp (this is updated each decade going back to 1840). Each game countries with a significantly lower economic determinant will receive a curved handicap that alters the score (usually slightly). After that a slightly altered Elo rating calculation is made. This gives a pretty realistic comparison of a country's true ability in most cases.

Probably because population isn't considered.
It is considered, but wealth has greater weight.

Updated rankings after yesterday's matches:

1. Brazil
2. Peru
3. Uruguay
4. Portugal
5. Croatia
6. Belgium
7. Spain
8. Chile
9. Iceland
 

St. Juste

Active Member
Messages
807
Likes
79
Location
Barra da Tijuca
Supports
St. Mirren
#7
It is pretty simple. Each country has an "economic determinant" that is based upon population amount and gdp (this is updated each decade going back to 1840). Each game countries with a significantly lower economic determinant will receive a curved handicap that alters the score (usually slightly). After that a slightly altered Elo rating calculation is made. This gives a pretty realistic comparison of a country's true ability in most cases.

It is considered, but wealth has greater weight.

Updated rankings after yesterday's matches:

1. Brazil
2. Peru
3. Uruguay
4. Portugal
5. Croatia
6. Belgium
7. Spain
8. Chile
9. Iceland
How is GDP per capita relevant?

To a certain extent, obviously, those growing up in famine conditions are not going to be professional athletes.

Additionally, richer countries can invest in facilities and coaching.

However, far more important is the number of people you can choose from. Hence why large poor countries will have 1 million worth of eligible men to become professional footballers, and the likes of Iceland will have 100k.
 

Lowryman

Active Member
Messages
277
Likes
163
Location
Dundee
Supports
Everton,Liverpool,UTD,Dundee,Leeds,Madrid and Milan
#8
How is GDP per capita relevant?

To a certain extent, obviously, those growing up in famine conditions are not going to be professional athletes.

Additionally, richer countries can invest in facilities and coaching.

However, far more important is the number of people you can choose from. Hence why large poor countries will have 1 million worth of eligible men to become professional footballers, and the likes of Iceland will have 100k.
Not to mention the slippery pitches and hot springs getting in the away of training sessions.
 
Messages
28
Likes
1
Location
Wisconsin
Supports
neutral?
Thread starter #9
How is GDP per capita relevant?

To a certain extent, obviously, those growing up in famine conditions are not going to be professional athletes.

Additionally, richer countries can invest in facilities and coaching.

However, far more important is the number of people you can choose from. Hence why large poor countries will have 1 million worth of eligible men to become professional footballers, and the likes of Iceland will have 100k.
You pretty much answered your own question. You mentioned famine, but even malnutrition can impact physical and mental development. Also, those living in extreme poverty often do not have time to take part in sport regularly as they are busy trying to survive. Sport is a leisure activity that people in this class cannot often work at full or even part time. Of course, this is different in cases when they are sponsored to do so, but again, this requires wealth. Another benefit of wealth is better healthcare. So in short, GDP (or any other measure of wealth), is important for sports because they highly impact health, leisure, and training. Note: extreme poverty should not be confused with poverty in our countries, example: ghettos in the United States do not live in extreme poverty, and are actually quite rich, but people perceive them as living in poverty because of different standards.

I'm not sure if you saw, but population amount is considered in the formula, both wealth and population are. However, wealth is more important. Usually countries with less population (within reason) and more wealth will perform better across the board in sports compared to a country with greater population (within reason) and less wealth. The factor for this is basic economic law. As a mental exercise consider 2 countries, 1 with mechanized production and 1 without. The country with mechanized production requires a very small amount of its population to provide basic goods and services to the entire population, but the country without mechanized production requires almost their entire population in this workforce. So the countries that are more industrialized (or control most of the profits of industrialized areas in foreign countries via economic manipulation), will then have much less of this burden to deal with. This frees up time for any type of leisure activity and offers additional resources for decadent consumption or increased investments in chosen fields (sports, for instance).
 
Last edited:

St. Juste

Active Member
Messages
807
Likes
79
Location
Barra da Tijuca
Supports
St. Mirren
#10
You pretty much answered your own question. You mentioned famine, but even malnutrition can impact physical and mental development. Also, those living in extreme poverty often do not have time to take part in sport regularly as they are busy trying to survive. Sport is a leisure activity that people in this class cannot often work at full or even part time. Of course, this is different in cases when they are sponsored to do so, but again, this requires wealth. Another benefit of wealth is better healthcare. So in short, GDP (or any other measure of wealth), is important for sports because they highly impact health, leisure, and training. Note: extreme poverty should not be confused with poverty in our countries, example: ghettos in the United States do not live in extreme poverty, and are actually quite rich, but people perceive them as living in poverty because of different standards.

I'm not sure if you saw, but population amount is considered in the formula, both wealth and population are. However, wealth is more important. Usually countries with less population (within reason) and more wealth will perform better across the board in sports compared to a country with greater population (within reason) and less wealth. The factor for this is basic economic law. As a mental exercise consider 2 countries, 1 with mechanized production and 1 without. The country with mechanized production requires a very small amount of its population to provide basic goods and services to the entire population, but the country without mechanized production requires almost their entire population in this workforce. So the countries that are more industrialized (or control most of the profits of industrialized areas in foreign countries via economic manipulation), will then have much less of this burden to deal with. This frees up time for any type of leisure activity and offers additional resources for decadent consumption or increased investments in chosen fields (sports, for instance).
I don't know how you clarify "within reason".

Plenty of big poor countries have won the world cup, no small rich ones have. Unless you consider, say, Uruguay, which isn't that rich.

The point about malnutrition is absolutely relevant, but affects far less of the population now than it ever has in the past. Brazil was a far poorer country when it first won the world cup in 1958.

Now, how many great footballers are being held back because of lack of basic needs? In Brazil, probably none or very few, a lot of players who have made it are very poor (look at the pic of Gabriel Jesus from 2012).

Relative wealth will play a part in nations where populations and interest in football are quite similar. That's where the methodology will be of good use.

However, I'd back a football mad big poor nation ahead of a rich football mad small nation (say, Brazil vs. Scotland). More people = more potential players to choose from.

Another interesting way to consider this is how immigration (up to second and third) produces a hugely disproportionate amount of footballers. Surely lack of wealth and poor access to other options plays a certain part in this disparity?
 
Messages
28
Likes
1
Location
Wisconsin
Supports
neutral?
Thread starter #12
I don't know how you clarify "within reason".

Plenty of big poor countries have won the world cup, no small rich ones have. Unless you consider, say, Uruguay, which isn't that rich.

The point about malnutrition is absolutely relevant, but affects far less of the population now than it ever has in the past. Brazil was a far poorer country when it first won the world cup in 1958.

Now, how many great footballers are being held back because of lack of basic needs? In Brazil, probably none or very few, a lot of players who have made it are very poor (look at the pic of Gabriel Jesus from 2012).

Relative wealth will play a part in nations where populations and interest in football are quite similar. That's where the methodology will be of good use.

However, I'd back a football mad big poor nation ahead of a rich football mad small nation (say, Brazil vs. Scotland). More people = more potential players to choose from.

Another interesting way to consider this is how immigration (up to second and third) produces a hugely disproportionate amount of footballers. Surely lack of wealth and poor access to other options plays a certain part in this disparity?
The concerns you mention here have all been considered. But I do want to clarify that wealth and population amount are the largest factors outside of interest in the sport. Of course, if a country is devoted to a particular they will typically be better. The purpose of these rankings is to negate the wealth and population difference as much as possible.

The first point you make is more of a "cherry picking" analysis. It is important to consider all data as there are always over and under achievers. Richer and wealthier countries will typically perform better in sports (see here). Uruguay was actually a relatively rich country when it won its 4 world championships (it was richer than most European countries per capita as was Argentina), but that is besides the point. In those days there was much less competition in football then there is now, simply because of the number of countries playing competently (this is also besides the point). I am not saying that small and poor countries can't win, I'm saying that it is much more difficult for them to win and this fact must be considered.

Malnutrition: Yes, malnutrition is less of an issue now, but it is still a huge issue. The more industrialized (or economically manipulative) a country is the bigger, stronger and smarter its people generally will be. As I mentioned before, healthcare is important as well. So even though utter malnutrition is rare in countries like Hungary/Romania/Poland, countries like Netherlands/Sweden/Wales will still have the upper hand in nutrition and healthcare, which plays a huge role in sports. This isn't to say they can't compete or even be better, it just makes it more difficult.

Brazil and poor football players: Yes, as I mentioned before poor athletes can succeed. Though the lack of nutrition and healthcare can compromise their chance of success you still need to consider sports infrastructure. There is a huge football infrastructure in Brazil, this requires wealth. Having said that, it is still easier for athletes for richer backgrounds to succeed. It's easy to think of all the poor athletes that have succeeded, but much harder to imagine all the poor ones who haven't even though they represent the vast majority.

Brazil vs Scotland: Well of course it would be important to pick a country like Brazil over Scotland, or Argentina over Guernsey, etc. As I said before both wealth and population amount are considered. In this particular match Scotland would actually receive a handicap in my rankings because of the vast population difference, even though Scotland is richer. Now if Scotland and Croatia play (Croatia is equally as efficient as Brazil in the sport of football), then Croatia would receive a slight handicap because of the wealth difference. To get an idea of the type of handicaps that are awarded view this link of all 2018 matches. In parenthesis is the actual score, outside is the adjusted score. If you click on the country it will show their estimated economic power. Football is the most difficult sport to award handicaps for because of the lack of scoring opportunities (or how random the scoring opportunities are) in the sport (on a side note, this is also the mathematical reason why football is the least predictable sport).
 
Last edited:

Forum statistics

Threads
13,853
Messages
813,079
Members
4,563
Latest member
JohnyEdward6346