Round of 16 Recap: Winners, Losers, Golden Boot Leaders

A recap of the Round of 16 at Russia 2018

This kid has several World Cups in him after this one. We'll almost certainly see him in Canada-USA-Mexico 2026.
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Part of our 2018 FIFA World Cup Hub

Now that the Round of 16 is over, it’s time once again to look back at the top 3 losers, top 3 winners, and top 3 leaders for the Golden Boot award.

Top Winners/Losers

3rd Place: Uruguay/Portugal

Uruguay vs Portugal was slated to be the closest of the 8 matches in the Round of 16. Uruguay are not exactly regulars to the quarterfinals, and continue to improve as the tournament goes on.

2nd Place: Sweden/Switzerland

Switzerland were favourites over a Swedish team that already exceeded expectations to survive the Group Stage. It will survive in Swedish memory as their best World Cup performance in a generation. Despite competing in their first tournament after Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s retirement, they have repeatedly shown that they are a side not to be underestimated.

This Swedish side eliminated the Netherlands and Italy in qualifying.

1st Place: Russia/Spain

The hosts have created one of the biggest upsets in this tournament, making everyone wonder whether the upsets will continue right to the end.

It’s a miracle run for Russia, and there’s toooootally no chance that there is any funny business involved.

One more win would see the hosts reach the semifinals, matching the record set by the Soviet Union in England 1966.

Golden Boot

After 4 of 7 games, the top three contenders remain unchanged.

Gold: Harry Kane

6 goals (2 against Tunisia, 3 against Panama, 1 against Colombia), 0 assists.

Silver: Romelu Lukaku

4 goals (2 against Panama, 2 against Tunisia), 0 assists, played fewer minutes than Ronaldo.

Silver: Cristiano Ronaldo

4 goals (3 against Spain, 1 against Morocco), 0 assists, played more minutes than Lukaku.

Biggest Upset

This Round: Sweden 1-0 Switzerland

Full Tournament: South Korea 2-0 Germany

Team Grades

A+: Brazil

A: Belgium, France

A-: Croatia, England, Δ Sweden, Uruguay

B+: (e.g. Iran, Mexico, Switzerland)

B: Δ Russia

B-: (e.g. Greece, Japan, Tunisia)

C+: (e.g. Egypt, Panama, Saudi Arabia)

C: (e.g. Armenia, Guinea, Zambia)

C-: (e.g. Botswana, Latvia, Luxembourg)

D+: (e.g. Angola, Fiji, Sudan)

D: (e.g. Afghanistan, Barbados, Liechtenstein)

D-: (e.g. Malaysia, Singapore, South Sudan)

F: (e.g. Maldives, Pakistan, Seychelles)

Mika Ryu

Law student at Western University, and UofT graduate in economics and linguistics. Remember that your version of the world is always too simple.

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