World Cup 2010: Every Possible Scenario From England's Final Round Of Matches In Group C Suggests The Odds Are Against Capello

Three Lions will be riding their luck with anything less than victory...

Given England’s uninspiring World Cup thus far and the draw against Algeria, fans and bookies alike are now working out what the Three Lions must do to progress in the campaign.

The stark reality for Fabio Capello and his squad is that anything less than a win against Slovenia this Wednesday will mean almost certain elimination, and current form points to a tough game against the Eastern Europeans in Port Elizabeth.

Here's our ready reckoner for how things would pan out:


USA win
USA & Alg draw
Algeria win
England win

USA & England progress.

England must better the USA result to top group. If goal difference and goals scored is tied, lots will be drawn.

England through as group winners.

Slovenia through in second place.

England through as group winners.

Algeria or Slovenia through in second place, depending on goal difference, then goals scored.





Eng & Slo draw

USA & Slovenia progress.

USA must win by at least two goals to top group. If goal difference and goals scored is tied, lots will be drawn.


Slovenia through as group winners.

USA through unless England score two or more goals. If goal difference and goals scored is tied, lots will be drawn.




Slovenia through as group winners.

Algeria through in second place.





Slovenia win

Slovenia through as group winners.

USA through in second place.


Slovenia through as group winners.

USA through in second place.

Slovenia through as group winners.

Algeria through in second place.

At first glance things seem easy enough to work out. Whoever wins the final group clashes - England v Slovenia, USA v Algeria - will progress.

If both the USA and England win their next games then goal difference will determine who wins the group – England must better the Americans' result by at least two clear goals on Wednesday to even stand a chance of progressing as group winners and securing a slightly easier path to the final.

Other scenarios make bleak reading for Three Lions fans, with the most interesting permutation the possibility of England drawing 2-2 with Slovenia and the USA drawing 0-0.

This would mean that both teams finished the group stage with equal points, goal difference, and goals scored, bringing FIFA's tie-breaker into effect.

The official rulebook for the 2010 World Cup states that a "drawing of lots by the FIFA Organising Committee," would take place. That’s page 41, article 30 for those Goal.com readers who really want to play things by the book.

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