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Showing posts from June, 2018

FIFA World Cup 2018: A not-so-artificially-intelligent predictor

JUN 20, 2018:
It's been close to a week since FIFA World Cup 2018 started. We have already seen almost as many upsets as there were fancy advanced models pre-tournament trying to predict the outcomes. There has been a flurry of articles and scholarly papers using Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning to predict the tournament results this year. Included in that list are the usual suspects such as FiveThirtyEight and bookmakers, as well as unlikely participants such as Goldman Sachs and Cornell University (maybe not that unlikely).
Inspired by these articles, some heated arguments, a few cups of coffee, and with my trusted Microsoft Excel, I set about creating my own not-so-intelligent predictor. It's a fairly simple model that runs Monte Carlo simulations, and uses some hard coded inputs on pre-tournament form, such as: FIFA Ranking PointsFootball ELO RatingsGoals Scored, Goal Conceded and Undefeated streaks since World Cup 2014Number of Ballon d'Or winners in the team