Determinants of European national men’s football team performance : Scotland's potential progress in the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifiers

Scelles, N. and Andreff, W. (2014) Determinants of European national men’s football team performance : Scotland's potential progress in the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifiers. University of Strathclyde, Glasgow.

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    Abstract

    In this paper, we estimate the potential outcomes for Scotland in the 2016 Euro qualifiers, based on a model of the outcomes of previous European men's football matches. The sampled dataset includes all matches played between European national men’s football teams between August 2012 and December 2013, that is 368 matches in all. According to our model, Scotland should fail to progress to the UEFA Euro 2016 playoffs by only one goal in Group D. This result is confirmed when we correct our model to take into account the difference between real scores and scores provided by the model for each team in Group D. Nevertheless, in a third model – which is a better predictor – Scotland should come third in Group D and thus proceed to the playoffs in which it could hope to qualify for the Euro 2016 Finals. A fourth and final approach predicts that Scotland could even come second in Group D, behind Germany, and thus qualify directly to the UEFA Euro 2016 Finals in France.