Beard World Cup Final

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Final

Cameroon 1 – 3 Greece

Greece are the World Beard Champions!

One of the big favourites didn’t disappoint against surprise opponents Cameroon who have done magnificently to get this far.

First of all a mention to Cameroon, who qualified top of their group ahead of the hosts and went on the run of their lives to reach the final. Their star player was goalkeeper Itandje. A fine, strong beard accentuated by short hair that saved the Indomitable Lions on many occasions.
Itandje 2Cameroon's goalkeeper Charles Itandje at

But Greece had a strength in depth that no one else could match. Whilst there were better individual stand out beards elsewhere in the tournament, as a team, Greece simply couldn’t be beaten, with plenty of beards on the bench to back them up.
Greece 2 Greece's football squad

Greece often started games with 5 or 6 beards on the pitch, something no other team could match.

Led well from the front by captain Georgios Samaras, he recieved plenty of support from the likes of bad-boy Panagiotis Kone, the streamlined Dimitrios Salpingidis, the tidy Ioannis Maniatis, the sexy Orestis Karnezis, the fuzzy Konstantinos Mitroglou, the short Konstantinos Katsouranis and the vaguely frightening Georgios Tzavelas.
Samaras 2
Panagiotis Kone 2SalpingidisIoannis ManiatisFBL-WC-2014-GRE-PRESSERKonstantinos Mitroglou 2Konstantinos KatsouranisGeorgios Tzavelas

Beard World Cup Semi Finals

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Finals
Final

Cameroon 1 – 0 Italy

Most pundits thought Cameroon had done fantastically well to get this far, but to beat one of the favourites have made people sit up and take notice. This Cameroon team is the real deal, and who could have predicted that before the tournament? The Italians are one of the all time great beardy teams, still a long way to go to beat their rugby counterparts, but very entertaining led of course by the big man Andrea Pirlo and his stylish sexy beard.

Pirlo 2

Spain 1 – 2 Greece (aet)

Huge game in the Beard World Cup semi-finals as two more hirsute heavyweights go head to head. Spain are of course famous for their classy beard game, keeping it short and simple and not letting the opponent get a look in. Contrast that with the brash, aggressive Greek beards and you’ve got a great game. After going behind early, the Greeks dug in, got a late equaliser which destroyed the Spanish self beard belief and went on to score the winner in injury time. Xabi Alonso will not be happy to retire without one last trophy.

Xabi Alonso 3The final:

Cameroon vs Greece

Beard World Cup Quarter Finals

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Finals
Final

USA 0 – 1 Greece

USA Training & Press Conference - 2014 FIFA World CupPanagiotis KoneThe biggest match of the tournament so far. Huge support from the USA flocked to wherever it is that this theoretical Beard World Cup is taking place. Tim Howard led the team from the back, with Jones and Beckerman providing fantastic support. However, it wasn’t enough to break down the Greeks who ground out a narrow victory. USA have plenty to be proud of, and will be aiming for the semis in four years time.

Italy 3 – 2 Bosnia

Andrea BarzagliNigeria v Bosnia-Herzegovina: Group F - 2014 FIFA World Cup BrazilNo-one expected Bosnia, led by Medunjanin, to get this far, with most pundits unable to name a single bearded Bosnian before the tournament. Unfortunately, against the pedigree of Italy they just couldn’t get ahead. The plucky Balkan squad counter attacked brilliantly to equalise twice but Italy always looked in control.

Cameroon 2 – 0 Iran

Alexandre SongdejagahThese teams had very different second round matches, and the extra time and penalties against Switzerland really took its toll on Iran. Cameroon, barely out of second gear breezed past the likes of Dejagah to reach the semi finals. The Indomitable Lions are starting to be tipped as potential winners…

Portugal 1 – 4 Spain

MeirelesPiqueThe Iberian Derby that everyone was looking forward to ended up being a bit of a whitewash for the Spanish. Other than a stunning solo goal from many people’s Beard of the Tournament Raul Meireles, the Spanish never looked troubled and scored for fun.

Beard World Cup Second Round

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Final
Final

It’s knockout time in the Beard World Cup, this is where things get serious.

Cameroon 4 -0 The Netherlands
Benoit Assou Ekoto, CameroonDaley Blind, Netherlands

Plenty of depth to the Cameroonian side see them comfortably through. The Netherlands had a few lightly bearded players, but without a star player to rely on were always going out early.

Brazil 1 – 2 Spain

Fred, BrazilSergio Ramos, Spain

Spain, despite not being at their best, still manage to overcome the hosts causing riots, and barbers to be attacked in the streets. Luis Gustavo’s moustache encapsulated the sexy image of Brazil, but not to be outdone, Fred weighed in with this effort.

Greece 4 – 0 England

FBL-WC-2014-GRE-PRESSERLuke Shaw

You don’t want to face Greece this early in a beard tournament, and true to form they, including Karnezis, were relentless against England who relied almost solely on youngsters Lallana and 18-year-old Luke Shaw.

Ivory Coast 2 -3 Italy (aet)

DrogbaFBL-WC-2014-ITA-PRESS

A closer game than most pundits predicted, but Ivory Coast’s over-reliance on goatees left them exhausted after 90 minutes and the Italians, with Daniele De Rossi, managed to stylishly claim the victory. Didier Drogba a massive fuzzy highlight.

Switzerland 2 – 2 Iran (Iran win 5-3 on penalties)

haghighiMehmedi
Switzerland were a big surprise package and flew in under the radar. They battled valiantly through the group stages with Mehmedi and Behrami’s bad boy beards, but ultimately the experience and strength in depth of the Iranians just barely overcame them.

Bosnia & Herzegovina 3 – 1 France

Benzema

An entertaining ding-dong battle between two teams making the most of what they had. France’s over reliance on the bizarre hair/beard combo of Benzema proved to be their undoing. Bosnia surprisingly strong with Kolasinac popping up with a decider in injury time.

USA 2 – 1 Algeria

Jermaine JonesMbolhi

An even game throughout, but the rather shallow beards of the Algerians let them down in the end. Goalkeeper M’Bolhi badly let down by his defence allowing the USA to control the game.

Portugal 1 – 0 Belgium (aet)

AlmeidaSteven Defour

Portugal managed to block out every Belgian attack playing a negative game, even from the likes of Steven Defour, as the sheer creepiness of Hugo Almeida’s moustache kept them at bay. Belgium played valiantly, but we get the feeling 2018 will be their tournament.

 

The quarter final draw:

USA v Greece

Italy v Bosnia

Cameroon v Iran

Portugal v Spain

Beard of the Month – June 2014

The winner is…

Andrea Pirlo

pirlo_2938884bOh, Andrea. You may have a girl’s name, but what a man you are. Despite losing the top Italian beard crown earlier this year, he stills sets the standard for modern bearded style.

Knocked out of the World Cup early, he’ll probably head back to his vineyards and contemplate his teammates facial inferiority. Said to have been retiring, but now reconsidering due to Italy’s dismal performance.

sexy pirlo beard

Pirlo 2

The runners up.

Moeen Ali

Moeen aliAli is a new name to International cricket, having made his debut this year and quickly hitting his first century to salvage a draw against Sri Lanka. However, what should be noted above all else is oh my god look at the beard. Just imagine trying to lob a cricket ball at his stumps without being totally mesmerised by it. Possibly one of the longest beards in modern top class sport.

Dider Drogba

DrogbaDrogba’s beard was not enough to drag the Ivory Coast through the group stages of the World Cup. It seems Didier’s time away from Chelsea has ignited his passion for beard growing and he’s spent the time well. Great to see some of the veterans of football finally understanding what it’s all about.

Raul Meireles

MeirelesArguably the beard of the tournament so far. This photo makes him look a bit like Hugh Jackman made up for a pirate film, but don’t let that put you off. Meireles has been swashbuckling his way through the opposition for years, pillaging the odd goal and making strikers walk the plank. Ok fine, the pirate thing didn’t work, but Meireles caused a storm on twitter every time Portugal played.

Beard World Cup Groups G & H

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Final
Final

Group G

Qualify:
USA
Portugal

Out:
Germany
Ghana

USA

So the Americans are finally getting into football? Bring them on I say! American sports have a great tradition of beards and appear to be bringing it with them. Former Beard of the Month winner Tim Howard has got the beard back, and Jones, Beckerman and Beasley look good too.
Jermaine JonesUSA Training & Press Conference - 2014 FIFA World CupFBL-WC-2014-USA-PRESSER

 

Portugal

Raul Meireles has seriously upped the beardy stakes with one of the longest, thickest beards I’ve seen on a football pitch. Almeida’s moustache, while commendable, is possibly ill-advised, but Neto and Vierinha provide adequate backup.
AlmeidaLuis NetoVIEIRINHA

 

 

Germany

“Never underestimate the Germans at a World Cup”. Unless it’s a Beard World Cup, in which case you probably can. Most Germans a picture of clean-shaven efficiency apart from Khedira and Hummels.
KhediraGermany's national soccer team player Hummels addresses a news conference in the village of Santo Andre

 

Ghana

Kevin Prince-Boateng is often the centre of some controversy or other, and his goatee possibly counts as controversial. Unfortunately that’s as good as it gets for the Ghanaian team. Essien sports a more orthodox but less interesting goatee.
Prince-BoatengEssien

 

Group H

Qualify:
Belgium
Algeria

Out:
Russia
South Korea

Belgium

The ‘dark horses’. The future stars. The ‘hipster team’ to support. Apparently. Either way, they’re a pretty strong team. Anthony Vanden Borre caused a stir on Twitter after just the briefest flash on the bench (not that kind of flash). Also, Defour, Mertens and Dembele.
Vanden BorreSteven DefourMoussa DembeleDries Mertens

 

Algeria

Algeria feature another impressively bearded goalkeeper. An excellent idea for that little bit of extra protection between the sticks. I haven’t been able to see much of this team in action, but this smattering of beards should stand them in good stead.
MbolhiFBL-WC-2014-ALG-TRAININGNabil GHILAS

FBL-WC-2014-FRIENDLY-ALG-ROM

 

Russia

When you think of Russia you think of long, cold nights, hard-driving snow and big burly men sipping vodka. These men may be numerous in Russia, but alas not in the Russian football team. The best I could do you was Zhirkov, and that’s not going to keep him warm is it?
Zhirkov

 

 

 

 

 

 

South Korea

The most offensively unbearded team I’ve ever seen. Had to include Jangwoo Park for comedy purposes as the very best his country could produce.
PARK Jongwoo

 

 

Beard World Cup Groups E & F

Groups A & B
Groups C & D
Groups E & F
Groups G & H
Second Round
Quarter Finals
Semi Final
Final

Group E

Qualify:
Iran
Bosnia & Herzegovina

Out:
Argentina
Nigeria

Iran

Surprisingly disappointing for a team from a Muslim nation. Possibly a bit of a stereotypical view, but I expected more. Led well by Dejagah with Haghighi, Haji Safi and Ghoochannejad.
dejagahhaghighi

 

Bosnia

Second place in this gorup was a close call, mostly because the other teams were pretty poor. I was not at all impressed by Bosnia’s first outing, but as the games have rolled by, they’ve started to pick themselves up, especially Pjanic, Medunjanin, Kolasinac and Bicakcic.
PjanicNigeria v Bosnia-Herzegovina: Group F - 2014 FIFA World Cup BrazilKolasinacSlovakia v Bosnia-Herzegovina - FIFA 2014 World Cup Qualifier

Argentina

Very poor from Argentina, fortunately for them, they had Lavezzi and Higuain to drag them off the bottom spot.
LavezziHiguain

 

Nigeria

No standout beard performance from the African champions. Oh, there was stubble, and neckbeards and some general fuzz but I just couldn’t get excited by any of it.
Michael Babatunde Ogenyi Onazi

 

 

Group F

Qualify:
France
Switzerland

Out:
Honduras
Ecudaor

Switzerland

Surprise package of the tournament for me. Not sure why I didn’t expect much, but some sterling efforts including Mehmedi, Djourou, Rodriguez and Behrami.
MehmediDjourou
Rodriguez
Behrami

 

France

The French seemed to have stopped arguing amongst themselves and got down to the serious business of growing beards. A decent effort from Lloris, Benzema, Cabaye and Evra, but more length needed to challenge for silverware.
BenzemaCabayeEvra

Honduras & Ecuador

Thoroughly beaten by France and Switzerland and would played out a -1 all draw between themselves. When these two teams lined up against each other, there wasn’t a single beard in either starting XI. Separating them would be a pointless exercise.