The World Cup of sentiment
The semifinals may start tomorrow, but the darlings of the World Cup have already been established. To identify which countries have won and which have lost in terms of sentiment, I’ve analyzed the net positive sentiment of the 16 teams* that qualified for elimination play across two time periods. The first time period was June 10 to June 17. This time period straddled the opening ceremonies and the earliest matches of pool play. I picked this time as a baseline because it captured both pre-tournament sentiment, yet also captured newly formed opinions after at least one match per team. The second time period was from June 25th to July 2nd. I picked this time due to the fact that it captured the chatter immediately before the round of 16 and immediately after.
Over the first time period analyzed, we saw a very small net positive average sentiment of .7% with a spread of -.4% to 1.4%. The host country (Brazil) won this round with a net positive sentiment of 2%, and there were only two teams with net negative sentiments: USA at a -.2% and Nigeria at a -.4%. By the time the round of 16 was completed, we had a new winner. Before revealing the champion, let’s take a look at the values for the second period analyzed. The average net positive sentiment was 2.1%, an increase of over 200%! Let’s celebrate this. As a soccer fan, it is great to see people responding positively on social media. I hope it leads to increased popularity here in the USA.
I measured the winners based on the change between the first and second periods analyzed.
3rd Place: USA, -.2% >> 2.8% = +3%. The only team in the top three to move from a net negative to positive sentiment.
2nd Place: Costa Rica, 1.0% >> 4.2% = +3.2%. Maybe it was due to the gutsy play against Greece where they played only ten men for almost the entire second half, or maybe it was the way they won in a shootout.
1st Place: Columbia 1.4% >> 6.5% = +3.2%. Are there any other fans that seem to have as much fun as Columbia’s? Could be the great play of James Rodriguez that has captured fans worldwide, but I think everyone appreciates a party.
Regardless of how it turns out, it is great to see that the World Cup is winning its sentiment “matches”.
* Columbia, Costa Rica, USA, Algeria, Argentina, Belgium, Nigeria, France, Netherlands, Greece, Chile, Mexico, Germany, Switzerland, Brazil, Uruguay
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