Sport

Professor Stephen Hawking solves how England can win the World Cup!


The cleverest bloke in the universe (probably) Professor Stephen Hawking has figured out mysteries of the universe, while we've been figuring out how much is the right amount of lemonade for a lager top.

But with the help of Paddy Power, Professor Hawking has put his mind into figuring out something much more elusive and challenging: how can England win the World Cup?

He's come up with this simple formula:

We won't go into the nitty-gritty of what all of those numbers and weird simples mean, but it's basically boiled down to these set of conditions:

- Temperature: Temperate climates are best. A 5?C rise in temperature is expected to reduce England’s chances of winning by 59%.
- Altitude: England are twice as likely to win when playing below 500m above sea level.
- Distance from home: England are 22% more likely to win when travelling short haul. Cultural differences and jet lag take their toll.
- Kick-off: England are creatures of habit and their chances of winning could improve by a third when starting at 15.00 local time. The evening kick-off against Italy is bad news.
- Formation: A confident 4-3-3 has a success rate of 58% compared to 48% when playing 4-4-2.

He's not settled with figuring out England's World Cup win, the genius has worked out how to take the perfect penalty.

Because you know that the Three Lions will face the inevitable penalty shootout that will have them on the plane home to Heathrow.

And it looks like this:

Once again, we won't go into the details, but what it means is:

- Player position: Forwards have the best scoring record for penalty shootouts at 81%, but their teammates aren’t too far behind with midfielders scoring 67% and defenders scoring 65%.
- Player’s hair type: Blondes and baldies have more fun. Fair-haired and balding players have a success rate of 84% and 71% compared to darker haired player who have 69% success.
- Run up: Give it some welly! There is only a 58% probability of scoring if your run-up is three steps or under.
- Side footed: Place the ball with the side foot and you are 10% more likely to score than if you whack it with your laces.
- Aim: 84% of penalties in the top corner go in. The highest percentage of any area.
- Goalkeepers: They are 18% more likely to save the ball if they move from side to side.

So there you go Rooney and co, follow those instructions and we'll be lifting the World Cup in a month or so!

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