Before the tournament started the RBM writers got together and offered their predictions for the upcoming tournament – but just how wrong were we? Well, read on:
Firstly, well done to Adam and Brian, who correctly tipped that Germany would come out on top. They were certainly in the minority as Calvin, Sean F, Sean L and Tom all tipped hosts Brazil to lift the trophy.
It was so close and yet so far for Darren and Alex though, who both predicted runners-up Argentina would go all the way.
Tournament surprise package
Though the eventual semi-finalists proved to be powerhouses of the world game, there were a few sides who caused shocks along the way - as predicted by some of our team.
Adam and Darren both thought the star-studded Belgium team would shine, but is a quarter-final place a success given their squad? That is still up for debate.
Alex, Tom and Calvin thought France would do well and although they started off impressively, their meek exit in the quarter-final against Germany was a bit of a let down.
Sean F and Sean L both thought Chile would shock a few people, which proved correct when they beat holders Spain in the group stage. They were also unlucky to face Brazil in the second round and equally unfortunate to go out on penalties.
No-one, however, saw Costa Rica coming.
Place in a tough looking group D they embarrassed England, Uruguay and Italy, finishing top of their group and eventually reaching the quarter-finals, only to lose to the Netherlands on penalties. It was their best ever run at a World Cup and also one of the most surprising.
Most disappointing team
There were a number of teams who underwhelmed at this World Cup and our predictions were equally scattered.
Both Adam and Sean L thought Uruguay would struggle and it is up for debate whether a second round exit is considered a success or not after their run to the semi-final in 2010.
Brian was spot on in tipping England to disappoint, as was Calvin in his prediction that Spain would fail to hold onto their trophy.
Alex convincingly argued that the Netherlands would struggle this time round, but a run to the semi-finals has to be considered a success even if it is one round less than four years ago.
Brazil made it to the semi-finals but their humiliating final two games means this tournament – on home soil –must be considered failure, meaning Darren and Sean F were right in their predictions.
Tom tipped Portugal to disappoint while also suggesting Italy would struggle. Those predictions proved correct when both sides failed to escape their group.
Which player will make this tournament
The best player award also failed to produce one outstanding candidate, though Adam’s prediction of Thomas Muller was not far from the truth.
Alex and Calvin tipped Lionel Messi to shine and although he won the player of the tournament award, most of the planet agree he was nowhere near being the best player.
Injury mid-tournament perhaps scuppered Darren’s prediction, Sergio Aguero to shine, while Tom and Sean F’s prediction, Neymar, began the tournament brightly but ended it on a stretcher.
Kudos to Alex and Sean F, though, who both thought eventual World Cup match winner Mario Gotze would have an impact on the tournament.
The team’s predictions were most accurate in this category, with Alex and Darren correct in tipping Cristiano Ronaldo to struggle.
Calvin tipped Andrea Pirlo to flop and although he wasn’t Italy’s worst player, he failed to live up to the hype as Italy bowed out early.
Wayne Rooney may have finally scored a World Cup goal but he failed to set the tournament alight, as predicted by Sean L and Tom, while Sean F somehow knew that both Rooney and Ronaldo would struggle.
Alex thought time and pressure may catch up with Arjen Robben, but the Bayern Munich man turned back the clock to drag the Netherlands through to the last four.
Brian thought Ross Barkley would disappoint, more due to unfair expectations than anything else. In the end he did not really get enough game time to be criticised, and many of his team mates fared much, much worse.
All in all our World Cup predictions were not too shabby, with plenty of correct forecasts. With the Premier League season just a month away we will return on the eve of the campaign with another roundtable prediction how Everton will do in 2014/15.