Dec 17

Manage A Team In The Pop World Cup 2018!

FT/48 comments • 1,327 views

zabivaka Bozhe moi! IT’S BACK! The draw for the Football World Cup was made today, and so, for the fourth time, we’re delighted to host the POP WORLD CUP.

The point of this post is very simple. If you want to be a manager in the Pop World Cup, put your name in the comments and pick a specific team (first come first served) or ask us to choose a random one.

More clarification? But of course!

What is the Pop World Cup? It’s a music competition involving the 32 countries in the “real” World Cup vying to see who is the best at pop music. It will take place starting in February next year, before the football World Cup starts.

What does being a manager involve? It involves taking on one of the countries and finding pop music from it. Your tracks are pitted against tracks from other nations, and people vote on which they like best. Just as in the football World Cup, the idea is to progress to the final (and win it). You’ll be expected to find at least 3 tracks and at most 7. The Pop World Cup has very different outcomes from the football World Cup, as proven by the fact that England actually won it last time.

What are the 32 qualifying nations I can pick from? Ones in italics are taken:

Group A Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay
Group B Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran
Group C France, Australia, Peru, Denmark
Group D Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, Nigeria
Group E Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia
Group F Germany, Mexico, Sweden, South Korea
Group G Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England
Group H Poland, Senegal, Colombia, Japan

If you took part in a previous Pop World Cup please don’t pick a team you previously managed.

Are there any new rules? I’ve not totally finalised this years POP FOOTBALL CODE but this PWC is likely to be fairly close to the last one, i.e. only 2010s tracks will be eligible. The only new rule is that tracks will need to be on Spotify OR YouTube to qualify.

1. We’re shortening the “Group Stage” so it doesn’t drag on, and we’re simplifying the scoring.
2. It’ll be easier to vote and comment via Facebook, Twitter etc.
3. YouTube links are fine – you don’t need to find MP3s.
4. Only 2010s tracks will be eligible – so this will represent current music.

This will mean less hassle and more fun for managers and listeners alike (I hope!).

Over to you – if you want to join in, put your name in the comments, either with a country, or asking for a random draw. We’ll put up the final managers’ list on Freaky Trigger once we’ve got enough people, and allot the random countries.



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  1. 31
    carsmilesteve on 10 Dec 2017 #

    As discussed yesterday, can I have Costa Rica instead of England please?

  2. 32
    Tom on 11 Dec 2017 #

    Right, Steve M has Croatia, Carsmile has Costa Rica, and PWC veteran Wichita Lineman is pulling the sheepskin coat back on for Tunisia.

    Which means – remarkably – that both the previous PWC winners, Nigeria and England, are up for grabs.

  3. 33
    jeff w on 11 Dec 2017 #

    Mullah Resmat is remarkably quiet. I guess with the US having failed to qualify and Britain broke, there is no Axis of Evil administration that can afford his services this time round.

  4. 34
    Edward Still on 12 Dec 2017 #

    Iceland. Very pleased with that! Now to not pick 3 Bjork album tracks.

  5. 35
    lockedintheattic on 13 Dec 2017 #

    Delighted to have Poland. Na zdrowie! When will this be kicking off? Want to know when I need to start my research…

  6. 36
    Adam Grylls on 30 Dec 2017 #

    Hi, I’m new here, if you’re still in need of a manager, I’d willingly put myself forth.

  7. 37
    weej on 30 Dec 2017 #

    Will the cut-off point for tracks be 2010 or 2014?

  8. 38
    Tom on 2 Jan 2018 #

    2010 – full details and timings up this week, sorry for the delay!

  9. 39
    weej on 18 Feb 2018 #

    *suspicious cough*

  10. 40
    jeff w on 21 Feb 2018 #

    we only like curling and slopestyle now, sorry. can I be OAR?

  11. 41
    weej on 22 Feb 2018 #

    Pop Olympics sounds like a brilliant idea. Maybe genres could stand for disciplines, or certain characteristics of songs, like sub 1 min songs = the 100m, singers with high-pitched voices for the high jump, most aggressive track for the boxing, or perhaps even other, better ideas.

  12. 42

    (for those wondering abt the delay, tom has been called away on family business)

  13. 43
    Tom on 5 Jun 2018 #

    Barely believably I have now SENT OUT THE DETAILS of this. No so-called ‘corruption enquiry’ could stop the might of POP FOOTBALL 2018.

  14. 44
    Joe on 25 Jun 2018 #

    OK so I’m new and I haven’t seen any updates to this. Is it too late to take a team and which ones have already been taken?

  15. 45
    Tom on 26 Jun 2018 #

    Hi Joe! On paper we have all 32 managers, in reality I’m still waiting for tracks from a few of them – if any of them can’t manage it I will get in touch!

  16. 46
    Joe on 26 Jun 2018 #

    Keep me in the know, Tom! I’d be happy to join in.

  17. 47
    Joe on 1 Jul 2018 #

    Any news? I’ll be fine with anything, but if you haven’t got anyone on England…

  18. 48
    Tom on 4 Jul 2018 #

    We have got an England manager (and a track from them!) but a few others are keeping quiet. I’ll send one more email and then let you know – thanks!

    I’m going to put another couple of games up today and tomorrow too.

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