World Cup 2014: Team Power Rankings After Round-of-16 Matches
Welcome to the latest edition of our FIFA World Cup 2014 team power rankings, where we order the sides competing based on their four performances in the competition so far.
The group stage is done and now so is the round of 16; time is flying by, but which team has flown to the top of the pecking order?
Every group winner won their first knockout match, with every runner-up falling by the wayside. Who ever said coming out on top of the pile isn't vitally important?
You can view our previous power rankings here.
The teams who were knocked out in the group stage in order of form:
29. South Korea
27. Ivory Coast
21. Bosnia and Herzegovina
Last Week: 11
Uruguay, sans Luis Suarez, looked drab in attack and uninspired on the ball.
His ban gave La Celeste something to rally around and use to become stronger as a group, but Colombia were irresistible and unstoppable in attack.
Oscar Tabarez's men had a small spell of pressure toward the end of the game but failed to fashion a goal from it. They bow out with their heads down and their reputation severely tarnished.
Last Week: 18
Greece's Achilles' heel reared its ugly head once again last week, with their lack of firepower up top preventing them from punishing 10-man Costa Rica.
Sokratis Papastathopoulos' last-minute equaliser forced extra time, and the second goal felt like a matter of time, but the Piratiko's forwards came up short.
Disappointment reigns, but this was the first time Greece have ever made it past the group stage. A great achievement.
Last Week: 12
Switzerland contained Lionel Messi for 117 minutes, until a stray ball was directed into his path, and he proceeded to slice the defence open before feeding Angel di Maria for a late winner.
It was a drab game, really deserving of going to penalties, and Switzerland's Blerim Dzemaili hit the post with a point-blank header in the final minute of extra time to compound the heartache.
Ottmar Hitzfeld didn't deserve to end his coaching career like this, but the Swiss have a bright future, thanks to his nurturing of young talent.
Last Week: 13
Nigeria started fast against France and matched them for long periods.
Emmanuel Emenike scored a goal that was just ruled offside, and Ahmed Musa looked a real live wire, but the overwhelming quality of Les Bleus' forwards eventually told.
Reaching the round of 16 is a solid achievement for Stephen Keshi given the pool of talent at his disposal.
Last Week: 17
Algeria worked hard, defended superbly and attacked with menace...but Manuel Neuer single-handedly thwarted them in their quest for an upset in Porto Alegre.
Many of the Desert Foxes proved their worth on the biggest of stages, with Faouzi Ghoulam, Aissa Mandi, Abdelmoumene Djabou, Islam Slimani, Sofiane Feghouli and more all firmly fixed in the world's gaze.
Vahid Halilhodzic delivered the country's first-ever campaign in which the team emerged from the group. For that, they'll always be thankful.
Last Week: 14
The USA can consider themselves very unfortunate to have lost to Belgium after extra time, pushing the perceived stronger side all the way and coming within inches of forcing penalties.
Jurgen Klinsmann's dream run in the competition—in which he's knocked out Portugal, Ghana and lost narrowly to two established heavyweights—ends here, but there's no feeling of despair or resentment.
Last Week: 5
This is not the Argentina we expected to see at this stage of the competition.
Another poor showing against Switzerland was only rewarded after Lionel Messi's brilliance to create an opening for Angel di Maria.
They cannot keep stuttering along like this; they'll never get past the semifinals if they do.
Last Week: 8
Mexico were unfortunate to fall at the round-of-16 stage again, seeing their lead against the Netherlands evaporate late on in Fortaleza.
El Tri were the better side for long periods but failed to adapt to the Oranje's formation change, surrendering to the pressure generated by Memphis Depay and Arjen Robben from each wing.
Mexico have fallen in the round of 16 in every World Cup since 1994.
Last Week: 4
Since the 4-0 win over Portugal, Germany have been on the slide form-wise.
Joachim Low's insistence on selecting centre-backs as full-backs and playing a high defensive line with Per Mertesacker is killing them. Manuel Neuer bailed them out against Algeria, but he will make a mistake if he's forced into this situation so regularly again.
Shkodran Mustafi's injury could see Philipp Lahm moved to right-back, but it could also see Mats Hummels restored to a similarly skyscraper-esque back line.
Last Week: 10
Belgium squeezed past the USA in their round-of-16 match-up, with their overwhelming quality in space finally shining through.
Up next is an Argentina side who look bereft of ideas in front of goal, bar a Lionel Messi screamer.
With Romelu Lukaku finally getting the message, the Red Devils could just be warming up.
Last Week: 6
Chile bowed out at the round-of-16 stage to Brazil for the second World Cup running, but this contest (1-1) was decidedly better than 2010's (3-0).
They dominated for spells and came under the cosh for spells; in the end, their frantic playing style sapped their energy and dictated they sit back and pray for penalties.
Julio Cesar, not Claudio Bravo, stole the limelight in the events to come.
Last Week: 9
Brazil scraped past Chile and into the quarterfinals courtesy of a penalty shootout victory, with Julio Cesar playing the part of saviour.
Their vulnerabilities were on display once again, however.
Had Mauricio Pinilla's thunderbolt strike been two inches lower, the dream would be done. Felipao must spend the next few days addressing the problems in midfield and attack.
4. Costa Rica
Last Week: 7
Costa Rica squeezed into the quarterfinals courtesy of a penalty-shootout victory over Greece, with Keylor Navas playing the part of hero once again.
Bryan Ruiz's shanked effort gave them the lead in the second half, but the Piratiko roared back. The Ticos called upon their now-familiar defensive solidity, dropped into a 4-4-1 formation and scraped by in sudden death.
Jorge Luis Pinto is on the fast track to stardom in Costa Rica.
Last Week: 3
France made it three wins from four and picked up their third clean sheet of the tournament against Nigeria on Monday.
Karim Benzema struggled from the left, and that could see the end of Didier Deschamps' tendency to stick him out on the flank, as Les Bleus' hopes rest, largely, on his shoulders.
Having conceded just two goals so far, and with the defensive line set to welcome back Mamadou Sakho, this time will feel like they can beat anyone.
Last Week: 1
The Netherlands cut it close, but a very late turnaround against Mexico saw them progress to the quarterfinals to meet Costa Rica.
Wesley Sneijder's rocket half-volley was a just reward for the Oranje's late dominance; Klaas-Jan Huntelaar's superb penalty was the only foreseeable way of Louis van Gaal's men finding a winner against the magnificent Guillermo Ochoa.
You have to fancy the Dutch for the semifinals.
Last Week: 2
Colombia saw off the challenge of Uruguay with consummate ease last week, with James Rodriguez leaping into the spotlight thanks to two great goals.
His first, an incredible volley from outside the box that required magnificent technique and precision, caught the eye of the world as they watched it over and over again.
Colombia look to be the strongest team in this competition right now.
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