Back in the pre-NBC days of the Premier League, soccer fans got the commentary duo of Ian Darke and former Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester City great Steve McManaman on ESPN. The two would be a memorable staple even after ESPN didn’t have Premier League rights as the two of them spend their TV time on BT Sport in the UK and ESPN in the United States.

McManaman is typically held in high regard for his direct approach of analysis and being able to praise and speak critically of his former teams and not make it seem like he is being biased.

Apparently, Macca is freaking brilliant at making predictions because before the World Cup round of 16 started a couple weeks ago, McManaman was able to predict 10 of 12 matchups correctly, only getting two round of 16 matchups incorrect and correctly predicting the semifinal and final matchups.

Even though McManaman is a soccer expert, it’s incredibly tough for even experts to correctly predict games with this much accuracy. Anything can happen, especially in this World Cup and part from missing the Russia upset over Spain and Uruguay’s defeat over Portugal, McManaman was spot on.

So who does McManaman have in the final? After 20 years, Macca believes France will bring back the trophy and Croatia’s magical run will end just short of championship glory. But Croatia has proved all the doubters wrong so far. Maybe they’re going to save the best for last in Steve McManaman.

About Phillip Bupp

News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing, highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them.

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