What will the USA, Germany and Norway achieve in 2014?

Germany at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil
We have now passed the half-way mark of the sporting year 2014, and hailed Germany as winners in the FIFA Men’s Football World Cup. It’s time to see what the Global Cup, the ranking of the world’s greatest nations in sport, is suggesting as to the possible top positions come the end of December, and assess the chances of success of three of the world’s best sporting nations.
1. Will Germany beat Russia to Global Cup second place? Very difficult, but not impossible.
It would be a first in 7 years of GSN history. Germany has bagged 1000 points in July thanks to football’s most coveted award, and is now in second place in the table, their highest ranking ever. Given Germany has scored on average 2746 points in the last four editions of the Global Cup (excluding points from the Football World Cup) and adding 1000 points to this figure, we have a potential 3746 points by year end. A glance at the final rankings in the last four years tells us Russia have always scored more than 4000 points per year… except in 2010 (another Football World Cup year), when they scored 3690. So it just might be possible for Germany to edge them, though so far this year, excluding football, Germany have been rather below par, as their recent form at the European Athletics Championships has confirmed.
2. Will the USA reach at least 10% of total overall points? Possible.
The mighty Stars & Stripes are currently leading the Global Cup with 9.6% of points, and have exceeded a 10% share only once twice before, in 2008 (10.8%) and 2012 (a record 11.3%). The clue is in these both being Olympic years… but with many major Tennis and Golf tournaments still to come this year, and the Basketball and Volleyball World Championships scheduled in September (both big point-earners), the USA are in with a chance to reach a double-figures share. They’re currently riding a very positive trend, with more than double the points than in July 2013 and, given a 67% rise in total points distributed overall so far this year, a rising share of the bounty.
3. Will Norway be the first country to win the Per Capita Cup three times? Very likely.

The hardy Norses have at the moment a comfortable margin over Slovenia (2013 winners) and Scandinavian rivals Sweden. In the past, the Per Capita Cup, awarded to the world’s sportiest country, i.e. that requiring the smallest number of inhabitants to earn one GSN point, has always been won or lost by a matter of 500 citizens or less. Apart from 2010, when Norway won for the first time, with a 1823 ‘heads’ margin over Switzerland. Norway’s current margin over Slovenia is very comfortable at over 2300 ‘heads’, and even a late rally by 2012 Per Capita champions New Zealand, after the Rugby Union’s TriNation tournament next October, is unlikely to stop Norway from adding to their successes in 2011 and 2010.