After counting down the years, months, weeks, days, hours, minutes, and seconds, the 2014 FIFA World Cup kicked off on June 12 in Sao Paulo, with Brazil defeating Croatia 3-1. Since that opening whistle, there has been a group stage record 136 goals scored in Brazil, a defending champion has been sent packing, and there have been plenty of other surprises along the way. The Round of 16 will kickoff tomorrow, with Brazil taking on fellow South Americans Chile, and all 16 remaining teams know that it is time to do, or they will die.
Some roads have been easier than others, as France and Colombia rarely, if ever, looked troubled in the group stage. While Algeria, Uruguay, and the United States were among those who had to wait until their final group matchdays to secure their advancement to the next phase of the tournament. No matter the path, though, the end result is the same for these 16 nations, as they all have a one-off to chance to either live up to the hype or provide an in improbable upset.
Don't have time to analyze all the squads before the action? No worries, we did it for you by Ranking the Final 16 Teams in the World Cup.