Is there a regional bias within the elo ranking ?


An attention-grabbing query popped up within the discussions round my World Cup simulations and extra particular the considerably decrease than anticipated predicted efficiency of Senegal in comparison with residence nation Qatar in group A. 

Amir commented:

“Elo certainly has a regional downside – since there usually are not many matches between groups from totally different confederations, it takes a very long time for ELO to regulate to the precise common per confederation.

If the distinction are getting smaller (which is one thing price testing), it signifies that Elo will certainly under-estimate CAF.”

Other than the issue to find out the “precise common per confederation”, I personally have the impression that elo rankings usually are not regionally biased, as a result of there is not something within the elo calculation that is influenced by the group’s confederation. However perhaps, certainly the variety of intraconfederational versus interconfederational matches a group playes could possibly be the exogenous issue. I made a decision to provide it a go and analysis this.

First I’ll describe the options of the elo ranking calculation:

I chosen from my match database all matches performed since January 1st 1980 that are included within the elo ranking calculation and decided the match kind and confederation of every collaborating group. There have been in that time-frame three confederation adjustments:

  • Israel switched per 1/1/1994 from AFC to UEFA;
  • Kazakhstan switched per 1/1/2002 from AFC to UEFA;
  • Australia switched per 1/1/2006 from OFC to AFC.

The distribution over the match sorts on this pattern:

kind

N

perc

60

592

2%

50

2.242

7%

40

16.697

50%

30

3.005

9%

20

10.952

33%

whole

33.488

Listed here are tables with the intraconfederational (personal confed) versus interconfederational (different confed) matches per confederation and match kind. Observe that per confederation the matches are counted with no less than one group from that confederation concerned. Because of this the road with the totals reveals not the summed variety of matches per confederation towards different confederations however solely half of it:

All matches

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

present variety of member NT’s

AFC

6.177

2.197

74%

26%

46

CAF

7.731

1.430

84%

16%

54

CONCACAF

3.863

1.667

70%

30%

35

CONMEBOL

1.426

1.844

44%

56%

10

OFC

714

401

64%

36%

11

UEFA

8.483

2.649

76%

24%

55

whole matches

28.394

5.094

85%

15%

Ok=60: WC finals

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

AFC

1

107

1%

99%

CAF

0

132

0%

100%

CONCACAF

1

99

1%

99%

CONMEBOL

8

193

4%

96%

OFC

0

6

0%

100%

UEFA

144

339

30%

70%

whole matches

154

438

26%

74%

Ok=50: continental
championship finals and main intercontinental tournaments

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

AFC

319

61

84%

16%

CAF

618

40

94%

6%

CONCACAF

325

179

64%

36%

CONMEBOL

308

192

62%

38%

OFC

65

28

70%

30%

UEFA

327

60

84%

16%

whole matches

1.962

280

88%

12%

Ok=40: WC and continental
qualifiers and main tournaments

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

AFC

3.683

147

96%

4%

CAF

4.465

70

98%

2%

CONCACAF

2.327

11

100%

0%

CONMEBOL

691

15

98%

2%

OFC

454

63

88%

12%

UEFA

4.913

22

100%

0%

whole matches

16.533

164

99%

1%

Ok=30: all different tournaments

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

AFC

851

483

64%

36%

CAF

688

281

71%

29%

CONCACAF

202

178

53%

47%

CONMEBOL

62

171

27%

73%

OFC

103

88

54%

46%

UEFA

333

331

50%

50%

whole matches

2.239

768

79%

25%

Ok=20: pleasant matches

towards

confed

personal confed

different confed

personal confed

different confed

AFC

1.323

1.399

49%

51%

CAF

1.960

907

68%

32%

CONCACAF

1.008

1.200

46%

54%

CONMEBOL

357

1.273

22%

78%

OFC

92

216

30%

70%

UEFA

2.766

1.897

59%

41%

whole matches

7.506

3.346

69%

31%

Observations:

  • normally 85% of all matches is intraconfederational;
  • CONMEBOL with their 10 member NT’s performs probably the most towards groups from different confederations (56%);
  • CAF with their 54 member NT’s performs the least towards groups from different confederations (16%);
  • in World Cup matches (60) the interconfederational share is logically (as a result of partly compelled within the group stage) the best: 74%;
  • continental finals (50) and qualifiers matches (40) are by nature the match sorts with the bottom share interconfederational matches (resp. 12% and 1%);
  • the ‘pleasant’ match sorts (30 and 20) present increased percentages interconfederational matches once more with resp. 25% and 31%.

I decided for annually from 1980 till 2022 the compete elo-ranking on January 1st, so place and ranking factors per group. Not present groups had been, the place relevant, renamed to their present title: West-Germany grew to become Germany, Burma grew to become Myanmar and so forth. In any other case not present nations (f.i. East-Germany) and likewise non-FIFA members are unnoticed of this evaluation.

With the dissolution of the Soviet-Union, Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia lots of new European nations had been created at first of the nineties. I adopted the customary line of reasoning on this and regarded respectively Russia, Czech Republic and Serbia the rightful successors of those former states.

So as to have the ability to analyze traits in common elo rankings for the top-x groups per confederation I decided per confederation a rating of groups based mostly on the common elo rating place of every group over all 43 yr rankings:

rank in UEFA

group

avg pos

rank in CAF

group

avg pos

1

Germany

5,0

1

Nigeria

42,1

2

Netherlands

6,4

2

Egypt

44,3

3

France

6,5

3

Cameroon

46,6

4

Spain

6,7

4

Ivory Coast

47,6

5

England

6,9

5

South Africa

48,1

6

Italy

7,0

6

Morocco

49,4

7

Croatia

12,8

7

Ghana

52,8

8

Portugal

14,0

8

Tunisia

55,2

9

Russia

16,5

9

Algeria

58,5

10

Denmark

16,6

10

Senegal

60,2

11

Czech Republic

17,5

11

Zambia

69,0

12

Sweden

17,9

12

Dem. Rep. of Congo

76,3

13

Serbia

17,9

13

Mali

80,5

14

Belgium

21,8

14

Libya

80,7

15

Romania

22,6

15

Guinea

85,0

16

Republic of Eire

25,5

16

Uganda

88,7

17

Poland

25,9

17

Zimbabwe

89,9

18

Switzerland

27,4

18

Angola

90,7

19

Scotland

31,9

19

Gabon

92,7

20

Ukraine

32,9

20

Congo

95,6

21

Norway

36,1

21

Burkina Faso

97,4

22

Greece

36,4

22

Togo

100,6

23

Austria

37,5

23

Kenya

102,1

24

Bulgaria

37,9

24

Malawi

106,9

25

Turkey

39,3

25

Madagascar

110,1

26

Wales

40,1

26

Sudan

110,9

27

Slovakia

41,5

27

Sierra Leone

110,9

28

Hungary

42,7

28

Ethiopia

115,9

29

Israel

47,3

29

Liberia

116,4

30

Bosnia and Herzegovina

51,1

30

Gambia

121,1

31

Northern Eire

54,8

31

Cape Verde

121,3

32

Slovenia

55,2

32

Mozambique

121,6

33

Montenegro

57,1

33

Tanzania

122,2

34

Finland

58,9

34

Benin

126,3

35

North Macedonia

63,3

35

Niger

128,6

36

Georgia

64,7

36

Burundi

129,3

37

Iceland

70,0

37

Guinea-Bissau

136,4

38

Belarus

78,5

38

Central African Republic

136,5

39

Albania

84,7

39

Chad

137,2

40

Azerbaijan

95,6

40

Namibia

137,9

41

Latvia

97,6

41

Rwanda

145,2

42

Kazakhstan

102,7

42

Mauritius

153,0

43

Cyprus

103,8

43

Botswana

154,4

44

Moldova

106,3

44

Lesotho

154,4

45

Kosovo

107,2

45

Eswatini

156,3

46

Armenia

111,0

46

Equatorial Guinea

158,0

47

Lithuania

113,6

47

Mauritania

158,3

48

Estonia

120,0

48

Eritrea

162,8

49

Malta

131,0

49

Somalia

174,6

50

Faroe Islands

147,9

50

São Tomé e Príncipe

176,5

51

Luxembourg

153,5

51

South Sudan

181,2

52

Liechtenstein

165,8

52

Seychelles

185,3

53

Gibraltar

178,3

53

Comoros

192,8

54

Andorra

183,3

54

Djibouti

197,8

55

San Marino

193,9

 

rank in AFC

group

avg pos

rank in CONCACAF

group

avg pos

1

Australia

33,0

1

Mexico

17,5

2

South Korea

35,5

2

United States

37,6

3

Iran

36,6

3

Costa Rica

48,5

4

Japan

47,7

4

Honduras

52,5

5

Iraq

54,0

5

Canada

60,2

6

Saudi Arabia

60,5

6

Guatemala

76,2

7

China

61,0

7

Trinidad and Tobago

82,6

8

Uzbekistan

61,0

8

Jamaica

82,8

9

Kuwait

74,3

9

El Salvador

83,4

10

North Korea

77,1

10

Cuba

87,9

11

Qatar

83,0

11

Haiti

96,6

12

Syria

90,1

12

Panama

99,7

13

United Arab Emirates

91,9

13

Suriname

124,0

14

Bahrain

101,0

14

Saint Vincent and the
Grenadines

131,0

15

Jordan

105,1

15

Bermuda

133,6

16

Thailand

108,4

16

Grenada

137,1

17

Turkmenistan

115,5

17

Barbados

139,3

18

Oman

119,6

18

Curaçao

143,2

19

Lebanon

123,3

19

Guyana

151,1

20

Tajikistan

123,8

20

Saint Kitts and Nevis

152,0

21

Vietnam

133,8

21

Saint Lucia

152,0

22

Palestine

139,8

22

Antigua and Barbuda

155,7

23

Indonesia

140,7

23

Dominica

165,9

24

Malaysia

141,8

24

Belize

169,5

25

Hong Kong

142,9

25

Dominican Republic

172,6

26

Singapore

143,0

26

Aruba

175,8

27

Yemen

150,4

27

Nicaragua

176,7

28

Kyrgyzstan

156,7

28

Cayman Islands

181,8

29

Myanmar

159,2

29

Puerto Rico

185,1

30

India

160,5

30

Bahamas

196,5

31

Cambodia

171,8

31

British Virgin Islands

200,0

32

Chinese language Taipei

179,8

32

Turks and Caicos

209,3

33

Pakistan

185,0

33

Montserrat

214,3

34

Bangladesh

185,5

34

US Virgin Islands

216,3

35

Philippines

190,8

35

Anguilla

222,3

36

Maldives

191,8

37

Afghanistan

192,9

38

Macau

194,9

39

Laos

195,0

40

Nepal

195,5

41

Sri Lanka

197,0

42

Mongolia

200,4

43

Brunei

205,7

44

Guam

209,2

45

Bhutan

218,1

46

Timor-Leste

224,7

rank in CONMEBOL

group

avg pos

rank in OFC

group

avg pos

1

Brazil

2,7

1

New Zealand

72,3

2

Argentina

7,1

2

Tahiti

110,8

3

Uruguay

17,9

3

Fiji

121,3

4

Colombia

24,4

4

New Caledonia

134,0

5

Chile

26,3

5

Solomon Islands

147,9

6

Paraguay

27,6

6

Vanuatu

165,7

7

Peru

41,5

7

Papua New Guinea

170,9

8

Ecuador

41,9

8

Cook dinner Islands

210,7

9

Bolivia

57,7

9

Samoa

211,8

10

Venezuela

77,0

10

Tonga

212,1

11

American Samoa

223,8

In a graph:

Beneath are the graphs with the common elo ranking over the top-x groups in every confederation.

For the top-10 groups:

For the top-20 groups:

For the top-30 groups:

Observations:

  • UEFA is in all top-x classes the confederation with the best common ranking over all of the analyzed years;
  • the top-10 groups common ranking for AFC, CAF and CONMEBOL lies shut collectively over all of the years;
  • once we take extra groups in consideration CAF and AFC drop just a little in common ranking (logically) in comparison with CONMEBOL. You may see that AFC climbs in the direction of the CAF common ranking for the highest 20 groups through the eighties and nineties;
  • for the top-30 groups you may see that CAF has an constant increased common ranking than AFC;
  • for the top-10 groups CONCACAF is already decrease in common ranking than AFC, CAF and CONMEBOL and drops even additional away when greater than 10 groups are thought of.

One other analysis facet is the pattern over time in ranking distinction between as an example UEFA and the opposite confederations. I’ve taken UEFA as reference as a result of you may see above that their common ranking over time is sort of fixed.

I’ve put a linear pattern line in every graph to simply see if the ranking distinction is rising of shrinking over time. For these graphs I take into account the common rankings for the top-30 groups so it is solely related for CAF, AFC and CONCACAF:

Observations:

  • the ranking distinction for top-30 groups between UEFA and AFC is unquestionably diminishing over time;
  • for CAF it’s barely rising;
  • for CONCACAF it’s quickly rising.

Conclusions:

  • if a shrinking distinction in common ranking between two confederations is an indication of underestimation of the energy of the groups within the weaker confederation then not groups from CAF however from AFC are evidently underrated by elo;
  • however we additionally see that for CAF and CONCACAF the common ranking distinction is rising. Ought to we then conclude that groups from these confederations are overrated by elo ? No, I believe that elo has no regional bias neither is busy adjusting for that regional bias. It’s only a signal of confederations changing into stronger of weaker over time.
  • What’s for my part a powerful indicator for the considerably low elo rankings for CAF’s high groups could be the constantly excessive common ranking of the top-30 groups in Africa. The typical stage of NT’s in CAF is stronger than in AFC or in CONCACAF, so factors loss by Africa’s high groups is just extra more likely to happen.

About me:

Software program engineer, fortunately single and non-religious. You will not discover me on Twitter or different so referred to as social media. Dutchman, joined the weblog in March 2018.



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