- The World Cup is underway, with crypto companies getting in on the act
- OKX has launched an NFT tournament, with customers able to mint three free NFTs
- Brazil the favourites, but European nations have won every tournament since 2002
It’s World Cup time.
Unquestionably the biggest sporting competition on the planet, the World Cup is a truly global event. While this edition may be marred by human rights abuses and the corrupt nature in which it was awarded, 32 nations have nonetheless come together to decide who will reign supreme for the next four years.
Crypto world leverages World Cup for exposure
Even within the world of cryptocurrency, the World Cup has an impact. There was Cristiano Ronaldo launching an NFT collection on Binance. While this would have been otherwise notable, it was buried in the news because it came amid Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao arguing with Sam Bankman-Fried on Twitter, which ultimately led to the scandalous collapse of FTX.
First Lionel Messi stealing Ronaldo’s limelight (what a goal that was against Mexico), and then Sam Bankman-Fried. The guy can’t catch a break.
Elsewhere within NFTs, OKX has launched an OKX Football Cup, a competition which allows players to mint NFTs and compete for prizes. While I have been critical of the NFT market for its lack of value as part of the flailing metaverse, I do love my football.
And so, despite my current apprehension towards NFTs, with the option to mint free NFTs for three different teams, I decided to have a fun look and see which teams were best placed to win the World Cup. Although, I should caveat, that these NFTs with OKX are not strictly free. Customers are still required to pay gas fees, which on Ethereum can be rather steep – and in fact put me off minting one myself.
But as long as you mint before the group stage ends on December 3rd, you will be able to enter the competition, and the gas fee will be the only charge.
Who will win the World Cup?
In deciding who are the best teams to mint, I first charted the odds of each team winning the tournament. For this, I pulled the bookmaker odds, as of Tuesday 29th November (this is before the resolution of the England/US group this evening).
At 27.4%, Brazil are deemed the most likely team to win the tournament. Personally, I’d love to see them do it. The national team of Brazil is nothing short of iconic, and having not held the trophy aloft since 2002, it would be nice to see them do it.
In fact, European teams have won the last four World Cups since Brazil beat Germany 2-0 in Yokohama, Japan in 2002. Italy were victors four years later in 2006 (courtesy of a Zinedine Zidane mental breakdown), Spain triumphed in 2010 as part of their utter dominance of international football, Germany beat Argentina in 2014 and France topped a plucky Croatian outfit in 2018.
Is it a good idea to mint Brazil?
In truth, the answer to who to mint here is easy. It’s the top three favourites: Brazil, France and Spain. With their chances of winning numbered at 27.4%, 14.7% and 12.2% respectively, there is a 53% chance that one of the trio lifts the trophy aloft.
But where is the fun in picking the favourites?
My heart says Argentina, as it would be a joy to watch the little maestro, Lionel Messi, walk off into the sunset with the biggest prize of all under his arm. But having watched the Argentinians struggle mightily so far, their 10% odds of winning seem generous.
For me, in the absence of my own country from the tournament (Ireland) I’m cheering on the two South American nations. As a European, it’s nice seeing Spain, France and the likes playing well, but I’m ready to see the South Americans take back their crown.
Deep down, I think Spain or France may do it, though. I don’t know why I don’t trust Brazil, as talented as their squad is. A knock to Neymar won’t help either.
But hey, who knows. That’s why we watch the games, I guess.