World Cup 2014: 'England players bringing their WAGs to Brazil will have no bearing on success or failure,' reveals Professor Stephen Hawking

Hawking also took a dig at Uruguay's 'ballerina' striker Luis Suarez

England players having their wives and girlfriends with them at next month's World Cup in Brazil will have no bearing on their success at the tournament, according to Professor Stephen Hawking.

"To bring WAGs or not to bring WAGs, that is not the question," he said. "This will have no bearing on England bringing home the bacon, rather England’s likely success can be worked out by looking at a number of environmental, physiological, psychological, political and tactical variables."

The scientist Prof Hawking, whose book 'A Brief History Of Time' was a best-seller, has analysed data from every tournament since 1966 for bookmakers Paddy Power and the bad news is he reckons the heat, the altitude and the distance from home could all scupper England's chances.

But he thinks the prospects for Roy Hodgson's men will be improved for their second group game against Uruguay because he believes match officials from the northern hemisphere will be less sympathetic towards the South Americans' Liverpool striker Luis Suarez's on-pitch theatrics.

England's chances of a victory in the match in Sao Paulo on 19 June will also be 20% higher purely because of the colour of the shirt they will be wearing.

He said: "Statistically England's red kit is more successful and we should play 4-3-3 rather than 4-4-2. Psychologists in Germany found red makes teams feel more confident and can lead them to being perceived as more aggressive and dominant. Likewise, 4-3-3 is more positive so the team benefits for similar psychological reasons.

"The data shows we also need to hope for a European referee. European referees are more sympathetic to the English game and less sympathetic to ballerinas like [Luis]Suarez.

Prof Hawking also outlined his formula for taking penalties.

He said the key to success was a run-up of more than three steps and giving the ball "some welly", but "velocity is nothing without placement".

He said: "If only I had whispered this in Chris Waddle's ear before he sent the ball into orbit in 1990. Use the side foot rather than laces and you are 10% more likely to score.

"The statistics confirm the obvious. Place the ball in the top left or right hand corner for the best chance of success - 84% of penalties in those areas score. The ability of strikers to place the ball results in them being more likely to score than midfielders and defenders."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee