Here's Stephen Hawking's Formula for England's World Cup Chances -- and it's Not Looking Good

By Gerald Lynch on at

It's been 48 years since England lifted the World Cup and, despite producing some of football's brightest stars, our national players always seem to crack under the pressure of the occasion. So what are they getting wrong? Acclaimed physicist Professor Stephen Hawking thinks he's figured out what a procession of England managers have failed to -- and he's got a formula to prove it.

Commissioned by bookmakers Paddy Power, Hawking has tracked a load of variables including the altitude of England's group matches, the distance the team has to travel to get to each game, the temperature and even each team's shirt colour. "Compared to football I think Quantum Physics is relatively straightforward," said Hawking, who has concluded that red shirts and a 4-3-3 formation will give the team the best chances of success.

Hawking even had a stab at dismantling what improves the odds of taking a successful penalty shot, should a dreaded shoot-out occur. Aiming high and taking a long run-up apparently gives players a better chance of scoring. And, somewhat inexplicably, it helps to be bald, too.

So, according to Hawking's massive brain, who will be picking up the trophy this summer? As you'd expect, it's not England, but host nation Brazil that the physicist is tipping for the top prize. Maybe he forgot to carry the one somewhere? Check out the calculations below. [ITV (Twitter)]