Stephen Hawking helps England with World Cup chances

Before you go, we thought you'd like these...
X
Stephen Hawking helps England with World Cup chances
LONDON, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 09: Professor Stephen Hawking attends the UK Premiere of 'The Theory Of Everything' at Odeon Leicester Square on December 9, 2014 in London, England. (Photo by Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images)
In this Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014 file photo, Professor Stephen Hawking, right, and cast member Eddie Redmayne arrive on the blue carpet for the UK premiere of "The Theory of Everything" at the Odeon in Leicester Square, central London. In its 87th year, acting front runners for the Academy Awards are Redmayne, for his portrayal of the ALS-afflicted Hawking in 'The Theory of Everything,'€ and Julianne Moore, a five-time nominee who is long overdue for a golden statuette, for her depiction of a woman suffering from early onset Alzheimer's in 'Still Alice.' The Oscars are presented on Sunday, Feb. 22, 2015, in Los Angeles. (Photo by Joel Ryan/Invision/AP, File)
LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 18: The world's best know scientist Professor Stephen Hawking takes VisitLondon.com's Official Guest of Honour Adaeze Uyanwah on a personal guided tour of his favourite places in the city's famous Science Museum on February 18, 2015 in London, England. On the tour Professor Hawking said he was pleased to lend his synthesised 'voice' to actor Eddie Redmayne for his Oscar-nominated performance in The Theory of Everything but added ' unfortunatley Eddie did not inherit my good looks.' (Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for London & Partners)
Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking poses for a picture ahead of a gala screening of the documentary film 'Hawking', a film about his life, at the opening night of the Cambridge Film Festival in Cambridge, eastern England on September 19, 2013. Hawking tells the extraordinary tale of how he overcame severe disability to become the most famous living scientist in a new documentary film premiered in Britain. (Photo credit: ANDREW COWIE/AFP/Getty Images)
British physicist, Professor Stephen Hawking speaks during the Opening Ceremony for the 2012 Paralympics in London, Wednesday Aug. 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham)
British physicist, Professor Stephen Hawking speaks during the Opening Ceremony for the 2012 Paralympics in London, Wednesday Aug. 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Physicist and best-selling author Stephen Hawking appears in Seattle, Saturday, June 16, 2012. Hawking was taking part in the Seattle Science Festival Luminaries Series. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Physicist and best-selling author Stephen Hawking appears in Seattle, Saturday, June 16, 2012. Hawking was taking part in the Seattle Science Festival Luminaries Series. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Physicist and best-selling author Stephen Hawking appears in Seattle, Saturday, June 16, 2012. Hawking was taking part in the Seattle Science Festival Luminaries Series. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
An aide helps guide British physicist Stephen Hawking off the stage at the 2010 World Science Festival opening night gala performance at Alice Tully Hall on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)
British physicist Stephen Hawking attends the 2010 World Science Festival opening night gala performance at Alice Tully Hall on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)
An aide helps guide British physicist Stephen Hawking off the stage at the 2010 World Science Festival opening night gala performance at Alice Tully Hall on Wednesday, June 2, 2010 in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Agostini)
In this April 5, 2010 file photo, Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking, of England, presents a lecture titled, "Out of a Black Hole" at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas. Hawking says it is too risky to try to talk to space aliens. Oops. Too late. NASA and others have already beamed several messages into deep space, trying to phone ET. NASA _ which two years ago, broadcast the Beatles song "Across the Universe" across the galaxy _on Wednesday discussed its latest search strategy for life outside of Earth. It is more aimed at looking for simple life like bacteria in our solar system than fretting about potential alien overlords coming here. (AP Photo/Dave Einsel, File)
Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking, left, gets a kiss from Beverly Guster, right, prior to the dedication of an auditorium named after him at the George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy on the Texas A&M campus Monday April 5, 2010 in College Station. Guster is a staff member of the Institute. (AP Photo/Dave Einsel)
Theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking left, receives applause from the crowd after commenting during the dedication of an auditorium named after him at the George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy on the Texas A&M campus Monday April 5, 2010 in College Station. (AP Photo/Dave Einsel)
In this handout photo provided by Zero Gravity Corp., astrophysicist Stephen Hawking floats on a zero-gravity jet, in this April 26, 2007, file photo. The modified jet carrying Hawking, a handful of his physicians and nurses, and dozens of others first flew up to 24,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean off Florida. Nurses lifted Hawking and carried him to the front of the jet, where they placed him on his back atop a special foam pillow. The plane made a total of eight parabolic dips, including two during which Hawking made two weightless flips like "a gold-medal gymnast," said Peter Diamandis, chairman of Zero Gravity Corp., the company that owns the jet. (AP Photo/Zero Gravity Corp./FILE) 
Stephen Hawking smiles during a press conference at the Kennedy Space Center landing strip in Cape Canaveral, Fla., on April 26, 2007. Hawking, author of the million-selling "A Brief History of Time," is writing a "middle-grade" novel. "George's Secret Key to the Universe," the story of a young man's computer-driven adventures, will be published this fall by Simon & Schuster, the company said Thursday, June 14, 2007. (AP Photo/Peter Cosgrove)
President Barack Obama applauds after presenting the 2009 Presidential Medal of Freedom to Stephen Hawking, the renown theoretical physicist and Cambridge University professor, during ceremonies at the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2009. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
Stephen Hawking waits as President Barack Obama prepares to give him a 2009 Medal of freedom during ceremonies in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Aug. 12, 2009. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking communicates with the media using a computer voice synthesizer during a press conference at the Kennedy Space Center landing strip in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Thursday, April 26, 2007. Hawking is scheduled to take a zero gravity flight from the Kennedy Space Center. (AP Photo/Peter Cosgrove)
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking is assisted off the tarmac at the Kennedy Space Center by his caregiver, Monica Guy, as he is applauded by members of the flight crew after completing a zero-gravity flight, Thursday, April 26, 2007, in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Free of his wheelchair and tethered only to heart rate and blood pressure monitors, Hawking on Thursday fulfilled a dream of floating weightless on a zero-gravity jet, a step he hopes leads to further space adventures. (AP Photo/Peter Cosgrove)
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking is assisted off the bus by caregiver Monica Guy as Chairman and CEO of Zero Gravity Peter Diamandis, second from left , waits on the tarmac at the Kennedy Space Center landing strip in Cape Canaveral, Fla. Thursday, April 26, 2007. A jet carrying Hawking later took off from the Kennedy Space Center on a flight to simulate zero gravity. (AP Photo/Peter Cosgrove)
Astrophysicist Stephen Hawking answers questions on a computer attached to his wheelchair, during an interview in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, April 24, 2007. Hawking, who has been confined to a wheelchair for most of his adult life, expects weightlessness to feel like "bliss" when he goes on a "zero-gravity" flight Thursday aboard a refitted jet. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Physicist Stephen Hawking answers questions during an interview in Orlando, Fla., Tuesday, April 24, 2007. Hawking will go on a weightless flight on Thursday, April 26, aboard a modified Boeing 727. (AP Photo/John Raoux)
Theoretical physicist Dr. Stephen Hawking talks before a group of disabled students in Seattle, July 1, 1993. Hawking, who has Lou Gehrig's disease and speaks with the aid of a synthesizer, is one of the early developers of the theory of black holes. He currently holds the Lucasian Professorship at Cambridge University, which was once held by Sir Isaac Newton. (AP Photo/Dave Wearver)
British astrophysicist Dr. Stephen Hawking, crippled with Lou Gehrig's disease, addresses a symposium on astrophysics with the aid of a computerized voice synthesizer in Chicago, Dec. 16, 1986. (AP Photo/David Banks)
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE
SHOW CAPTION +
HIDE CAPTION


LONDON (AP) - Physicist Stephen Hawking has turned his brilliant mind toward perhaps his toughest challenge yet - helping England win the World Cup.

Britain's most famous scientist, known for his theories on physics and the universe, has been commissioned by a betting company to analyze data from every World Cup that England qualified for since winning the tournament in 1966 in the hope of coming up with a winning formula.

His conclusion: Roy Hodgson's team has the best chance of winning in Brazil if it avoids high temperatures, adopts an aggressive 4-3-3 formation and wears red.

However, Hawking is not betting on England lifting the trophy. The scientist is backing the host to win the tournament, saying "you would be a fool to overlook Brazil. Hosts have won over 30 percent of the World Cups."

He used science to produce two formulas. The first one, taking into account a host of variables, describes the probability of England winning a match and the other addresses the country's penalty chances.

"Ever since the dawn of civilization, people have not been content to see events as unconnected and inexplicable," Hawking said at a press conference in London, speaking through a voice synthesizer from his wheelchair. "They have craved an understanding of the underlying order in the world. The World Cup is no different."

Hawking, who is almost completely paralyzed by motor neuron disease, said England should use its red uniform in Brazil to boost its chances and play in a 4-3-3 rather than in a 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," he said. "Likewise, 4-3-3 is more positive, so the team benefits for similar psychological reasons."

"And our chances of winning improve by a third when kicking off at three o'clock local time," Hawking said.

Turning to penalties, he said the key to success was velocity and that players needed at least a three-step run to the ball. But he added: "Velocity is nothing without placement. 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 percent more likely to score."

Hawking, who is known for his sense of humor, then said he found it more difficult to make sense of soccer than explain the mysteries of the universe.

"It is hugely complicated," he said. "In fact, compared to football I think quantum physics is relatively straightforward."

People are Reading