/cgl/ v /f/
UselessNepgear: After the legendary 7-3 to /adv/, the wildcard of group A faces /f/, which have been quite solid in the group stage, despite losing to /sp/ with a cheeky 90+ goal.
Will Dramu lead her team once again to victory with the aid of unconventional tacticool genius Fang? Or will they choke horribly against inifinite Nipaa and WHERE DA HOOD AT?
I think that /f/ has the quality and the men ahead to beat /cgl/'s defense formation, however they must be aware of J Nig and Yaya's Tatas incursions, and Dramu's finishing.
GaymanAlpha: /cgl/ has a reputation of causing havoc and mayhem in the cup, first with >molly, the femme fatale manager that failed to show up for the Autumn 2012 Babby Cup, then spooking up Summer 2013 with broken chants of "Seagulls! Seagulls!", all leading to a rigged cosplay team beating their way across their group, shaming /pol/, relegating [s4s], and being promoted to the Elite Cup.
With manager Fang at the helm, the team has continued its reputation of shaking up the competition and only letting Dramu score, drawing their opening match against cup powerhouse /a/ and stomping all over /cm/ and /adv/. The latter in particular was a spectacular showing of Fang's ability to adapt his tactics on the fly to take a 2-0 loss and turn it into a 7-3 thriller.
At the same time, /f/ has built their own success story in recent competitions. Forced out of Summer thanks to particular circumstances, Old Man Sou, one of the longest-serving managers in the entire league, brought his low-scoring, oft-winning team to the Top 8 in Autumn, and continued the march through his group, despite it being a bit on the easy side with /g/ and /lgbt/ failing to impress. /f/ does not score often in their games, relying more on solid defense to maintain their one-goal leads, and while it's carried them this far, one-man-army teams like /cgl/ have proven the opposite is equally effective. It's hard to call, but I'd wager that Dramu will be able to find a hole or two here to put /cgl/ ahead to the Top 8. If /f/ advances, I see their run ending at /h/ or /mu/, while /cgl/ certainly has all cylinders running, enough to push it to the Semi-Finals.
/h/ v /mu/
UselessNepgear: After being one of the main favourites before the cup, the lackluster performance of /h/ pits them against the summer runner-up, /mu/, whose power are now in doubt after >MUH HEIGHT ABUSE disappeared.
/mu/ is a very offense oriented team, having a 4-men diamond up front, with MC Ride leading it. Bitten's teams on the other hand have been always superior in defense and how they'll cope with /mu/'s onslaught remains to be seen. Besides, Bitten is always a wildcard in tactics and his players of choice and presets prove it, being able to field almost any formation.
The outcome of this match will depend pretty much on how /h/'s defense holds up. If they are capable of doing so and getting balls to Titty Monster or Asuka, /h/ will take it, but if they fail... they better be prepared to be #noided.
GaymanAlpha: /h/ came out of a rough group; a team that showed a promising performance up to Summer's Ro16, a Top 8 Autumn finisher with a quirky tactic that didn't entirely pay off in the big leagues, and the Autumn 2013 champion. Regardless, they finished with 4 points just like the rest of the group, one GD ahead of said champion. Their manager Bittenfeld has a habit of doing quite the bit of drunk managing, and it appears to always work for him and his girls. Previous experience as /a/ manager runs through his tactics and absurd demands of the commissioner, and while the initial idea of /h/ being a favorite to take the entire Winter Cup seem a bit more far-fetched, /h/ has all the strength to Fly Away to the finals, as long as if they can get past their old foe.
This match is a rematch of the Knockout opener that saw /h/ return to the sidelines, while the /mu/tants stormed their way to the Finals. Summer manager Snorlax is taking his rest, allowing Feedback to prove his mettle against a slew of newcomers and one surprise survivor in the Group Stage. Finishing with two solid wins and the Summer Silver Medal clenched tightly, one of the three remaining "Original 16 Elite" has the attacking strength to make their way back to the top and prove that you don't need a team resembling the New York skyline to love Jesus Christ. /h/ comes back with a lot more muscle in its punch and Pomf in its defense, but if it doesn't go to penalties, I'd wager /mu/ to stick with tradition, take it slow, and walk to the Top 8 comfortably.
/asp/ v /v/
UselessNepgear: The /asp/ies, being one of the underdogs of the cup, have been completely dominating in the so-called group of death, beating the likes of /mlp/ and /s/ in the way, and only giving away points against /m/ in
a meaningless match. They face /v/, 4th in summer and still going strong, despite performing poorly in the friendlies.
/asp/, like /mu/, is a offense oriented team with American Dragon and CENAWINSLOL having most of the protagonism. /v/ is more balanced, having a strong defense led by Protoman and a strong striker team led by Gabe Newell, although the supporting 77s PC Master Race and Console Peasant got quite a lot of protagonism. It was proven against /c/ that the christmas tree formation is as strong as ever, and they'll prove to be a worthy opposition to /asp/.
Under my point of view, this match could go anywhere. I predict a goal fest since both teams have a very strong offense.
GaymanAlpha: Isn't this a surprise? Strongmen of the Fetus and mortal enemy of /c/, /asp/ took the place of /pol/ after a bit of manager laziness and failed mindgames, with many questioning this not-qualified team's quality (myself included). However, the vocal Spotmonkey and his tactical cohort Groudon tested their little hearts out in the break between Autumn and Winter, sure that one team would screw up, that one team would give them the chance. With cries of YES YES YES raging throughout the stadium, that chance was given, and did /asp/ ever capitalize on it. Trouncing top-ranked /mlp/ and the team that gave /pol/ a run for its money, /s/, the wrastlers found their way to the knockouts riding on the back of the American Dragon. Their defense isn't the most solid; most of the time relying on their astounding starting keeper Black Ref to bail them out, but they can score with the best of them. This team isn't supposed to be here, and I was so ready to see them tumble right back down to Spring. Bravo /asp/, you've won a fan this season.
Despite the hype about the little buggers the w/asp/s are, /v/ is coming with a lot more meat on its bones. Trouncing their group (save some spooky skeletons) and proving that you cannot stop a Gaben, the 4th-place Summer finisher has kept their winning tactics and formations strong. The one-two combo of Reggie and Gabe proves to be a terrifying force on the football field, and no own goals are in sight. As one of the only teams that did exceptional in PES 13 to continue their performance in the new game, /v/ are looking as one of the favorites to take the entire cup. The Group E "Group of Death" might have been a little underwhelming with a tactically-impaired /m/ and only the heart-of-the-sport pushing mulp forward, leaving /asp/'s power a bit inflated. I'm giving this one to /v/; they're simply looking magnificent this cup and gave strong-team /x/ a run for their money, of whom also joins them in the Ro16.
/trv/ v /soc/
UselessNepgear: After demolishing their group, /trv/ faces one of the former major powers, /soc/, who very barely got through.
/trv/'s attack has been unstoppable so far, with Couchsurfer Rapist being a prime candidate for golden boot after 6 goals in 3 matches, including a double bracer. Despite looking frail in defense at a first glance, they only conceded 3 goals, despite facing summer champions /wg/ and former elite /ck/. /soc/ on the other hand, is still a powerhouse when left to their desires, as their victory 4-2 against /hr/ showed. However, with a 5-5 balance in goals, their offense is not the best in the tournament, and it could be troublesome against /trv/'s relentless attack.
I believe /trv/ will take this without problem, they have more than enough quality and offensive power to shoot down /soc/.
/sp/ v /a/
UselessNepgear: The most hyped match of the RO16 and probably of the cup, these two old teams hasn't seen each other in more than 2 years, and many things have changed since then. One thing hasn't: their rivalry. /sp/, after their defensive gameplay let them top their group with 9 points, receives /a/, who despite having a group easy to sweep a priori, found themselves in a bit of trouble to go through.
/sp/ as everyone know, love to play defensive counter-attacking football, denying their rivals from scoring and, with the aid of USA USA USA, >moyes and, of course, the veteran superstar Messi, beating them into submission. However, in their last match against /g/ they showed that their defense could be overrun, with their new goalkeeper Clark the Cub being the hero of the match. /a/ on the other hand is pretty balanced, with a solid defense and a strong attack with Cowboy Bebop and Bert is a Titan being their flagships.
If /a/ can't find a way to best /sp/'s defensive play, they'll have lots of trouble to defeat them, and /sp/'s counterattacks will tear them to shreds. However, if /a/ can somehow beat their defenders, they'll bring a world of pain to the /sp/artans. Hopefully it'll live up to the hype and not be a 0-0 borefest
/gif/ v /toy/
UselessNepgear: After qualifying only because of >/pol/, underdogs /gif/ have done a very solid performance, beating /mu/ and topping their group. Pretty much the opposite of /toy/, who after winning Autumn, found themselves almost relegated, only going through because of goals for.
/gif/ plays very compactly, with Source and Sauce being their main source (no pun intended) of goals, with their supporting 77 AMFs getting there as well sometimes. Despite having to play with the same tactics as in the friendlies and playing with rigged stats (77 defense prowess), they haven't conceded a single goal in the group stage. /toy/ on the other hand, changed the "Woody-Madoka" one-two for a more winged-play, giving silver players Matty and Optimus Prime the chance to shine. Maybe over-depending on them (as was seen against /co/). However, Madoka stepped up in the decisive match scoring a bracer, so they are still a danger.
I think /gif/ can take this. They have been performing really solidly and /toy/ is not the same as in previous cups, their defense being worse and their attack not as incisive.
/x/ v /mlp/
UselessNepgear: /x/ swope their group, only conceding points against /v/, with convincing wins against both /c/ and /int/. Having only conceded twice and only to /v/, their defense is one of the strongest of the tournament, with Pyramid Head and X-Tan being once again their spearheads. /mlp/ after losing horribly to /asp/, was able to barely scrap through the group stage with a 90+ cheeky goal by >rape.
Even though looking strong in attack, /x/ has the quality to best /mlp/, as long as they are able to keep the pair Alicorn Twilight->rape in check.
/an/ v /wg/
UselessNepgear: One of the underdogs of the cup (no pun intended), /an/ aced through their group, getting 9 points against elite teams such as /soc/ and /b/ and strong contenders /hr/. /wg/'s prowess is beyond question however, being the title holders and making it through despite being barely able to beat /ck/ and being blown out by /trv/.
/an/ has a very strong defense, only conceding against /hr/, and having a decisive attack capable of getting counterattacking goals, with both golds and silvers having at least one goal. On the other hand /wg/ can be defined as a glass cannon: they have a very strong attack, with veteran high scorer Cunt Destroyer and Spacecat up front. However, their defense have been very sub-par, conceding a total of 6 goals, the highest amount of all the teams in the RO16, tied with /cgl/.
Like with /h/, this match will be decided by /an/'s defensive prowess and their ability to stop /wg/'s star players and taking advantage of /wg/'s holes in defense.
In other news; Grand Commissioner DrBorisG has decided to rid the league of the Qualifiers and make the Babby Cup into a mass affair; making groups as large as they need to be for however many teams sign up. This an attempt to clean up the cup of teams being held up by one manager that aren't really into the cup. We may see some teams say goodbye, we may see an exhibition match or two between /biz/ and another team. Whatever it is, we'll see some quality divegrass.
Also in every fucking test I'm in a hard group. Kill me.