Like the European soccer teams above, the Joe Gibbs Racing trio is are in World Cup trouble. Kenseth is already out, while Hamlin and Busch are longshots to make it in.
All three drivers are 0-2, but Busch could sneak in by beating Jamie McMurray by more than 21 spots at Kentucky and with a Kevin Harvick win over Casey Mears. It's not impossible, but it's not likely. Same goes for Hamlin. He'd have to beat Marcos Ambrose by 33 spots at Kentucky while Greg Biffle beats Cole Whitt.
The drivers through two rounds guaranteed to make the knockout round are Jimmie Johnson (Group A), Kevin Harvick (Group B), Dale Earnhardt Jr. (Group C), Tony Stewart (Group D), Joey Logano (Group D), Greg Biffle (Group F), Jeff Gordon (Group H) and Kyle Larson.
The drivers already eliminated are Aric Almirola (Group A), Busch (Group B), Kenseth (Group D), Justin Allgaier (Group D), A.J. Allmendinger (Group H) and Ricky Stenhouse Jr. (Group H).
The group in the biggest state of flux? That's our now-official Group of Death Group E, which has all drivers at 1-1 and within 15 positions of each other on finish differential.
Here are the final round matchups. The standings are embedded in the post below
Group A: Jimmie Johnson vs. Aric Almirola, Brian Vickers vs. Danica Patrick
Group B: Kyle Busch vs. Jamie McMurray, Kevin Harvick vs. Casey Mears
Group C: Dale Earnhardt Jr. vis Michael Annett, Austin Dillon vs. Martin Truex Jr.
Group D: Matt Kenseth vs. Justin Allgaier, Joey Logano vs. Tony Stewart
Group E: Brad Keselowski vs. Clint Bowyer, Paul Menard vs. Kurt Busch
Group F: Denny Hamlin vs. Marcos Ambrose, Greg Biffle vs. Cole Whitt
Group G: Carl Edwards vs. Kasey Kahne, Ryan Newman vs. David Gilliland
Group H: Jeff Gordon vs. Kyle Larson, A.J. Allmendinger vs. Ricky Stenhouse Jr.
*Earlier, we said Hamlin was eliminated from the competition. We were incorrect. Chalk that up to FIFA corruption.
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