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You may remember that octopus named Paul whose accurate series of “predictions” during the 2010 World Cup about Germany’s matches and Spain’s victory shot him to worldwide fame.

Well move over, Paul, because you’ve got two new furry rivals! Stepping up to the challenge in 2014 are Munchkin kitties Kikunosuke and Rikimaru. Their owner had them “predict” which two teams from each of the initial groups A through H would proceed to the rest of the tournament. Japanese fans would be well-advised to listen to the cats, since Japan was picked to advance from group C.

Keep reading to find out which sixteen teams will advance, at least according to the cats!

When it comes time for a big sports tournament, many people like to pore over statistics and draft an ultimate bracket to predict the final outcome. But why put yourself through that hassle when you can just have your cats do it for you?

That’s what one Japanese man must have been thinking when he had his adorable pets attempt to foretell the future using two methods. The first was to dangle the four national flags of each group by string from a cat toy. Whichever two flags the cat swatted, chewed on, or took a particular interest in first became the predictions.

The second method involved tying the strings to Styrofoam peanuts, and having the cat chose two flags in a similar manner–by swatting, biting, or pushing them off the table. At one point, the owner switched to wrapping the strings tightly around the foam, perhaps in an effort to conceal the flags’ colors more. Whether the cats actually knew what they were doing or not, at least they got some extra play time out of it!

This first video shows the cats’ predictions for Groups A through D:

▼Japan’s advance is (kind of) assured!


The second video shows the picks for Groups E through H:

▼Poor Russia gets taken in the mouth in the screening for group H…


Here are the final results summarized for your convenience:

Group A: Brazil & Cameroon (predicted by Rikimaru)
Group B: Spain & Netherlands (predicted by Rikimaru)
Group C: Colombia & Japan (predicted by Kikunosuke)
Group D: Uruguay & Italy (predicted by Rikimaru)
Group E: Switzerland & Ecuador (predicted by Kikunosuke)
Group F: Argentina & Iran (predicted by Kikunosuke)
Group G: Portugal & Ghana (predicted by Rikimaru)
Group H: Russia & South Korea (predicted by Kikunosuke)

Unfortunately, the owner didn’t continue all the way to the final match-up, but he wrote that he might try again if the kitties aren’t already bored of predicting which teams will advance.

But wait–do we smell something fishy here? Paul the Octopus kept an impressively accurate track record, but we’re not so sure we have as much faith in the cats (adorable as they are). For one, Spain and Cameroon, which the cats predicted as staying in the game, have already been effectively knocked out of the Cup. You may have also noticed that Germany, one of the main contenders to win the whole shebang, was ruled out by the cats. But other favorites Brazil, Argentina and Portugal, which round out the top five teams in FIFA’s worldwide ranking, were all chosen to advance…

As far as group C goes, after a disappointing first-round loss to Côte d’Ivoire, subsequent tie with Greece, and final match to come against powerhouse Colombia, the future of Japan is looking a bit bleak…

It looks like we’ll just have to wait and see if our two feline friends hit the mark or were just coughing up a hairball!

Source: IT Media
Images: YouTube 1, 2