Guardian blogger Jonathan Wilson makes the argument for scaling the World Cup back to 16 teams.
His biggest complaint is the lack of matchups between the top teams in the tournament. My response would be, 1) top teams still rose the the top, with 3 of the final four being traditional powers Spain, Netherlands, and Germany, and 2) Maybe the so-called "top teams" weren't able to roll over the "minnows" because the quality of "minnows" in the tournament relative to the traditional powers has risen ever since they expanded the field. In fact, I would argue that some of the worst games were put in not by the "minnows," but rather teams like France and Italy. In fact, I would say that, in addition to those two, England, Brazil, and Portugal all put in disappointing efforts.