World Cup 2022

World Cup Qatar 2022

The biggest stage in world sport is set, as the 2022 World Cup will get underway in November. All of the best players in the world will be on show, as they represent their nation, and aim to win the most prestigious honour of them all-the World Cup.

 

This year’s competition gets underway on November 21st, with the World Cup final taking place on Sunday, December 18th. In total, 32 teams will be in contention to win the top prize, with two teams from each group making it through to the knockout rounds.

 

Introduction

The FIFA World Cup is the biggest football competition on the planet, and this year’s edition will be the 22nd that has taken place. It will be the first time that the World Cup has been played in an Arab country, and Qatar will be the 18th different country to stage the event. Brazil, Italy, France, Germany and Mexico have all hosted the event on two occasions, with Mexico set to become the first country to have hosting responsibility a third time in four years time.

 

The World Cup is played every four years, and that has been the case since the inaugural competition in 1930. There have been two exceptions to this rule, as the competition wasn’t played in either 1942 or 1946 due to the Second World War. Up to the 2018 World Cup, a total of 79 national sides have competed at the competition, with only eight teams in history winning the top prize.

 

The most successful nation in the history of the World Cup is Brazil, who have been crowned world champions on five occasions. Italy and Germany are the most successful European nations, with both winning four titles. Meanwhile, France, Argentina and Uruguay have all won the World Cup on two occasions. England and Spain are the only other two countries to have won the World Cup, with both having claimed success just once.

Biggest Stars Embark On Qatar

The 2022 World Cup is significant for a number of reasons; most notably that it will be the first to be held in the Arab world. Furthermore, it will only be the second time that the competition will be held in Asia; following the 2002 World Cup which was staged in South Korea and Mexico. This year’s World Cup is the final edition of the competition before the tournament increases in size to 48 teams for the 2026 World Cup in the USA, Canada and Mexico.

 

Another significant factor surrounding the 2022 World Cup is that it will be the first played in the winter. Questions were raised when Qatar was awarded the competition, as the World Cup would be unplayable in the middle of the Qatari summer. However, FIFA responded to that by moving it to November and announcing that it will be played over a condensed period of 28 days.

 

The build-up to the start of the 2022 World Cup has been one of the most controversial in history. Accusations of corruption have been widespread regarding how the country was able to win the bid. FIFA announced that their internal investigation had cleared Qatar of all wrong doing, before Michael Garcia’s report found that not to be too. Criminal cases were then brought forward against Sepp Blatter surrounding the 2018 and 2022 World Cup bids.

 

As well as unearthing corruption within FIFA, the Qatari World Cup bid was also widely condemned by Amnesty International and leading LGBTQ+ groups that felt that the poor human rights record in the country and the number of deaths from migrant workers ensured that the competition shouldn’t go ahead.

 

However, FIFA has continued to plan ahead for the Qatar World Cup without addressing concerns that fans may have had. The draw for the group stages of the 2022 World Cup were made in March, and the eight groups can be found below.

Group A

Group B

Group C

Group D

Group E

Group F

Group G

Group H

Qatar England Argentina France Spain Belgium Brazil Portugal
Ecuador Iran Saudi Arabia AFC-CONMEBOL Winners CONCACAF-OFC Winners Canada Serbia Ghana
Senegal USA Mexico Denmark Germany Morocco Switzerland Uruguay
Netherlands UEFA Path A Poland Tunisia Japan Croatia Cameroon South Korea

 

Once the group stages have been concluded, the top two teams from each of the groups will progress through to the knockout stages. The round of 16 will pit group winners against the sides that finished second in different groups. They get underway on December 3rd, beginning with the winners of Group A taking on the runners-up in Group B.

 

The winners from the respective ties in the round of 16 will then progress through to the quarterfinals. These ties will be played on the 9th and 10th December, before the winners progress into the semi-finals, which are played on 13th December and 14th December. The final two teams left standing will then play in the World Cup final at Lusail Stadium on 18th December, with the third place play-off taking place a day earlier.

 

A number of excellent stadiums have been constructed for the World Cup in 2022, with Lusail Stadium hosting the final, as well as important fixtures at the semi-final and quarterfinal stage. The full list of stadiums that will be used in Qatar can be found below:

 

  • Lusail Iconic Stadium
  • Al Bayt Stadium
  • Stadium 974
  • Al Thumana Stadium
  • Education City Stadium
  • Ahmad bin Ali Stadium
  • Khalifa International Stadium
  • Al Janoub Stadium

What Happened In 2018 World Cup

The last edition of the World Cup was staged in Russia four years ago. It was widely regarded as one of the best editions of the competition in decades, while it was also the most expensive World Cup to date, costing around $14.2 billion. The group stage was full of memorable moments, with Germany’s shock departure in the group stage sending shockwaves around the world.

 

It was the first time that the Germans had been eliminated at that stage since the 1938 edition, and the first time that they exited at the opening hurdle since the change in format in 1950. The fall of the reigning world champions let everyone believe that it could be their year to win the biggest prize of all.

 

There was success for the hosts, as Russia managed to finish second in Group A after wins against Saudi Arabia and Egypt. Their success story would continue into the round of 16, as they famously knocked out 2010 world champions Spain on penalties. However, their journey would end by the same method in the following round as they were eliminated by Croatia.

 

Spain and Portugal were both drawn in the same group, and played out a scintillating opening game in Group B, as a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick stole the show in a 3-3 draw. However, both nations would succumb to early eliminations, with Portugal being knocked out by Uruguay in the round of 16.

 

Argentina narrowly avoided an early exit in Group D, as they finished just above Nigeria courtesy of a late winner by Marcos Rojo. However, their defensive issues were clear for all to see, and they soon come undone against France in the round of 16 in a World Cup classic, with the future winners coming out with a 4-3 success.

 

Brazil once again started among the favourites to win the 2018 World Cup, but started slow with a 1-1 draw against Switzerland. They managed to top the group, but there were serious doubts whether they had the ability to win the competition. The Brazilians managed to reach the quarterfinals, before being eliminated by Belgium.

 

Sweden topped Germany’s group, with Mexico finishing in second. The latter exited the competition in the round of 16 following defeat against Brazil. Meanwhile, Sweden made it through to the quarterfinals but were eventually outclassed by an England side growing in confidence.

 

Belgium and England were both involved in Group G, with Belgium topping the group after beating the Three Lions in the final group game. However, both knew that the tournament would be decided after this stage. Belgium emerged as a hot favourite to win the competition with a dramatic 3-2 win over Japan in the round of 16, before dispatching Brazil in the quarterfinal stage. However, their journey came to an end at the hands of France in the semi-finals, but they could at least celebrate finishing third after beating England 2-0 in the playoff.

 

The 2018 World Cup promised so much for the Three Lions, as there was a growing belief that a second success could be added. History was made in the round of 16, as England won their first-ever World Cup penalty shootout against Colombia, before they eased through past Sweden with a dominant win. However, nerves set in during their semi-final against Croatia, and eventually succumbed to the Croats in extra-time resulting in yet more heartbreak.

 

Croatia were a standout side in the group stages, and easily topped a Group D which looked pretty testing on paper. They rode their luck in both the round of 16 and quarterfinals with penalty shoot out victories, before scoring late in the semi-finals to break England hearts.

 

France would be the side that they came up against in the final of the showpiece event, as the French beat every side put in front of them in the knockout rounds. After beating Argentina in a classic, they showed their defensive quality and counter-attacking brilliance in a 2-0 win against Uruguay. Their most testing fixture came in the semi-final against Belgium, but a Samuel Umtiti goal was enough to reach the final.

 

The 2018 World Cup final was a thrilling game, as it produced the most goals in a final since the 1966 showpiece game. The game turned on a contentious penalty decision, which allowed Antoine Griezmann to restore France’s lead late in the first half. Paul Pogba and Kylian Mbappe added goals in the second period before Mario Mandzukic made history by becoming the first player to score both an own goal and a goal in a World Cup final. However, few would argue that France were deserving winners overall.

Harry Kane was awarded the golden boot after netting six times for England, while the Best player award was handed to Luka Modric, who was sensational throughout the competition. The individual awards were rounded off by Kylian Mbappe and Thibaut Courtois, who won the Best Young Player and Best Goalkeeper awards, respectively.

World Cup Stats & Records

The World Cup is one of the most historic sporting competitions in the world. Throughout the competition’s history, there have been a magnitude of interesting records that have been set, and you can learn more about some of the interesting stats and records below.

 

  • Miroslav Klose holds the record for most goals scored at the World Cup (16)
  • Brazil have scored the most goals in the history of the World Cup (229). However, they have scored just three more than Germany.
  • Despite Brazil having won the most titles, Germany have recorded the most second, third and fourth place finishes in World Cup history.
  • Brazil hold the esteemed honour of competing at the most World Cups, while they have reached the round of 16 in every edition.
  • England have been eliminated at the quarterfinal stage most frequently (8), while Mexico have exited at the round of 16 the most (14).
  • Italy and Brazil are the only two nations to have successfully defended the World Cup.
  • Italy are also the holder of the record for longest time as world champions, as they were World Cup holders for 16 years between 1934 and 1950.
  • Pele holds the record for the player to have won the most World Cups, while Cafu holds the record for the most appearances in World Cup finals.
  • Paulo Madini has played more minutes at the World Cup than any other player (2,217)
  • The 2000th goal in World Cup history was scored by Marcus Allback for Sweden against England in 2006.
  • Germany have won the most penalty shootouts in World Cup history, while England have lost the most.

Current World Cup 2022 Odds

The World Cup 2022 betting markets have been open since the end of the 2018 World Cup. The latest odds for the competition this year can be seen below, as Brazil lead the way as 9/2 favourites ahead of France and England.

Brazil 9/2
France 11/2
England 6/1
Spain 8/1
Argentina 9/1
Germany 10/1
Netherlands 11/1
Belgium 11/1
Portugal 12/1
Denmark 30/1
Croatia 50/1
Uruguay 50/1
Senegal 80/1
Switzerland 80/1
Poland 100/1
Serbia 100/1
Mexico 100/1
USA 100/1
Ecuador 125/1
Canada 200/1
Morocco 200/1
Wales 250/1
South Korea 250/1
Cameroon 250/1
Japan 250/1
Qatar 250/1
Peru 250/1
Ghana 250/1
Australia 375/1
Ukraine 375/1
Scotland 375/1
Tunisia 375/1
Saudi Arabia 500/1
Iran 500/1
New Zealand 1000/1
Costa Rica 1000/1
United Arab Emirates 1500/1