The 2022 World Cup is creeping closer and closer.
While the hype train has been chugging away ever since France lifted the trophy on a rainy night in Moscow four years ago, excitement for the tournament in Qatar has never been higher than it is now.
Not only are the qualifying matches starting to wrap up this week, but the upcoming group stage draw on Friday will mark the moment that fans truly begin to establish what the competition will look like.
Who will win the 2022 World Cup?
Besides, from the moment you know where the nation you’re supporting will be placed within the groups, you’ll be able to go down the hypothetical rabbit hole of how the rest of the tournament might play out.
There are no knockout round draws like the Champions League or third-place shenanigans like in the Euros, just the 32 strongest nations in the men’s game slugging it out to get their hands on that famous trophy.
So, seeing as the anticipation is ramping up to levels that we could’t have dreamt of just weeks ago, we couldn’t resist turning up the dial even more by taking a closer look at the leading contenders.
Sure, there might be five more qualifications slots to establish at the time of writing, but you’ll forgive us for thinking that most of the historic top performers have already booked their place in Qatar.
As much as we love the idea of New Zealand going all the way in November and December, it’s not outrageous to say that the usual suspects of Brazil, Germany, Argentina and so on stand a somewhat better chance.
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Every qualifier ranked by their likelihood of winning
So, why delay when you can get a jump on both the draw and the remaining qualifying games by checking out how the 27 teams that have made the cut so far are ranked by their likelihood of winning?
Go on, we know you’re interested, so we decided to have a look at the latest odds from Sky Bet – correct at the time of writing – to see how the nations that we know will be in Qatar are stacking up.
From South Korea and Tunisia’s outside chances of glory to Brazil and France’s tangible hopes of triumph, be sure to check out how the bookies rank the 27 qualified nations down below:
27. Saudi Arabia – 1,000-1
26. Iran – 750/1
25. South Korea – 500/1
=22. Tunisia – 250/1
=22. Japan – 250/1
=22. Canada – 250/1
=20. Ecuador – 200/1
=20. Cameroon – 200/1
=17. Qatar – 150/1
=17. Morocco – 150/1
=17. Ghana – 150/1
=14. Senegal – 80/1
=14. Poland – 80/1
=14. Serbia – 80/1
13. Switzerland – 66/1
12. Croatia – 50/1
11. Uruguay – 40/1
10. Denmark – 28/1
9. Netherlands – 16/1
8. Portugal – 12/1
7. Belgium – 11/1
6. Argentina – 10/1
5. Germany – 9/1
4. Spain – 8/1
3. England – 7/1
2. France – 6/1
- Brazil – 11/2
England as third-favourites
Did somebody say: it’s coming home?
Look, make no mistake, England are firmly in the hunt to bring the World Cup trophy home when they take to Qatari shores with top-class ballers like Harry Kane, Phil Foden and Raheem Sterling leading the charge.
However, it’s interesting to note that Brazil are the nation most fancied to conquer the globe despite the holders France, who are notoriously blessed with squad depth, breathing down their neck.
The likes of Spain and Germany queue up behind them as the hipster’s choices to go all the way, while Argentina shouldn’t be written off as they embark on their longest unbeaten run in decades.
Then, it’s interesting to note that Belgium aren’t all that fancied despite the world number ones arguably having their very last chance to secure major silverware with their ‘Golden Generation’.
And you can never write off the possibility that Portugal could cause a major upset with Cristiano Ronaldo almost certainly playing in his final ever World Cup.
So, sure, the chances of actual victory beyond that point becomes tenuous at best with Denmark, Croatia, Senegal and so forth having to produce something miraculous to lift the trophy above their heads.
But make no mistake that there are still plenty of top contenders and menacing teams in what promises to be the latest in a long line of thrilling World Cup tournaments. Who are you backing?