The draw for the 2022 World Cup group stages has been made – and now we really can’t wait!
It’s certainly going to be an unusual tournament with it taking place in November and December in Qatar.
But a World Cup is a World Cup and will always be the biggest spectacle in the sport.
While we’re still more than half a year away from the competition, the draw got us all excited.
So much so that we’ve decided to turn to Tiermaker to rank every nation’s chances of winning the whole thing.
As there are still a number of nations to be confirmed, we’ve only included countries that will DEFINITELY be in Qatar.
So, without further ado, here is our ranking from ‘Making up the numbers’ to ‘Eventual winners’. Remember, this is merely our opinion and, if you disagree, feel free to let us know in the Facebook comments section.
Making up the numbers
Sorry guys, but we think you’re all crashing out at the first possible stage – and probably finishing bottom of the group at that.
Hosts Qatar face Netherlands, Senegal and Ecuador and we simply can’t see how they’ll survive that.
Iran have got England, USA and either Scotland, Wales or Ukraine. While it’s not the toughest group, we don’t think Iran have got the quality to get out of it.
Saudi Arabia have got a hard group that contains Argentina, Mexico and Poland.
It’s great to see Canada in the World Cup but it’s likely they’ll only be playing three matches against Belgium, Morocco and Croatia.
Cameroon may be the strongest side in this tier but to have Brazil, Serbia and Switzerland in their group is a tough task.
Meanwhile, South Korea have got to get past Portugal, Ghana and Uruguay – something we can’t see happening.
Out in the group stages
These sides are far from no-hopers but we just feel there are two better teams in their group who are more likely to qualify.
We’re backing Senegal and Netherlands to progress in Group A over Ecuador – although it’s a difficult one to call.
USA are still awaiting one of their opponents but, whether it’s Scotland, Wales or Ukraine, we’d back them over the Americans in England’s group.
It appears to be a shootout between Poland and Mexico to qualify behind Argentina in Group C but we feel Robert Lewandowski’s side may miss out on the knockout rounds.
Tunisia are handy but they face France and Denmark in their group and are likely to finish third as they too await their fourth opponent – either Peru, Australia or UAE.
Japan are in the group of death with Spain and Germany and it would be a huge shock if they didn’t crash out after three games.
Morocco will fancy their chances against Canada but Belgium and Croatia are definitely favourites to progress in Group F.
Switzerland will look to finish second behind Brazil but Serbia and Cameroon are tough games and we think they may fall short.
Ghana will have to get the better of Luis Suarez and Uruguay in Group H.
Early knockout rounds
Six sides we think will qualify from their group but may well crash out in the last-16 – possibly the quarter-finals if they’re fortunate.
Senegal will likely play England in the last-16 if they were finish second in their group.
Meanwhile, Mexico are expected to meet France in the round of 16.
Denmark may have to get the better of Lionel Messi and Argentina if they wanted to reach the quarter-finals.
Croatia are likely to play either Spain or Germany if they qualify.
Serbia may fancy their chances a bit more than the other sides in this tier if they qualify from their group. Because if they finish second, it’s likely to be Portugal – a side they qualified ahead of.
But for Uruguay, it’s likely to be an all South-American clash with Brazil.
Now we’re talking.
Netherlands, Argentina and Portugal will all go into the World Cup with ambitions to win it. However, while we back them to reach the knockout rounds – most likely the quarter-finals – we can’t see them lifting the trophy come 18 December.
Have a chance
These five sides are among the favourites to win the World Cup and they will all fancy their chances. All should win their group and reach at least the quarter-finals with a bit of luck in the draw.
But there’s one side we feel will be just too good for them.
Brazil are the bookmakers’ favourites for the World Cup and there are plenty of reasons for that. In qualifying, they won 14 of their 17 matches in dominant style.
With Neymar and Vinicius Jr leading the line, Selecao will be fun to watch and we’re backing them.
So, there we have it.
We reckon Brazil will win their sixth World Cup – although there is plenty of competition from the likes of England, France, Spain, Germany and Belgium.
But then there’s also the Netherlands, Argentina and Portugal who could also go all the way.
The draw for the competition has really whet our appetite and we just can’t wait for it all to kick off now.
Bring on the greatest show on earth.