2022 FIFA World Cup

RustyBourneHorse

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With the FIFA World Cup starting next week, I think it's time to have a thread for our thoughts leading up to it and to discuss things during the matches. Of course, I'm going for England and the US. Here is my bracket for who I think advances to the Group 16:

Group A: Netherlands and Senegal (other nations in the group are Qatar and Ecuador) - nearly switched Senegal for Ecuador, but I feel confident about Senegal advancing and Mane is a world class- enough player to get them through.

Group B: England and USA (Other nations are Iran and Wales) - pretty easy this on paper. I don't think Iran advance, and Gareth Bale hasn't played a full match in a while, and he's Wales's best player, though Kieffer Moore is a good striker too (I'm a Bournemouth supporter haha).

Group C: Argentina and Mexico (other nations: Saudi Arabia and Poland) - pretty easy this too on paper.

Group D: France and Australia (other nations are Denmark and Tunisia) - France is winning this group. No question, they're the class of this group. Second place is tricky. I nearly put Denmark in because of Christian Erickson, but I think Australia are a consistent enough squad that they will finish second.

Group E (Group of Death): Germany and Japan (other nations Spain and Costa Rica) - providing an explanation here. Germany is the class of the group imo. I think they have one of the most complete teams this year. I have Japan going second because they always are sneaky good in WC play. They don't normally advance beyond the Quarter Finals, but you can usually count on them to finish 2nd and be in the Group 16.

Group F: Belgium and Croatia (other nations being Canada and Morocco) - Canada has done well to get to the WC, but I think Belgium and Croatia are better and advance.

I think the Semifinals will be Brazil, France, Germany, and Argentina with the Final being France and Germany. I think the result will be Germany 1-0.

How about for you all. Who do you think is winning the WC? Who are you cheering for? Who do you think is advancing from the groups?
 

csirl

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Good analysis, but do you think the hot weather is significant enough that it will bring some second tier nations into the last 16 ahead of establised European ones i.e. Mexico, Australia and Japan instead of Poland, Denmark and Spain?

There"s always an upset somewhere - and I think Mexico has the best chance, but Australia and Japan?
 

RustyBourneHorse

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Good analysis, but do you think the hot weather is significant enough that it will bring some second tier nations into the last 16 ahead of establised European ones i.e. Mexico, Australia and Japan instead of Poland, Denmark and Spain?

There"s always an upset somewhere - and I think Mexico has the best chance, but Australia and Japan?

Yes, I do. Even though it's going to be fall/winter, it's still going to b hot. So, I think warm weather countries should have an advantage. Australia does have a desert lol. They have a natural way to be ready. I included Japan because they usually do well in in the WC.
 

atlantacowboy

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I have Poland advancing over Mexico. Lewandowski is a force of nature and by far better than anyone on Mexico. And that's what the WC normally comes down to...... individual moments of brilliance.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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I have Poland advancing over Mexico. Lewandowski is a force of nature and by far better than anyone on Mexico. And that's what the WC normally comes down to...... individual moments of brilliance.

That he does. Lewandowski is one of the best players. Still, I'm not so sure about the rest of that squad. Though, I could see Mexico going out and Poland advancing. I think Poland gets eliminated in the Group 16 if they do advance.
 

atlantacowboy

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That he does. Lewandowski is one of the best players. Still, I'm not so sure about the rest of that squad. Though, I could see Mexico going out and Poland advancing. I think Poland gets eliminated in the Group 16 if they do advance.

They are just much bigger and more physical than Mexico. I think on average there is close to a 5 inch disparity in height. Huge advantage in the air. And Mexico doesn't have the skilled players on par with Spain or Brazil to overcome it.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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They are just much bigger and more physical than Mexico. I think on average there is close to a 5 inch disparity in height. Huge advantage in the air. And Mexico doesn't have the skilled players on par with Spain or Brazil to overcome it.

That I didn't know. Well, in that case, I think Group C will be Argentina and Poland going through. I think Argentina is always winning that group.
 

atlantacowboy

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RustyBourneHorse

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https://www.espn.com/soccer/fifa-wo...up-rank-the-50-best-footballers-of-qatar-2022

Not one American .... or Mexican. England and France are loaded. Portugal is loaded. I didn't realize they had so many players. I thought Lauturo Martinez was Mexican. lol

I agree, and Germany still has a very good squad. So, it'll be an interesting WC. I have Japan and Portugal as dark horses for this WC. Japan has an outstanding squad that usually does well in the WC, and Portugal is loaded, as you stated. I think Japan makes the Quarter Finals before being barely beaten by Argentina.
 

atlantacowboy

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I agree, and Germany still has a very good squad. So, it'll be an interesting WC. I have Japan and Portugal as dark horses for this WC. Japan has an outstanding squad that usually does well in the WC, and Portugal is loaded, as you stated. I think Japan makes the Quarter Finals before being barely beaten by Argentina.

Japan didn't have anyone in the top 50 either. I know nothing about them.

I'm going with the very controversial pick of france. Just sooo many players..... top 2 scorers in the world......great midfielders. I don't see how they lose.
 

jterrell

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https://www.espn.com/soccer/fifa-wo...up-rank-the-50-best-footballers-of-qatar-2022

Not one American .... or Mexican. England and France are loaded. Portugal is loaded. I didn't realize they had so many players. I thought Lauturo Martinez was Mexican. lol
That list is abject garbage.

Lukaku is so bad they want to ship him back to my team, Chelsea.
Messi has fallen off with age and is no where near top 10.
Same goes for Rolando who can't get minutes in Manchester.

England is talented but has had some tough injury luck.
France has had EVEN more bad injury luck.

Portugal does look good but Ronaldo may be their 5th best player right now.

Poland does not look at all but neither is Mexico which is why they are betting toss up for 2nd place in the group.

One thing to consider is the Europe based players are in the middle of a season and beat up already.
Will be interesting to see how that factors in but my guess it has killed England and France's chances of winning it all already.
 

jterrell

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Japan didn't have anyone in the top 50 either. I know nothing about them.

I'm going with the very controversial pick of france. Just sooo many players..... top 2 scorers in the world......great midfielders. I don't see how they lose.
Kante and Pogba were huge factors 4 years ago and are absent with injuries but France does have a lot of talent.
3-4 guys they are taking are also battling injury including the Keeper.
Injuries plus age tell me France will very much underwhelm this tourney.
Buit stranger things have happened.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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Japan didn't have anyone in the top 50 either. I know nothing about them.

I'm going with the very controversial pick of france. Just sooo many players..... top 2 scorers in the world......great midfielders. I don't see how they lose.

I have them losing in the Finals. Reason being is they rarely strung together two back to back great WCs.
 

Bigdog

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I think the sentimental feeling is having Messi win it all. Maybe Ronaldo vs Messi in the finals would be the networks dreams. With that being said I would consider England, France, Brazil, maybe Spain. Germany is always in the mix. You know the regulars. But I haven’t paid that much attention to the teams like the rest of you guys probably have. Life just gets in the way I guess but I am looking forward to the WC.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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I think the sentimental feeling is having Messi win it all. Maybe Ronaldo vs Messi in the finals would be the networks dreams. With that being said I would consider England, France, Brazil, maybe Spain. Germany is always in the mix. You know the regulars. But I haven’t paid that much attention to the teams like the rest of you guys probably have. Life just gets in the way I guess but I am looking forward to the WC.

Well, we will find out soon. The tourny starts Sunday.
 

joseephuss

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I have no confidence in Brazil. They have talent, but I don't think they have a great team.

I don't know what Germany is bringing this tournament. They were strong in qualifying. Have they improved over last years EURO squad?

Spain has been consistently playing well the last few years in EURO last year, Nations League and qualifying. It will really depend on who they match up with in the knockout rounds, but I don't think they have a consistent scoring threat to win it all.

England has talent. I think their manager isn't strong and is highly conservative.

Belgium golden generation may be a little bit too old this year.

This year seems wide open. Maybe it comes down to who has and maintains the healthiest squad.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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I have no confidence in Brazil. They have talent, but I don't think they have a great team.

I don't know what Germany is bringing this tournament. They were strong in qualifying. Have they improved over last years EURO squad?

Spain has been consistently playing well the last few years in EURO last year, Nations League and qualifying. It will really depend on who they match up with in the knockout rounds, but I don't think they have a consistent scoring threat to win it all.

England has talent. I think their manager isn't strong and is highly conservative.

Belgium golden generation may be a little bit too old this year.

This year seems wide open. Maybe it comes down to who has and maintains the healthiest squad.

Yeah, I don't rate Southgate, so I think England gets knocked out by the Quarter Finals. Brazil is every man for himself (particularly Neymar). I think Germany is quietly good, and I think they can go the distance. Spain is making a comeback, but I don't fancy them winning the tourny. Belgium's age will catch up to them I think. Japan is a side that I see as a team that could quietly reach the Semis, but didn't list them because it depends on how the stretch run plays out for them. I could see a Final of Portugal vs Argentina ironically with Portugal winning (oh the 442oons parodies that would ensue).
 

jterrell

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I have no confidence in Brazil. They have talent, but I don't think they have a great team.

I don't know what Germany is bringing this tournament. They were strong in qualifying. Have they improved over last years EURO squad?

Spain has been consistently playing well the last few years in EURO last year, Nations League and qualifying. It will really depend on who they match up with in the knockout rounds, but I don't think they have a consistent scoring threat to win it all.

England has talent. I think their manager isn't strong and is highly conservative.

Belgium golden generation may be a little bit too old this year.

This year seems wide open. Maybe it comes down to who has and maintains the healthiest squad.
Brazil easily have the most talent but they have underwhelmed for 20 years now.
Yet in a pretty wide-open tourney I'd ride them along ways as they have so much talent and so many playing at the worlds best clubs.
No side has as many players combined in EPL top 6, Real or Barca.
Its an embarrassment of riches that could only be matched by a healthy France. But France's engine is out with Kante.

Germany is always interesting because they develop so well and guys roar into great form the system.
I love Rudiger and could see them go far. I didn't pick them in my Final 2 but they would have been in my Final 4. The 4th is issue and why I only went with 2.
I'd struggle to pick a 4th side.
 

RustyBourneHorse

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Brazil easily have the most talent but they have underwhelmed for 20 years now.
Yet in a pretty wide-open tourney I'd ride them along ways as they have so much talent and so many playing at the worlds best clubs.
No side has as many players combined in EPL top 6, Real or Barca.
Its an embarrassment of riches that could only be matched by a healthy France. But France's engine is out with Kante.

Germany is always interesting because they develop so well and guys roar into great form the system.
I love Rudiger and could see them go far. I didn't pick them in my Final 2 but they would have been in my Final 4. The 4th is issue and why I only went with 2.
I'd struggle to pick a 4th side.

The trouble with Brazil is that they don't really play as a team. They'd be nearly invincible if they did. As for France, after reconsidering things, I think they get eliminated in the Semifinals because they rarely string two great World Cups together. I think Argentina is a team that could reach the Finals, and did so in 2014, so they're not far removed from that and have also got an excellent team. Oh, and, unlike Brazil, they do play as a team. So, I think they make the Finals.

As for who they'd play, all but a few people are sleeping on Portugal. I'm not picking them because of Ronaldo. I'm picking them because they have an outstanding squad with an outstanding Manager. Oh, and they've got a pretty easy group aside from South Korea (Uruguay are over the hill with their players, particularly Suarez, unless he bites someone). Fernando Santos, the Portuguese manager is a brilliant tactician, and they've got all sorts of talent in the PL. Aside from the obvious, they've got Bruno Fernandes (Man I) and Bernardo Silva (Man City), Ruben Neves (quietly good with Wolves), and Matheus Nunes (been good for Wolves) at midfield. They've got Jose Sá on the bench from Wolves. At left back, they've got Diego Dalot (one of the few defencive bright spots for Man U), João Palhinha from Fulham at left mid, Ruben Dias at centre from Man City, and João Cancelo from City at Right Back. They've also got others from excellent European leagues. Their number 1 keeper is Rui Patricio from Roma being managed by the Legendary Jose Mourinho. Their third choice keeper is Diogo Costa from Porto. Their vice captain is left back Pepe from Porto. They've got loads at PSG, and they've got striker options from RB Leipzig, Atletico Madrid, AC Milan, Benfica, and a buried depth chart option at Braga needless to say, they've got a lot more talent than people realise, and I think they'd be the other team in the Final.

So, after reconsidering, I think Portugal wins over Argentina in the Final 1-0 with Andre Silva from RB Leipzig smashing in the winning goal.
 
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