Surprise Countries That Could Win the 2022 FIFA World Cup
Although a new football season is now in full swing, its momentum will soon be brought to a shuddering halt. The reason for the Premier League’s enforced hiatus is due to the first-ever winter World Cup. With such a prospect now only two months away, preparations for the tournament are reaching their conclusion.
While once they do conclude, it means 32 nations will once again compete for football’s greatest prize. With global supremacy being up for grabs, the usual heavyweight contenders will fancy their chances of outright success.
Who will win the 2022 World Cup?
With only eight nations reaching the holy grail and managing to snare a World Cup for themselves, this competition could be considered a closed shop. However, this could be the year in which the shop opens itself up to new customers.
Due to a winter World Cup acting as the great unknown, the formbook might just end up being thrown out of the window. Although the likes of Brazil, England and France are the favourites to lift the trophy, a winner from this trio is not a guarantee either.
The same could also be said about the trio of nations that find themselves next in the list of outright odds. Argentina, Spain and Germany have all conquered the football world before, they might not be so lucky in 2022.
Then again, it is not just luck that is going to play a part in deciding who wins the final. The potential for a surprise winner being as high as it has ever been, we are going to focus on the nations that are yet to a win a World Cup for themselves.
Can Portugal Win The World Cup?
Although the superpowers of Cristiano Ronaldo now seem to be fading at club level, the same cannot be said on the international stage. With the Manchester United star having scored 117 goals for Portugal, his tally is also a current world record.
The 37-year-old will now look to convert a world record into a World Cup. Although Ronaldo has a peak physique, this is likely to be his final ever appearance at FIFA’s biggest competition.
The former Real Madrid star will be tasked with leading not only his teammates but a whole nation to success. With Portugal winning the European Championships in 2016, they have recent experience of reaching the top step of tournament football.
Portugal are currently joint-seventh favourites at the time of writing. They can be considered to be the best of the rest and when you look at the players that will be supporting Cristiano Ronaldo, they could even be part of the best.
With a rather favourable group draw, it means that Portugal may not meet a true powerhouse until the last eight of the tournament. If they get to this stage, their momentum may still take them a lot further.
Are The Netherlands The Best National Team Never To Have Won The World Cup?
The Netherlands have finished as World Cup runners-up on three separate occasions. There is a sense of always the bridesmaid and never the bride when it comes to the Oranje. If manager Louis Van Gaal has anything to do with it, he will hope that 2022 is the year his side finally earn a football marriage.
Like Portugal, the Dutch find themselves as joint-seventh favourites before a ball has been kicked. Their group stage being one that can only be considered as favourable, failure to make the Round of 16 would be considered a national scandal.
Thankfully, this Netherlands side has found its groove once again. After missing out on qualification for the finals in Russia four years ago, the sight of an orange army in the stands is going to be a rather welcome one.
The tournament will also be welcoming of the likes of Virgil van Dijk and Memphis Depay to the Middle East. The captain and current top scorer are vital to any chance of outright success. Both players must make sure to stay fit before the World Cup gets underway in November.
A tightrope that all the very best will be having to walk and if any player is unfortunate enough to pick up a knock in the weeks leading up to the festivities, they may face a race against time when it comes to regaining full fitness.
Best Of The Rest Around The World
If Portugal or the Netherlands were to win the 2022 edition of the World Cup, it would be a surprise. But perhaps not the biggest one either and with Asia or Africa yet to have a representative in the winner’s enclosure, they may soon deliver the biggest shock of all.
As mentioned before, the weather has the potential to cause mayhem in Qatar. Qatar themselves are far down the list when it comes to World Cup winning hopefuls. However, you should never underestimate a home nation.
Admittedly, no host nation has managed to win the World Cup since France managed this 1998. However, if there was ever a time for this streak to end, then surely it is during the first ever winter World Cup.
While due to the oppressive heat that we are all anticipating, it may also boost the chances of the African nations that have qualified. Senegal find themselves in Group A along with Qatar, and they look like a team that could be feared.
Especially when you consider Sadio Mane will be spearheading their attack. The Bayern Munich forward has continiued his scoring form since leaving Liverpool. His goals could help to send Senegal into the Round 16 and maybe much further.
Lets not forget the United States and Canada either. The two North American nations are building respective squads that have plenty of experience in European club football. The Concacaf confederation pair cannot be overlooked either.
Which is why the next edition of the FIFA World Cup may end up being the most fascinating of all. There have been continual questions regarding the host of this years tournament. These questions will soon be answered in a rather emphatic way.
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