World Cup – Group C preview

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Football’s largest worldwide event returns this week as a result of the 2022 FIFA World Cup will get underway in Qatar.

Ahead of the match we’ve previewed each of the competing sides, listed beneath are the nations in Group C – Argentina, Poland, Mexico and Saudi Arabia.

Argentina

  • FIFA Ranking: 3
  • Previous most interesting: Winners (1978, 1986)
  • Manager: Lionel Scaloni
  • Key participant: Lionel Messi
  • Odds to be topped champions: 11/2

Lionel Messi will head into his remaining World Cup with a approach of actual optimism, with Argentina quietly assured of success in Qatar.

Lionel Scaloni has turned the South Americans proper right into a profitable machine all through the earlier three years and La Albiceleste arrive on the World Cup unbeaten given that 2019 Copa America semi-finals. That 35-game run is solely two in want of the worldwide report set by Italy between 2018 and 2021, with the Argentines every calm and guaranteed.

Scaloni’s success has included getting the right from Messi, who has shedded a burden of earlier worldwide failures with a triumph on the Copa America in 2021 – the nation’s first worldwide title in 28 years. That victory acquired right here after beating good rivals Brazil on the Maracanã and Argentina proved capable of beating top-level European opponents with a thrashing of Italy throughout the “Finalissima” by means of the summer season.

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Messi, as ever, holds the necessary factor nonetheless Scaloni has succeeded the place earlier coaches have failed in really bringing the right from the seven-time Ballon d’Or winner in an Argentina shirt. He has ten targets in merely six appearances this calendar 12 months and has been superb at membership diploma for PSG, recording 25 intention involvements in merely 18 appearances.

A World Cup success may be the crowning glory on an iconic career.

Poland

  • FIFA Ranking: 26
  • Previous most interesting: Third Place (1974, 1982)
  • Manager: Czesław Michniewicz
  • Key participant: Robert Lewandowski
  • Odds to be topped champions: 150/1

Poland have ambitions of reaching the World Cup’s knockout rounds for the first time since 1986. In three visits to the finals since, Poland have acquired merely three video video games.

However, Czesław Michniewicz’s are armed with definitely one in every of world soccer’s most attention-grabbing in Robert Lewandowski. and the Barcelona forward will want to make an have an effect on in Qatar. He failed to achieve as Poland accomplished bottom of a comparatively modest group in Russia 4 years prior to now and at 34 this might probably be his last chance to shine at a World Cup.

Lewandowski leads La Liga’s intention charts this season and has a report 76 targets for the nationwide aspect. Only Harry Kane and Memphis Depay outscored Lewandowski in Europe’s qualification part, as Poland accomplished as runners-up to England sooner than navigating a play-off in the direction of Sweden.

While undoubtedly the star of the aspect, Lewandowski has high-quality help throughout the type of Napoli midfielder Piotr Zieliński. The latter has been on the coronary coronary heart of a Napoli employees who’re amongst Europe’s most fulfilling sides at present. Sebastian Szymański – fantastic to this point this season at Feyenoord – is one to watch.

Mexico

  • FIFA Ranking: 13
  • Previous most interesting: Quarter-finals (1970, 1986)
  • Manager: Gerardo Martino
  • Key participant: Edson Alvarez
  • Odds to be topped champions: 150/1

Can Mexico break the curse?

El Tri boast one of many very important excellent data in World Cup historic previous, having reached the ultimate 16 in seven straight tournaments with out ever progressing further. The Mexicans have reached the first knockout spherical at every World Cup since 1994, nonetheless each time have fell on the fourth sport hurdle.

There will probably be some who will probably be completely happy merely to see the current employees attain that stage, with points heading into Qatar. Mexico’s qualification advertising marketing campaign was uninspiring as Martino’s aspect accomplished behind Canada, failing to beat each the Canadians or the United States.

Mexico moreover lack a reliable goalscorer with Raul Jimenez having not been the an identical participant since returning from a career-threatening head hurt at Wolves. The 31-year-old has scored merely six targets in 38 league appearances given that start of ultimate season.

Much might hinge on the performances of Hirving ‘Chucky’ Lozano, who has thrived as part of Napoli’s vibrant aspect this season, whereas Ajax midfielder Edson Alvarez – a summer season swap aim for Chelsea – will anchor the Mexican’s midfield.

Veteran duo Andrés Guardado and Guillermo Ochoa are extraordinarily set to operate at a fifth World Cup. Before Qatar, solely 4 avid gamers – Antonio Carbajal, Gianluigi Buffon, Rafa Marquez and Lothar Matthaus – had ever achieved that feat.

Saudi Arabia

  • FIFA Ranking: 51
  • Previous most interesting: Round of 16 (1994)
  • Manager: Herve Renard
  • Key participant: Salem Al-Dawsari
  • Odds to be topped champions: 750/1

Saudi Arabia are the second-lowest-ranked employees travelling to Qatar this winter, nonetheless Herve Renard’s employees will accomplish that with optimism after a strong qualification advertising marketing campaign.

The Green Falcons topped a gaggle containing Japan and Australia to attain the finals, shedding merely as quickly as from their 18 fixtures all through the two qualification phases.

Renard has experience of success at foremost tournaments, having grow to be the first coach to information two completely totally different nations to the Africa Cup of Nations. He led Zambia to a shock success in 2012, sooner than foremost Ivory Coast to the title in 2015.

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He will function to information a youthful squad into the World Cup’s knockout rounds, with Saudi Arabia having progressed from the group merely as quickly as in 5 makes an try. Their success might depend upon the well being of Salem Al-Dawsari as he recovers from appendix surgical process. The winger was named as a result of the AFC Champions League’s Most Valuable Player in 2021 after foremost Al-Hilal to a fourth title and is his nation’s match-winner.

Read – Five of the worst kits at the 2022 World Cup

Read Also – Five top players snubbed from World Cup squads

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