All About the Upcoming FIFA 2022 World Cup, with Student Opinions, Predictions, and More!


The FIFA World Cup is one of the most watched sports events in the world. The 2010 World Cup had over 3.2 billion viewers. This event only happens every four years, and the 2022 World Cup starts this month! Are you ready? In this article, I hope to provide less-experienced and experienced students with some thoughts and knowledge about this upcoming cup.


Our school’s predictions
Before we get into my thoughts and predictions, let’s hear some from our fellow students. Our school’s survey shows that even though soccer is the world’s most popular sport, it is less common amongst iUniversity Prep. Less than half of the surveyed students planned to watch the World Cup. Brazil was the highest voted on to win this year, with students such as Zia Ali thinking that Brazil would win because they are the #1 team in the world. Many other countries, such as France, and even the United States have received votes, but I was very impressed with the vote that came from iHoot’s very own sports section editor Danny Hall. He voted for Argentina, saying this: “I believe Argentina will win because they have the best form going into the World Cup. With an impressive 35-match unbeaten streak that rivals Italy’s record, it should be clear that Argentina are the squad every other nation should fear. This squad, led by the man himself, Lionel Messi, is going to be incredibly dangerous this World Cup, and I am all but certain that La Albiceleste will be lifting the famous World Cup trophy come December.” 


Group A:

Group A contains The Netherlands, Senegal, Ecuador, and Qatar. In my opinion, this is the weakest group in this year’s groups. Over the past few years, The Netherlands has improved dramatically, and going into this tournament, they rank number 8 in the world. With their rock solid defense that includes Virgil van Dijk, they are the favorites to win the group. Senegal is the only team that played in the 2018 World Cup, and they were eliminated in the group stage. They have also improved, and they rank number 18 in the world, the highest in Africa. Senegal, in my opinion, could cause some problems for the Netherlands defense. If Sadio Mane can play well for Senegal, he and his team can get through them, but if he doesn’t, there is a good chance that they will struggle. Ecuador, although with controversy, has qualified for their fourth world cup. They rank number 44 in the world. Ecuador could also spring a surprise with their very speedy, and confidence-high team. Qatar is this year’s host, and they are competing in their first ever world cup. They rank number 50 in the world. They have the home field advantage and will likely be more used to the climate. Will this play a factor? Let’s see!

My final predictions are: 1st: The Netherlands, 2nd: Senegal, 3rd: Ecuador, 4th: Qatar.

Group B:

Group B contains England, United States, Wales, and Iran. This group does not contain an extremely weak team and in my opinion is the strongest grouping for this year. For many years, England has been a soccer powerhouse. With players such as Harry Kane, they can control this group. They are ranked number 5 in the world. The United States, who are the youngest team going into this year’s World Cup, are a newly refurbished group of players from the team that missed qualification for the 2018 World Cup. Can players such as Christian Pulisic push this well rounded team past the group stage? They rank number 16 in the world. Wales have made an excellent run over the past few years, and they have qualified for their first World Cup since 1958. They are an experienced team that has very good chemistry and can wear teams down. Their wingers, Gareth Bale and Daniel James are key to this team’s success. Ranking number 19 in the world, they will be a difficult team to play. Iran have qualified for their third straight World Cup. They have the lowest ranking in this group at number 20 in the world. Strikers Mehdi Taremi and Sardar Azmoun are the standout players on this team. For them to make it past the group stage, their strikers must score and their poor defense will have to overperform. 

My final predictions are: 1st: England, 2nd: United States, 3rd: Iran, 4th: Wales.

Group C:

Group C contains Argentina, Mexico, Poland, and Saudi Arabia. This group will contain a struggle between teams to get into the knockout stage, and in my opinion, is the most competitive group. Argentina has one of the strongest teams in this tournament. They are ranked number 3 in the world. Lionel Messi is still one of the best players worldwide, even though this may be his last World Cup. They are the clear favorites in this group, and if they find their chemistry, they could win this cup. Mexico comes into this group as the top team in North America, ranking number 13 in the world. They have a strong attack that contains Hirving Lozano and Raul Jimenez. However, to advance in this group, their defense will be key. If their defense holds other teams’ attacks well, they will most likely advance. Poland hasn’t qualified for the round of 16 since 1986, but this year contains hope. They rank number 26 in the world. With their standout player, Robert Lewandowki, who is one of, if not the best, strikers in the world, they will certainly put up a fight against Argentina and Mexico. Saudi Arabia are the second lowest rated team in this world cup and they finished third in their group in 2018. They rank number 51 in the world. With no clear standout player, this team will have to play incredibly well in every aspect of the game to reach the round of sixteen. 

My final predictions are: 1st: Argentina, 2nd: Mexico, 3rd: Poland, 4th: Saudi Arabia.

Group D:

Group D contains France, Denmark, Tunisia, and Australia. This group is a slightly unbalanced group, which means a high possibility of an upset. France are the defending champions, and with many talented players such as Kylian Mbappe, they are the favorites to finish first in this group. They are ranked 4th in the world. Denmark are a relatively underrated team coming into this world cup. Ranked at 10th in the world, this team is very well rounded, but players such as Christian Eriksen will have to step up for this team to make a run. Tunisia, who are ranked as the third best team in Africa, have qualified for their second straight world cup. Ranked 30th in the world, this team has many sparks in their team. Players such as Ellyes Skhiri and Wahbi Khazri are very important to this team, and for them to make a run, expect good performances from them. Last, but not least, we have Australia. At 38th in the world, this team has made five straight world cups, but they haven’t made it out of the group stage in the last four. They have many great players, but haven’t been able to find their chemistry in the world cup recently. However, this year brings a new chance, and with their solid defense that includes Mathew Ryan, they might be able to squeeze through this group. 

My final predictions are: 1st: Denmark, 2nd: France, 3rd: Australia, 4th: Tunisia

Group E:

Group E contains Spain, Germany, Japan, and Costa Rica. This group is a very experienced group, with all of these teams qualifying for every World Cup since 2002, minus Costa Rica in 2010. Expect a less nervy performance from these teams. Starting with Spain, this team is a rock at the back. With their experienced defense that includes players such as Jordi Alba and Dani Carvajal, it won’t be a problem for them to limit their opponents’ goals. However, they only rank number 7 in the world because of their attack, which can improve. For this team to go to the final, a solid performance will be needed from their attack. Germany is a high-class team. They have qualified for every single World Cup that has ever occurred, and don’t expect them to play easy. Ranking 11th in the world, this team is trying to bounce back from the 2018 World Cup, where they suffered a horrible knockout in the group stage. Look for older players such as Manuel Neuer to lead this team, and younger players such as Leroy Sane and Jamal Musiala to be a spark in this team. Japan is a team going under the radar for this World Cup. With highly skilled players such as Takumi Minamino, look for them to counter-attack fast and score unexpected goals. They rank 24th in the world. Costa Rica has come into many recent World Cups rather unexpectedly. Coming into this year ranked number 31 in the world, their defense is usually pretty solid, but they struggle in attack. If this team is to advance past the group stage, expect their defense to concede fewer than four goals, and their attack to have stepped up dramatically.
My final predictions are: 1st: Germany, 2nd: Spain, 3rd: Japan, 4th: Costa Rica

Group F:

Group F contains Belgium, Croatia, Morocco, and Canada. This group will be one of the most exciting groups, as Belgium and Croatia, the higher ranked teams, are on a downfall, but the lower ranked teams, Morocco and Canada, are in great form. At number 2 in the world, Belgium has one of the most potent teams in the world. With Thibaut Courtois and Kevin De Bruyne being some of the best players in the world at their respective positions, they are expected to finish first in this group. Croatia are the defending World Cup challengers, losing out to France in the 2018 final. At 12th in the world, their midfield is key to their success. With Luka Modric, Marcelo Brozivic, and Mateo Kovacic, they will be looking to repeat 2018’s success. Morocco has qualified for their second straight world cup. With world class players such as Achraf Hakimi and Bono, look for them to finish games strong. For this team to make it to the round of 16 and potentially further, their chemistry will have to be spot on. They rank 22nd in the world. Canada was in great form when they qualified for the world cup. Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David are key to this team’s success. Ranking number 41 in the world, expect this team to put out a very strong performance. 

My final predictions are: 1st: Belgium, 2nd: Croatia, 3rd: Morocco, 4th: Canada

Group G:

Group G contains Brazil, Switzerland, Serbia, and Cameroon. This group will contain a real battle for the round of 16, but most likely a runaway first place. Right now, Brazil is the best team in the world at number one. They are the clear favorites for this group. With players such as Neymar, Allison, and Casemiro, their focus will be on winning the cup. Switzerland are playing in their fifth straight world cup. In three of the previous four, they have made the round of 16. At number 15 in the world, this group of players are favored to advance, but they will face a tough fight. Look for Granit Zhaka to be a key player to this team’s success. Serbia has been slightly under the radar for a long time. Since 1974, this team has qualified for a World Cup, then missed the next. However, that changes this year, as they are competing in their second straight world cup. At this moment, Serbia ranks number 21 in the world. Sergej Milinkovic-Savic and Aleksander Mitrovic will be crucial players for this team’s advancement in this cup. Last, we have Cameroon. This team has only once ever made it out of the group stage once. Their defense, which contains Andre Onana, is expected to perform well for this side to change that stat. At 43rd in the world, this team will push very hard the entire game. 

My final predictions are: 1st: Brazil, 2nd: Serbia, 3rd: Switzerland, 4th: Cameroon

Group H:

Group H contains Portugal, Uruguay, Korea, and Ghana. This group is the last group that you will hear about in the article, but that doesn’t mean it will be the least exciting! This group is a tricky group to predict, with all of these teams having different strengths and weaknesses. To start off, we have the highest ranked team in this group, Portugal. Ranking 9th in the world, they have one of the most impressive attacks in this gup. With one of the best in history, Cristiano Ronaldo, look for them to score a ton of goals. Uruguay also has an amazing attack. At 14th in the world, just five behind Portugal, they have two amazing goal scorers in Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani. Both at 35 now, their service will be key, as they are not the fastest strikers. However, if they find good service, they could be in for a long run. Next, we have Korea. They are heading into their 10th straight world cup, but they have only qualified for the round of 16 twice. At 28th in the world, they have their best player in their history starting for them at winger, Son Heung-min. Look for him to be their key to success. The last team we are talking about in this article is also the worst ranked team in this cup, Ghana. At number 61 in the world, they have quite a few talented players, such as Inaki Williams. However, their main problem is in conceding goals. If they can figure out their backline chemistry, they have a chance to make it to the round of 16. 

My final predictions are: 1st: Portugal, 2nd: South Korea, 3rd: Uruguay, 4th: Ghana

Knockout Stage: 

In the Knockout Stage, there are so many possibilities for matches, and on any given day, magic can happen for someone. 

Thanks for reading my article! I hope you both learned something and enjoyed reading it too. -Jaxon Radcliff


Bada, Ferdinand. “The Most Watched Sporting Events in the World.” WorldAtlas. WorldAtlas, July 3, 2018. https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/the-most-watched-sporting-events-in-the-world.html?adlt=strict&toWww=1&redig=A7F5815961F04466A0C0CE4FFACF61C5.