World Cup 2022 - discussion, predictions, and thoughts

Yes, this is happening in Winter for most of the competitors since Qatar is hosting it because…they bribed for it or something? I know it is controversial, but I’ll likely be watching it anyway.

In the US, who actually made the world cup this time, you can stream it on Peacock. I did like the Winter Olympics on Peacock, though be aware they will immediately delete everything after the WC ends if it is anything like their Olympic content.

Is anyone watching? We can entertain some boycott discussion here, I guess, though I wonder if we should focus on the tournament once it is underway. I

I’ll be paying the $5 for Peacock premium for one month much like I did for the Olympics.

Predictions? I have zero clue. I’m mainly a “world cup only” type of soccer watcher

*I mean for where most competitors live it is Winter

Who are you cheering for? I’ll start with my list, ranked in order of how much I want them to win:

United States of America - it’s not going to happen. I believe the USA barely qualified?

South Korea - My children were born there and we’d be thrilled if Korea pulls this off.

England - My Mom is from there. She still talks about their win.

Wales - My grandmother was from Wales. I’m just happy they qualified. Underdogs, but I’m rooting for them to do well. I think this might be the first country USA is playing, possibly?

That’s it. My grandfather was German, but even he held little nostalgia or patriotism for them. He left in the post-WW1 environment he grew up in and by WW2, he had distaste for his home country and rarely discussed it. The closest I’ve come to cheering for them was the schadenfreude of the 7-1 match in Brazil. It…was so terrible for Brazil…I could not look away.

I’ve been a Germany fan for forever, but am also following/rooting for the US.

Germany - nobody will ever convince me that a big part of 2014’s success wasn’t the fact that so many players were on Bayern & were used to playing together (not that anyone’s trying to convince me otherwise, but for example Ralph Hoenigstein’s book on that team only mentions it as a detail). WIth that in mind, it’s possible that the keeper (Neuer), midfielders (Kimmich, Goretka), and forward players (Sane, Gnabry, Musiala, Mueller), all from Bayern, will be a large part of the Germany team. The latter group is particularly critical now that Timo Werner is out.

That leaves the back line, which is a hodgepodge of players, but which does have two teammates (Schlotterbeck & Suele) as potential anchors. There are some other players like Hofmann and of course Guendogan who are quite fun to watch.

I guess overall I feel pretty good about the team. Paging @EinsteinsHund :slight_smile:

The US, hoo boy. Weston McKennie was injured and it’ll be a close call if he’s in. If he’s in, and Pulisic and Dest are healthy, I feel like the side has a pretty good chance in the group stages. If he’s out? Eh.

Frankly, I haven’t put much thought in it, and this is the first time in my life that I’m not looking forward to a World Cup. The circumstances around the holding of the WC in a state like Quatar with all the reports of hundreds or even thousands of dead workers on the stadiums and the massive violations of human rights, and yes, all the corruption involved (though that’s not unique to Quatar, but standard procedure for FIFA), and on top of that the out of season dating have left me jaded. (I’m not alone in this, most German football fans feel the same. It’s a very strange feeling. )

Notwithstanding, I don’t have much hope for the German team. We have like 20 world class midfielders and wingers, but not a single central striker, none. And the defense has been shaky for years.

I enjoy the occasional world cup or Euro match, but I’ll avoid everything to do with Qatar. Giving it to Qatar was an asinine decision on every possible level and Qatar have dragged their feet on everything they’ve been forced to promise to give the FIFA bigwigs some fig leafs to cover behind.

They started a Women’s national soccer team while the bid was being considered, and then let it go dormant in 2014.

They’ve promised improved conditions for workers, and while there has been improvement in legislation, the workers are still impoverished foreigners with precarious rights to stay in the country, so no power to take advantage of their legal rights as employees.

They’ve promised to not wholesale arrest all LGBTQ-spectators, but if you are anything than a straight man you’re an idiot if you think it’s worth it to go watch soccer in a country where it’s illegal to have fun if you’re not a straight man.

In a world that’s hurtling into a climate disaster the 2022 WC was given to a country that has to build air conditioned stadiums to host it, stadiums that going forward will have no purpose other than to host visiting teams who don’t mind being part of the sportswashing of an Islamic dictatorship.

Didn’t they back out of the air-conditioned stadiums after they got the WC assigned to them? I thought that was part of moving it to November-December.

Was it bribery to FIFA? I saw the John Oliver bit a few years ago, but have forgotten.

You’re gonna have a lot of mixed feelings whenever Group B is playing. On the plus side, at least one of your teams is going to make the knockout stage.

As for me, there’s so much around the Qatar situation that is pretty detestable, and given the time zones I’m probably not going to watch a lot of non-U.S.-involved matches. I do have a soft spot for Canada’s first trip in 36 years, but I fear with their sudden spate of injuries they may have a tough road out of their group.

It’s a tough road out of the group regardless, but hopefully Davies will be ready for the WC as was the most recent report. Crépeau getting hurt is too bad, but I don’t think he was going to see any action barring an injury to Borjan. Still some concern about Atiba and Osorio, but hopefully they’re able to play.

If we have Davies, David, Eustaquio, and Buchanan out there I’ll feel like there’s at least a puncher’s chance. With Adekugbe and Laryea too there’s a ton of speed on the Canadian side.

I can dream :smiley:

I’m intrigued by the official World Cup mascot, who appears to be an anthropomorphic keffiyeh (Arabic headdress).

Historical mascots ranked:

I find that bizarre and if I had designed it myself, I think people may have accused me of stereotyping or being bigoted. I’m presuming someone from Qatar designed it and it is acceptable.

I guess it has no cultural or religious sensitivity in anyway. It’d be like a giant Hawaiian Shirt being a mascot of an Olympics hosted in Honolulu. Acceptable, I guess?

Yes. During the drawings of the group stage matches, they had a version of this swooping around in one of the videos.

Oh, and here is Fox Sports embracing it. It’s pretty terrifying, in a horror movie this would drape over your head and smother you.

What an idiotic website. Instead of just having pictures of the mascots, they link to Twitter accounts, some of which are no longer active.

As someone from the USA, I didn’t really pay attention to Canada’s draw when it came out. They are in a tough group with Belgium and Croatia. Good luck getting past one of them.

Worse and worse…

Qatar World Cup ambassador said being gay is ‘damage in the mind’ in a tense TV interview amid mounting criticism of the hosts (

Yeah, it’s a tough group for sure. I can come up with scenarios where Canada makes it through, but probably the most likely outcome is losses against Belgium and Croatia, and some kind of result against Morocco.

I’m pretty sure that’s a D&D or other RPG monster. Something that lives in a cave like a bat and swoops down on you.

It looks like a white manta ray with a black halo.

McKennie was probably the worst person on the field in their 2 last warmup games and was pretty poor in qualifying. If he’s playing well, then he’s a starter, but given his form an injury might be good in that it makes the hard choice for Berhalter.

IMO, the best lineup given the probably roster is:

Aaronson------Take your pick----Pulisic

We’ll probably see Long over Ream though (ugh). Talent-wise the USA is probably #2 in the group, but even if they play to their level it’ll be tough.

Given France’s injuries I think Brazil is a clear leader in talent. Argentina might be in the best form though. Spain’s youth is interesting. Netherlands doesn’t have the attacking talent to scare me. Belgium hasn’t replaced defenders? Portugal? My predictions in order would probably be Brazil > France > Argentina. Going way out in a limb, I know.

Lots of rosters are being announced. Here’s the official USA list:

Goalkeepers: Matt Turner, Ethan Horvath, Sean Johnson
Fullbacks: Sergiño Dest, Antonee Robinson, DeAndre Yedlin, Joe Scally, Shaq Moore
Center backs: Walker Zimmerman, Aaron Long, Cameron Carter-Vickers, Tim Ream
Midfielders: Tyler Adams, Weston McKennie, Yunus Musah, Luca de la Torre, Kellyn Acosta, Cristian Roldan
Wingers: Christian Pulisic, Timothy Weah, Gio Reyna, Brenden Aaronson, Jordan Morris
Strikers: Jesús Ferreira, Josh Sargent, Haji Wright

Canada has a friendly with Bahrain tomorrow (mostly for MLS players since their season is over), and their roster announcement will be on Sunday.

Group B: England, Iran, United States, Wales

I really am screwed. How many teams go from group play to final round? Just one? I am cheering for England, Wales, and the US. A painful opening round for sure.