fter a lapse of 20 years, the World Cup is once again held in Asia. The Chinese men's football team once participated in the 2002 World Cup in Korea and Japan. This time, it failed to qualify for the World Cup held in Asia again. However, six teams participated in the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, setting a historical record for Asian teams to participate in the World Cup. South Korea, Japan, Qatar, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Australia, what are the prospects for this World Cup?
Son Heung-min vs Ronaldo
Twenty years ago, South Korea reached the semi-finals of the World Cup with a super strong home-field advantage. In the group stage, South Korea beat European teams Poland and Portugal in a row. After qualifying from the group, South Korea successively eliminated traditional strong teams Italy and Spain, and lost to Germany 0-1 in the semifinals.
South Korea now has more star players than it did back then. South Korean forward Son Heung-min is not only an Asian superstar, but also won the Premier League Golden Boot in the 2021-2022 season.
The Premier League is not used to the rise of Asian players. Son Heung-min was voted out of the Premier League's best team of the season. Superstar Cristiano Ronaldo seems to have robbed him of his place. Son Heung-min's Tottenham.
Coincidentally, Son Heung-min and Ronaldo will compete in the World Cup - South Korea and Portugal are divided into Group H, and the opponents in the same group include Uruguay and Ghana. In the last World Cup, South Korea beat the 2014 World Cup champions Germany 2-0 in the final round of the group stage. Son Heung-min scored the second goal to seal the victory. In the third round of the World Cup group stage, South Korea will challenge Portugal, the champions of Euro 2016.
Since the 1986 World Cup, South Korea has never missed the World Cup, in addition to reaching the semi-finals of the 2002 World Cup, the other group qualifying is the 2010 World Cup. In this World Cup, South Korea's goal is still to get out of the group first.
Japan meets German and Western doubles
Japan does not have a star player like Son Heung-min, and Minamino Takumi, who plays for the Premier League giants Liverpool, has few opportunities to play, but Japan has a strong overall strength.
Unlike the Chinese men's football team, which fluctuates between learning from Germany, England, the Netherlands, and Italy, Japan has been imitating Brazil's football style for many years, and its football talent training system has borne fruit. Japan has become a Brazilian team in Asia to some extent. .
The Japanese players have excellent skills, and their tactical literacy and confrontation ability are also obviously high. In the last World Cup, Japan became the only Asian team to reach the round of 16. In the group stage, Japan first defeated Colombia 2-1, and then drew with Senegal 2-2. Although they lost 0-1 to Poland in the final round, they still beat Senegal to qualify for the second place in the group.
In the 1/8 final, Japan faced Belgium, the world number one at the time. With the goals of Genki Haraguchi and Kankishi, Japan once led 2-0, but was finally reversed by Belgium with three goals in a row.
Japan's recent warm-up matches have been mixed, with a 4-1 victory over Paraguay, a 0-1 loss to Brazil, a 4-1 victory over Ghana, and a recent 0-3 defeat to Tunisia.
This World Cup, Japan's group is unfavorable. The opponents in Group E include two former World Cup champions Spain and Germany, as well as Costa Rica, which has just won the last World Cup ticket. If Japan wants to qualify for the group, it is necessary to beat Spain and Germany, one of the top two, which is quite difficult.
Since the 1998 World Cup, Japan's record in the World Cup (okbet casino)has been very regular, and the group failed to qualify and stopped in the top 16 alternately. Japan stopped in the top 16 in the last World Cup, and it should be the turn of the group this year. Will this rule be broken?
It is not easy for the host Qatar to qualify
The host may not be able to qualify for the group stage in the World Cup. For example, South Africa, the host of the 2010 World Cup, beat France 2-1 in the final round of the group stage, but only ranked third in the group.
The host of the World Cup, Qatar, is in a difficult group A. The opponents in the same group include the traditional strong team the Netherlands, the new African champion Senegal, and the South American powerhouse Ecuador.
Qatar does not need to participate in World Cup qualifiers, casting a layer of mystery over their record in international competitions in recent years. Three years ago in the Asian Cup final, Qatar defeated Japan 3-1, and the strikers "Gemini" Ali and Afif made contributions respectively.
Ali won the Golden Boot with 9 goals, setting the highest scoring record in the Asian Cup; Afif won the assists king with 10 assists, setting the highest assists record in the Asian Cup.
Japan and South Korea each have a number of internationals who play in the Europa League, but the Qatari internationals all play in the Qatar League, and their vision and game experience are relatively lacking. Qatar's grouping is somewhat similar to Japan's grouping in the last World Cup, with opponents including a European team, African powerhouse Senegal, and a South American powerhouse.
Qatar will face Ecuador, Senegal and the Netherlands successively in the group stage. The extent to which Qatar can take advantage of the home field will be the key to qualifying for the qualifying.
The other three teams have little hope
Australia excelled in the World Cup qualifier play-offs, knocking out South America's fifth-placed Peru on penalties. However, Australia's World Cup grouping situation is not good. The opponents in the same group include defending champion France and the European Cup semi-final team Denmark, as well as the traditional African team Tunisia.
Although France has performed poorly in the European Nations League, the main reason is that it does not pay attention to it. Its overall strength is still very impressive, and it has star players such as Mbappe and Benzema.
Denmark has made remarkable progress in recent years. The last World Cup 1/8 finals lost to Croatia, which finally won the runner-up after a penalty shootout. Last year, they reached the semi-finals of the European Cup. Recently, they defeated France 2-1 away in the UEFA Nations League. Tunisia recently beat Japan 3-0 in the warm-up match, which is also a team not to be underestimated.
Iran is the highest-ranked team in Asia, with opponents in the same group including England, the United States and Wales. England is full of stars and is regarded as one of the favorites to win the title. It reached the semi-finals of the last World Cup and the final of the European Cup last year.
The United States is a traditional strong team in Central and North America. Last year, Lectra beat Mexico to win the Central and North American and Caribbean Gold Cup championship. Wales has reached the semi-finals of the 2016 European Cup and has a star player who is good at playing big games. He is one of Real Madrid's former "BBC combinations".
The Saudi grouping is equally difficult, with opponents in the same group including Argentina, Poland, and Mexico. Argentina, led by superstar Lionel Messi, won the Copa America last year and became one of the favourites to win the World Cup.
Although Poland's overall strength is not very strong, after all, it has two-time World Footballer of the Year winner Lewandowski. Mexico is the traditional strong team in Central and North America with the most stable World Cup record. From the 1994 World Cup to the last World Cup, it has qualified for seven consecutive World Cup groups, but they all stopped in the 1/8 finals. Competing for qualification in this group is almost impossible for Saudi Arabia.