The 2022 World Cup table is already complete

With Costa Rica qualifying, the field is complete for the World Cup in Qatar (November 21-December 18), but favorites such as France and England seem at the end of their rope, five months from kick-off .

The “Ticos” snatched the 32nd and last ticket from New Zealand (1-0), in the final transcontinental play-off, thanks to a goal from Joel Campbell, the striker of the “Rayados” of Monterrey (Mexico), and a former Arsenal player.

The teammates of Paris Saint-Germain goalkeeper Keylor Navas have qualified for their sixth World Cup, their third in a row.

On Thursday, the blue-white-red flags of Costa Rica, and those of the two other recently qualified nations, Wales and Australia, were to be raised alongside those of the 29 teams already represented around the clock marking the time remaining before the tournament kicks off, on the iconic Doha Corniche.

Another sign that the countdown is progressing, the official poster of the Mondial-2022 was unveiled on Wednesday in the capital.

Made for the first time by a woman, the Qatari artist Bouthayna Al Muftah, it represents, in black and white, the traditional headdress of men waved in the air in sign of celebration after a goal, a gesture common in Qatar and in the world. Arab.

This cap also inspired the architecture of the Al Thumama stadium, where Costa Rica, quarter-finalists in 2014 and 8th finalists in 1990 in their first participation, will start their tournament against Spain on November 23.

In this formidable group E also appears Germany and Japan.

But recent matches in June have tended to erode the status of some gaming giants.

Traditionally among the favourites, the “Roja” and the “Mannschaft” are doing well and better respectively. Spain dominates its League of Nations group, ahead of Portugal, another contender, and Germany is reassured: after three draws, it crushed Italy (5-2) in the midst of a crisis, absent from the World Cup for the second consecutive edition.

But other European tenors are doing very badly. France has already lost its title in the League of Nations, with two defeats and two draws and will have to ensure its maintenance in League A in the last two matches of September.

Despite two of the best players in the world in attack, Karim Benzema and Kylian Mbappé, the reigning world champion is in a crisis of confidence, because the fatigue of a trying end to the season does not explain everything.

Coach Didier Deschamps has five months left to raise the bar, but his future opponents are working well.

Australia, the first of them, on November 22, is euphoric after qualifying on penalties against Peru (0-0, 5 pens to 4), Denmark leads its League of Nations group and has just win in Paris (2-1), and Tunisia shines in friendly matches, 3-0 against Japan and 2-0 against Chile.

Doubt also assails England, semi-finalist in Russia and finalist of the Euro last summer at home. The “Three Lions” have just been corrected at Wembley by Hungary (4-0), in proportions that recall the historic lesson inflicted in 1953 by the legendary team of Ferenc Puskas (6-3), the first team not British to establish itself in the “Temple” of football.

The English find themselves in a very “geopolitical” group with their neighbor from the United Kingdom, Wales, then the USA and Iran.

If some bastions of Old Europe creak, the South American favorites are doing well. Brazil has just beaten Japan (1-0) and South Korea (5-1), with three penalties from Parisian Neymar in these two matches.

Placed in a strong group, with Switzerland, Cameroon and Serbia, the “Seleçao” will begin its quest for a sixth star against the Serbs on November 24.

Argentina, in the group of Saudi Arabia, Mexico and Poland, for its part won the new version of the Intercontinental Cup of Nations against Italy (3-0) and walked against the Estonia (5-0) with a quintuplet from another PSG star, Lionel Messi, who is playing, at 35, probably his last chance to finally win the World Cup. Here is a not tired cador.


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