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The Underdogs

We all know that Brazil is tipped to win in Qatar, so let’s have a look at the bottom of the world ranking and at the teams that could be good for a surprise.

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Ghana

Ghana is the lowest-ranked team to compete (60). They only won one game in 2022 and would have to beat Portugal, Uruguay, and South Korea to emerge from the group stage.

The Black Stars used to be better though: just think back to 2010 when Ghana came closer to reach the semi-finals than any African team before. They lost to Uruguay in a dramatic turn of events that included a goal-line handball by Uruguayan enfant terrible Luis Suárez, a subsequent missed penalty by Ghana captain John Mensah and a penalty shoot-out. However, since 2014 the team slowly but steadily declined, and they only qualified for Qatar on the away goals after they drew both of their games.

Let’s see what Ghana has in store for us this year and if they’ll be the first African nation to hold the trophy.

Canada

The last time Canada’s men’s national team played on the world stage was in 1986 when they lost all three games in Mexico. So, it’s understandable that the team led by youngsters Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David started a nationwide excitement when they made it through to secure a spot in Qatar.

They are now facing Belgium, Morocco and 2018 runners-up Croatia. Belgium is projected to secure one of the qualifying spots from Group F, but who will get the other?

Even if Canada doesn’t go through, it’ll be a great test to prepare for 2026 when they will play on home turf. But who knows, maybe they’ll beat the odds.

Wales

Wales shares a similar fate with Canada. The one and only time they qualified was in 1958 and they haven’t made it back into the competition until this year.

Wales is now in Group B with neighbours England, Iran, and the USA. Looking at this group it would be a manageable feat for The Dragons to reach the knock-out stage like they did in their first appearance over 60 years ago.

They have come a long way in the last decade and even made it to the semi-finals at the Euros in 2016. They had a great experience at the Nations League and finished in the last 16 at the 2021 Euros.

Will 2022 be Wales’ year? We wouldn’t be surprised if they finish as one of the best teams in Qatar.