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2022 FIFA World Cup Team Previews: Qatar

Qatar
(Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

2022 FIFA World Cup Team Previews: Qatar

The 2022 FIFA World Cup is only 32 days away from kicking off in Qatar. Over the next 32 days, I will be previewing each team that will be taking part in the world’s most-watched event. Check out all of the team previews that have been done so far.

The host Qatar will begin the countdown to the 2022 World Cup. In preparation for the World Cup, Qatar has been participating in tournaments around the world. They include the 2019 Copa America, the 2021 CONCACAF Gold Cup where they were semifinalists, and the 2021 Arab Cup, where they hosted and finished 3rd. Qatar was granted automatic qualification for the upcoming World Cup as the host nation. They’ll be looking to surprise everyone. They are the 49th-ranked team in the FIFA men’s rankings.

World Cup Appearances

The 2022 World Cup will be the first-ever appearance in the competition for Qatar. They’ve improved greatly since finishing last in their qualification group ahead of the 2018 World Cup.

Best Finish at a World Cup

N/A

Key players

Qatar will be led by captain Hassan Al-Haydos who is the country’s most-capped player with 166 appearances for “The Maroon.” The forward is one of four players in the current Qatari squad to have made 100 or more appearances. Al-Haydos is also fifth on Qatar’s all-time goal-scoring list, with 34 goals for the team. After the captain, Qatar will rely on goalkeeper Saad Al Sheeb to fend off the dangerous attacks from Senegal and the Netherlands.

Manager

Felix Sanchez has been the manager of Qatar since 2017 and has gone 43-16-24 in charge. The Spaniard has been part of Qatari soccer since 2013, as he was the U19 and U23 manager before being promoted to the senior team. In the 2019 Asian Cup, Sanchez managed “The Maroon” to their first title in the competition.

Most Important Group Stage Match – vs Ecuador on November 20th

The opening game of the World Cup puts Qatar up against Ecuador. For Qatar, this may be their only chance to secure a win in Group A. We know the Netherlands and Senegal are far too good for Qatar to test them. The last time the two nations met was late in 2018 and Qatar came away the victor winning 4-3.

Prediction

It will be very unlikely to see “The Maroon” have similar success in the group stage that past hosts have had. If Qatar doesn’t make it out of the tough Group A, it will be just the second time the host nation did not advance out of the group stage since the knockout round was expanded to 16 teams for the 1986 World Cup along with South Africa in 2010. At the end of the day, Qatar will finish last in Group A and will be lucky to even get a point.

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