Ansu Fati, Gareth Bale rise; Ronaldo, Sadio Mane fall

The 2022 World Cup in Qatar begins in simply 5 days, when the host nation kicks all of it off on Nov. 20 once they tackle Ecuador.

– Stream on ESPN+: LaLiga, Bundesliga, MLS, extra (U.S.)

All 32 finalists have made their squad bulletins, hoping that star gamers do not get struck down by damage in coaching and head into their first match in high kind. Away from that, there’s loads of gamers who did not make their respective nationwide groups, together with shock additions.

Within the final version of the 2022 World Cup inventory watch, we’ll check out the favourites to see how they’re shaping up and in addition examine in with different nations as their gamers both shine or wrestle.

All World Cup squad lists for Qatar
Schedule, previews and how one can watch
32 team-by-team previews for the World Cup

JUMP TO: United States | France | Germany | Spain | Netherlands | Belgium | Argentina | Brazil | Mexico | Ecuador | Wales | Portugal | Australia | Senegal | Tunisia | Morocco | Cameroon | Ghana | Japan | South Korea | Uruguay | Iran | Saudi Arabia | | Qatar |


ENGLAND
Fixtures: IR Iran (Nov. 21), United States (Nov. 25), Wales (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

James Maddison: He was the dramatic late inclusion for England’s 26-man squad having not acquired a call-up for 3 years. An damage scare in Leicester Metropolis’s last Premier League recreation at Everton final weekend raised fears he may undergo the cruelest of blows and miss out however the midfielder travelled to Qatar with the group on Tuesday after it was revealed he suffered solely a minor knock to his knee and was substituted as a precaution.

Strikers Callum Wilson and Marcus Rashford edged out Ivan Toney and Tammy Abraham to be Harry Kane’s backup. Ben White additionally pressured his means in after an outstanding run of kind at Arsenal whereas Conor Gallagher squeezed into the squad regardless of beginning simply seven video games throughout all competitions this season previous to Gareth Southgate naming his choice.

STOCK FALLING

Ivan Toney: Toney’s brace in Brentford’s shock 2-1 win at Manchester Metropolis might be some small comfort for the ahead lacking out on England’s squad. Abraham and Fikayo Tomori have carried out properly since shifting to Serie A, with Roma and AC Milan respectively, however the former’s struggles in entrance of objective this season finally counted towards him. Tomori was arguably extra unfortunate given he fashioned a key a part of the Milan defence which gained the membership’s first league title in 11 years final season. It’s a signal of how far Jadon Sancho’s inventory has fallen that his omission was not even thought of a lot of a shock.

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Rob Dawson believes Gareth Southgate’s call-up of Callum Wilson is an identical shock to James Maddison’s inclusion.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Southgate’s squad was largely met with a constructive response given he included two of the gamers behind which there had been a clamour for his or her choice: James Maddison and Trent Alexander-Arnold. England are with out Reece James and wish each Kyle Walker and Kalvin Phillips to shortly regain match sharpness, however England have reached Qatar with out accidents to their key gamers.

The grueling Premier League schedule hasn’t helped, nonetheless, and Southgate has no friendlies to fine-tune his pondering earlier than England’s opening recreation towards Iran subsequent Monday. England are with no win in six matches however actually it comes down to 2 questions with Southgate: can he facilitate England peaking at a match as he did in 2018 and finally yr’s delayed Euros? And can he ship a bolder model of soccer which the followers imagine this proficient group of attacking gamers can ship? He might have a contract till 2024, however Southgate’s future within the eyes of many onlookers in all probability relies on constructive solutions to each of these questions. — James Olley


UNITED STATES
Fixtures: Wales (Nov. 21), England (Nov. 25), IR Iran (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Tim Ream: Ream made only one look in World Cup qualifying, a 0-0 tie towards El Salvador that began off the Octagonal in September of 2021. However a mix of accidents to Miles Robinson and Chris Richards, plus a powerful run of kind this season for the Cottagers, opened the door for Ream to make the ultimate squad. Given the best way Berhalter likes his groups to play out of the again, Ream’s composure on the ball may come in useful for the U.S., and at age 35, making the World Cup squad is a large achievement for the St. Louis native.

STOCK FALLING

Zack Steffen: If there was a title for largest snub, Steffen would win in a stroll. The Boro keeper was first alternative for a lot of this World Cup cycle, and at minimal discovered himself in competitors with Arsenal’s Matt Turner. However some high-profile blunders, together with in final yr’s FA Cup semifinal towards Liverpool, planted seeds of doubt, and when it got here time to make his choice, Berhalter opted for Turner, Luton City’s Ethan Horvath and New York Metropolis FC’s Sean Johnson. Keepers have an extended shelf life than outfield gamers, so for Steffen, at age 27, there’s nonetheless time to make a World Cup squad. However this disappointment will minimize deep.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

The aforementioned losses of Robinson and Richards might be powerful to switch, however general, the U.S. appears to be therapeutic up on the proper time. Weston McKennie was again in coaching for the U.S. on Tuesday, as was midfielder Luca de la Torre. Tim Weah additionally made his second consecutive 90-minute look for Lille earlier than becoming a member of up with the U.S. All informed, the People are in about pretty much as good a spot health-wise as may very well be hoped for. — Jeff Carlisle

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Watch Weston McKennie, Josh Sargent, Sean Johnson and others discover out from Gregg Berhalter that they’ve made the World Cup roster.


FRANCE
Fixtures: Australia (Nov. 22), Denmark (Nov. 26), Tunisia (Nov. 30)

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

France have plain expertise, however will miss Paul Pogba and N’Golo Kante who’re injured. Denmark, who had an incredible run in EURO 2020, will take a look at Didier Deschamps’ facet within the group stage after defeating them twice this yr. There are additionally off-pitch issues for Les Bleus, with rumours that Pogba enlisted a witch physician to forged a spell on Kylian Mbappe. Nonetheless, the defending champs look favorites to high the group and can intention to finish the winners’ curse. — SherShah Atif


GERMANY
Fixtures: Japan (Nov. 23), Spain (Nov. 27), Costa Rica (Dec. 1)

STOCK CLIMBING

Niclas Fullkrug: It appeared as if half the nation rooted for Fullkrug to be included within the squad, and Germany head coach Hansi Flick determined to offer him an opportunity, that means that Fullkrug may make his worldwide debut at a World Cup on the age of 29. The tall striker may turn into Germany’s weapon in video games wherein the small-ball model isn’t working, and the impasse must be damaged another means.

Youssoufa Moukoko: The gifted striker will rejoice his 18th birthday in Qatar as Flick granted him a spot after Timo Werner and Lukas Nmecha had turn into unavailable resulting from accidents. Moukoko matches Germany’s attacking model in that he has his energy on the bottom and as a part of fast-paced passing performs.

Mario Gotze: The comeback story of the yr has been written by Gotze. His final look for Germany dates again to 2017, but his performances for Eintracht Frankfurt enable him to return and play one other World Cup for Germany. Gotze scored the profitable objective within the 2014 World Cup last. Maybe he can do one thing historic as soon as once more.

STOCK FALLING

Marco Reus: An ankle damage has put Borussia Dortmund’s captain on the shelf as soon as once more. Flick informed the press final Thursday that the 33-year-old did all the pieces to “catch the train” nevertheless it didn’t work out. Reus was not chosen and thus misses the fourth main worldwide match in his profession.

Mats Hummels: The 33-year-old defender spoke of “one of the greatest disappointments” after he had discovered about Flick’s choice to depart him out of the World Cup squad, primarily in favor of Southampton center-back Armel Bella-Kotchap. Hummels has performed an honest season up to now however couldn’t persuade Flick to offer him one other likelihood.

Robin Gosens: The Inter Milan left-back has struggled to get enjoying time within the Serie A which finally value him his spot. Whereas he created some hype for himself finally yr’s European Championship, Gosens has not been in a position to preserve his inventory excessive sufficient to the purpose of fulfilling himself a life-long dream of enjoying at a World Cup.

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Gab & Juls preview Group E on the 2022 World Cup, dwelling to heavyweights Germany and Spain.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Anticipation was excessive for Flick’s squad announcement and, as anticipated, followers are cut up on whether or not the nationwide coach made the appropriate selections. Flick’s choice to pick solely three centre-midfielders has been mentioned significantly intensely amongst supporters and journalists. If Joshua Kimmich will get injured throughout the match Germany’s probabilities would lower considerably, however being depending on a sure participant is a headache Germany shares with most nations. — Constantin Eckner


SPAIN
Fixtures: Costa Rica (Nov. 23), Germany (Nov. 27), Japan (Dec. 1)

STOCK CLIMBING

Ansu Fati: The Barcelona ahead was not concerned over the past worldwide break and Luis Enrique admitted his largest doubt forward of confirming his squad was wherever to incorporate him or not. In the long run, given the dearth of targets within the squad, he determined he was value of venture. Ansu’s final two years have been ruined by accidents however he has remained match this season.

Hugo Guillamon: Enrique opted for Guillamon, who has been enjoying in midfield for his membership Valencia this season, as Spain’s fourth alternative centre-back. He bought the nod forward of extra expertise choices, akin to Sergio Ramos and Inigo Martinez, regardless of solely having gained three caps for his nation beforehand.

STOCK FALLING

Sergio Ramos: He has not featured for Spain since early 2021 however his performances for Paris Saint-Germain had propelled him again into the dialog forward of the finals. Nonetheless, Luis Enrique opted for youthful choices, leaving the previous captain out for the second main worldwide match working. “Sergio Ramos best defender in the world,” PSG teammate Achraf Hakimi posted on social media after the information break.

Borja Iglesias: The Actual Betis striker’s exclusion wouldn’t usually be information given he solely made his worldwide debut final month, however he appeared to have performed his means onto the aircraft for Qatar. Nonetheless, regardless of his eight LaLiga targets thus far, Luis Enrique opted for only one pure No.9 in Alvaro Morata.

Thiago: Given the model Spain play with beneath Luis Enrique is most just like Barcelona — who’ve seven gamers within the squad — La Masia graduate Thiago ought to be an apparent decide. Nonetheless, accidents and kind have seen the Liverpool midfielder fall down the pecking order and he is likely one of the gamers to drop out of the squad that competed in Euro 2020 final summer season.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Spain might have a younger squad however there’s at all times a sure degree of expectation within the nation when the 2010 world champions go into a significant match. In Luis Enrique they’ve among the finest coaches on the match and their semifinal displaying at Euro 2020 ought to present platform for doing properly in Qatar.

They’re properly stocked in midfield however there are doubts about the place the targets will come from and the defence is at its greatest when Spain have the ball. They may very well be examined if they’re ever pressured to defend for a sustained interval of the time. All that thought of, a quarterfinal run might be the minimal anticipated and Barcelona midfielder Pedri is the participant to control. — Sam Marsden


NETHERLANDS
Fixtures: Senegal (Nov. 21), Ecuador (Nov. 25), Qatar (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Xavi Simons, Jeremie Frimpong, Noa Lang & Andries Noppert: Louis van Gaal has introduced his last minimize final Friday. In his 26-headed squad there’s room for extremely proficient 19-year-old Simons, Frimpong, Lang and Noppert.

These gamers is perhaps essentially the most stunning names on the listing of Louis van Gaal, because the media are questioning to pick Wout Weghorst, Luuk de Jong and Vincent Janssen who’re thought of to be the identical sort of gamers. It is the primary time for Simons and Frimpong to be a part of the ultimate squad.

Probably the most stunning title should be Noppert, who used to play within the Serie B 4 years in the past and second alternative within the second division of Holland. After he performed very properly for Go Forward Eagles, followers have been jokingly shouting that he is perhaps thought of for the nationwide squad. After he bought transferred to Heerenveen his fairytale grew to become true. Louis van Gaal informed the press he’s the one goalkeeper who’s in kind for the time being so perhaps he can dream of creating his debut as a global.

STOCK FALLING

Jasper Cillessen & Mark Flekken: Clearly, the gamers who’re lacking out is the largest theme within the Holland. Van Gaal informed in his press convention that he would not wish to discuss gamers who usually are not elected, however he did anyway. Everyone seems to be stunned about Cillessen and Flekken not being chosen. Cillessen — who was out of Euro 2020 for unclear causes (recovered from COVID-19) — is not a part of the group as a result of he struggled two video games final couple of weeks.

Though Van Gaal informed that that is the explanation of lacking out, all people thinks it has to do together with his conduct when he’s not the primary. Nobody understands that “his form” is the explanation, as a result of for instance 39-year-old Remko Pasveer is struggling for only a longer interval.

Mark Flekken, who bought “discovered” by Van Gaal, is lacking out as properly, though he’s performing very properly at quantity 3 of the Bundesliga SC Freiburg for the time being. He’s the goalkeeper with essentially the most clear sheets of Germany (9) and — after Cillessen (79.7%) and Noppert (76.5%) — the Dutch goalie with the very best save proportion (74.2%). Gamers akin to Devyne Rensch, Guus Til, Ryan Gravenberch, Arnaut Danjuma, Donyell Malen, who have been a part of Van Gaals final groups, are surprisingly not chosen.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Van Gaal was very clear throughout his press convention. KNVB’s goal is reaching the quarter last however the 71-year-old coach desires to be world champion. That is his private goal, like his gamers. It will likely be his final achievement as he leaves after the World Cup. Memphis Depay isn’t in a position to make it for the fist recreation on Monday, which has a big impact on the group. Denzel Dumfries needed to be substituted within the final recreation for Internazionale. It’s unclear if he makes it for the primary recreation towards Senegal. — Max Toemen


BELGIUM
Fixtures: Canada (Nov. 23), Morocco (Nov. 27), Croatia (Dec. 1)

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

This may very well be the final likelihood for Belgium’s golden era to win a significant match. With an in-form Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku again from damage, they may look to go all the best way in Qatar. Head coach Roberto Martinez led the group to a 3rd place end in 2018, their greatest ever end result at a World Cup. The group may even look to Eden Hazard to faucet into his capacity to interrupt strains and disrupt play. — SherShah Atif


ARGENTINA
Fixtures: Saudi Arabia (Nov. 22), Mexico (Nov. 26), Poland (Nov. 30)

STOCK CLIMBING

Enzo Fernandez: He has had a thrilling few months — a transfer from River Plate to Benfica, hitting the bottom working within the Champions League, making his first look for Argentina. And now the absence via damage of Giovani Lo Celso may open the door for Fernandez to be first alternative within the World Cup.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Bristling with confidence that the lengthy unbeaten run may be stretched out all the best way to last on Dec. 18th — Tim Vickery

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Gab Marcotti and Don Hutchison talk about Argentina’s World Cup hopes after their 3-0 win over Italy.


BRAZIL
Fixtures: Serbia (Nov. 24), Switzerland (Nov. 28), Cameroon (Dec. 2)

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

With a variety of attacking choices and a mix of youth and expertise, they’re able to justify their standing because the bookie’s favourites. The likes of Neymar, Vinicius Jr., Richarlison and Rodrygo will lead the assault, whereas Casemiro might be a midfield anchor and Thiago Silva will begin in defence. — Tim Vickery

– Brazil’s World Cup squad: Alves included, Firmino out


MEXICO
Fixtures: Poland (Nov. 22), Argentina (Nov. 26), Saudi Arabia (Nov. 30)

STOCK CLIMBING

Raul Jimenez: Regardless of one other prolonged damage that has left him with out minutes since August, Jimenez snuck into Mexico’s last World Cup roster after it was determined that he was wholesome sufficient to participate within the match. As soon as a severe doubt resulting from a groin damage, El Tri’s main No. 9 is now again within the image and able to be a much-needed game-changer in Qatar.

STOCK FALLING

Santiago Gimenez: The Jimenez information proved to be bittersweet for Mexico followers who then discovered that Gimenez, an up-and-coming striker who’s the present joint high scorer within the 2022-23 Europa League, wouldn’t make the minimize for the World Cup. The 21-year-old is fourth in line within the ahead depth chart for Mexico supervisor Gerardo “Tata” Martino, that means that after Jimenez was wholesome sufficient to be included, Gimenez was out of the image for the coach who has beforehand acknowledged that he solely wants three strikers.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

The exclusion of Gimenez is a wider signal of Martino’s propensity to go along with extra senior gamers over promising youthful names. In truth, in Mexico’s last World Cup roster, no participant is beneath the age of 23. Leaving Gimenez out, 22-year-old Diego Lainez and a handful of different youthful choices might be of venture for Martino, and solely time will inform if he made the appropriate choice. One last pleasant stays on Nov. 16 towards Sweden earlier than El Tri head to Qatar. — Cesar Hernandez


ECUADOR
Fixtures: Qatar (Nov. 20), Netherlands (Nov. 25), Senegal (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Kevin Rodriguez: The midfielder performs for Imbabura in Ecuador’s second division. He was known as up for Saturday’s recreation towards Iraq as a result of the group didn’t have sufficient gamers out there. And he did so properly after coming off the bench that house has been discovered for him within the squad. There’s additionally a name up a participant with among the finest names within the match. Former worldwide left again Neicer Reasco named his son after a distinguished French ahead of the 90s – and now there’s shock name up for Djorkaeff Reasco as a striker in Ecuador’s squad.

STOCK FALLING

Byron Castillo: Castillo is the putting absence from the final squad to be named was proper again, and has spent the previous few months on the centre of an issue about his identification. Chile declare that he was born in Colombia and as such was ineligible. FIFA dismissed their argument. However final week the Courtroom of Arbitration for Sport got here out with a seemingly contradictory choice.

They dominated that he was eligible to play for Ecuador, however that false data had been provided in his passport. Ecuador’s place within the World Cup was safe, however they must pay a effective and forfeit three factors within the subsequent set of qualifiers. Castillo limped off early in Saturday’s recreation towards Iraq. Has he been unnoticed due to damage, or as a result of Ecuador concern additional sanctions in the event that they play him in Qatar? — Tim Vickery

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Badly in want of targets. Because the finish of qualification Ecuador have saved six consecutive clear sheets. However they’ve solely scored twice, and Saturday’s recreation towards Iraq was their third straight 0-0 draw.


WALES
Fixtures: United States (Nov. 21), IR Iran (Nov. 25), England (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Gareth Bale: Wales’ captain says he’s 100% match to guide his nation on the World Cup. The 33-year-old has struggled with accidents at LAFC this season, however is able to go. Bale is Wales’ all-time high scorer with 40 targets in 108 video games.

“I’m fully fit and ready to go. If I need to play three 90s (minutes), I’ll play three 90s,” Bale informed a information convention on Monday. — SherShah Atif


PORTUGAL
Fixtures: Ghana (Nov. 24), Uruguay (Nov. 28), South Korea (Dec. 2)

STOCK FALLING

Cristiano Ronaldo: In an explosive interview, the Portugal captain accused Manchester United of making an attempt to power him out of the membership. Regardless of issues that the information may derail Portugal’s focus on the World Cup, Joao Mario mentioned that was not the case, and it would not put additional strain on the group. Ronaldo might be enjoying with United teammates Diogo Dalot and Bruno Fernandes, and video of the famous person with Fernandes confirmed a frosty change. — SherShah Atif

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Bruno Fernandes did not appear happy to fulfill Manchester United and Portugal teammate Cristiano Ronaldo following his feedback in an interview.


AUSTRALIA
Fixtures: France (Nov. 22), Tunisia (Nov. 26), Denmark (Nov. 30)

STOCK CLIMBING

Cammy Devlin and Keanu Baccus: Neither Devlin nor Baccus have been capped by the Socceroos in a senior worldwide — their solely cap arriving in Australia’s last pre-World Cup pleasant towards New Zealand — however each have parlayed robust seasons within the Scottish top-flight into choice by coach Graham Arnold for Qatar 2022 on the expense of gamers akin to Denis Genreau and Conor Metcalfe, who play at greater ranges than the duo however has seen a lot much less of the sector in 2022.

Mat Ryan: The shock omission of Mitch Langerak from the Socceroos’ World Cup squad paves the best way for Ryan to function the unquestioned primary for Australia in Qatar; back-ups Danny Vukovic and Andrew Redmayne beneath no illusions as to their place within the pecking order beneath the present teaching workers.

The Socceroos S&C Employees: Arnold has backed his medical group to make sure that a number of gamers with medical clouds hanging over their heads will have the ability to contribute in Qatar: Nathaniel Atkinson, Fran Karacic, Harry Souttar, Kye Rowles, Ajdin Hrustic, and Martin Boyle all doable starters and all carrying damage and health issues.

STOCK FALLING

Mitch Langerak: Primarily based on each kind and footballing capacity, the choice to omit goalkeeper Langerak defied footballing sense and former Socceroo Tommy Oar declared that it was “an absolute wind up” and mentioned it “takes jobs for the boys to a whole new level,” in a tweet that was appreciated by a number of former Socceroos.

Solely known as out of worldwide retirement by Arnold in September, Langerak has seemingly fallen prey to a scarcity of a relationship with Socceroos’ goalkeeping coach John Crawley, who has an in depth historical past with Ryan, Redmayne, and Vukovic, and the will to not probably problem the perceived pecking order amongst the keepers union.

Kenny Dougall: Whereas enjoying loads of match minutes at a membership degree has confirmed a boon for Devlin and Baccus, there was no such luck for Blackpool midfielder Dougall, who was unnoticed of Arnold’s facet regardless of enjoying 89% of accessible minutes for the Tangerines within the English Championship.

Trent Sainsbury: For all the warmth that Arnold has been positioned beneath for choosing or being influenced in direction of favourites in sure positions, he cannot be accused of nepotism in relation to Sainsbury: the Socceroos’ boss leaving his personal son-in-law out of his last squad of 26.

The announcement of Arnold’s 26-player squad, in addition to the vocabulary he has used round it, leaves little doubt as to how Australia are going to go about issues in Qatar: 11 “Boxing Kangaroos” (the coach’s new, most popular slogan for his enjoying group) exhibiting copious quantities of “Aussie DNA” as they appear to bodily take it to opponents and switch video games right into a contest of wills that the old-school Australian mindset believes it has a bonus in. Their foes are all extra high-credentialled and, actually within the case of opening opponent France, merely possessing higher gamers, so any moments of footballing endeavour are prone to be delivered on the counter-attack.

Finally, even when Australian soccer has by no means had that a lot confidence in its nationwide facet’s footballing capabilities, there has by no means been any doubt about its ranges of effort. The query is that if that is sufficient. — Joey Lynch

– Rogic, Sainsbury miss out on Socceroos squad
Lynch: Squad has coach Arnold’s fingerprints throughout it


SENEGAL
Fixtures: Netherlands (Nov. 21), Qatar (Nov. 25), Ecuador (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Idrissa Gueye: He injured his quad in Everton’s earlier Premier League fixture, however regardless of issues about his World Cup participation, returned to the beginning lineup because the Toffees have been defeated 3-0 by Bournemouth.

STOCK FALLING

Sadio Mane: The Bayern Munich gamers damaging his proper fibula is the largest African storyline — and headache — because the World Cup attracts nearer, with the continent plunged into an anxious wait on the ahead’s health. Unique prognoses recommended he’ll be out for between three and 4 weeks, that means that he may probably even return for the tail finish of the group stage, however he’ll endure an additional MRI scan on Sunday to supply additional clarification. With out him, Senegal’s probabilities of returning to the quarterfinals seem slim.

Abdou Diallo: He’s prone to begin at centreback alongside Kalidou Koulibaly. Diallo has been named in Aliou Cisse’s 26-man squad, regardless of lacking RB Leipzig’s final two matches with a knee damage picked up within the midweek warm-up forward of the Freiburg recreation.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Mane’s damage has clearly modified the panorama for Senegal; he is their talisman, the participant whose transformed penalty gained the nation’s first Africa Cup of Nations, and in response to the Ballon d’Or voters, is the second greatest participant on the planet. Any facet would miss his high quality, however the Lions now should re-focus on getting ready for his or her group-stage marketing campaign with out the Bayern Munich famous person. At the least the likes of Edouard Mendy, Koulibaly and Gueye are match and again in motion, though Senegal want a Plan B to duplicate Mane’s expertise within the last third urgently. — Ed Dove

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Gab & Juls preview Group A on the 2022 World Cup, which comprises hosts Qatar, Netherlands, Senegal and Ecuador.


TUNISIA
Fixtures: Denmark (Nov. 22), Australia (Nov. 26), France (Nov. 30)

STOCK FALLING

Saad Bguir: The Saudi Arabia-based participant has been coaching with the Tunisia squad since November 6 after being named on Jalel Kadri’s listing of non-Europe-based gamers, however was knowledgeable on Sunday morning that he will not be travelling on with the group to Qatar. The precise causes for the u-turn haven’t but been disclosed.

Saifeddine Khaoui: Regardless of some encouraging showings in Ligue 1 with Clermont, Khaoui was neglected for the ultimate Carthage Eagles squad. It isn’t fully stunning — the 27-year-old has made only one look because the AFCON — however Kadri clearly feels the squad has sufficient creativity with out him.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

There have been no main shock inclusions in Tunisia’s last squad, with the one shock having been confirmed earlier within the month when 38-year-old former captain Aymen Mathlouthi was included for Kadri’s pre-tournament coaching. He hasn’t featured for the nationwide facet for 3 years, however is one among 4 goalkeepers included within the squad. All three of the Eagles’ goalkeepers noticed motion on the 2018 World Cup in Russia, besides, to incorporate 4 seems extreme! — Ed Dove


MOROCCO
Fixtures: Croatia (Nov. 23), Belgium (Nov. 27), Canada (Dec. 1)

STOCK CLIMBING

Hakim Ziyech: The Morocco playmaker nonetheless hasn’t gained over Graham Potter, amidst ongoing rumours of a January exit from Chelsea, however he has at the very least been getting extra enjoying time because the World Cup looms. He was given a 17-minute cameo within the loss at Newcastle United which, coupled with the 68 minutes he performed in defeat by Manchester Metropolis in midweek, is essentially the most gametime Ziyech has seen in per week since early September.

Nayef Aguerd: 5 months after signing for West Ham United, Aguerd lastly made his Premier League debut in Saturday’s 2-0 defeat by Leicester Metropolis, approaching as an early substitute for Kurt Zouma. He did not seem fazed by the depth of the Prem – regardless of the Hammers’ troubles – and coped properly aerially in addition to with the ball at his ft.

STOCK FALLING

Amine Harit: One of many gamers returning to the squad beneath Walid Regragui, he’ll miss the match after sustaining a severe knee damage in motion for Marseille towards Monaco on Sunday. “It’s by giving it your all that you avoid injuries,” the attacking midfielder mentioned in a press convention earlier than the match. “If you get hurt in the last game, it’s destiny and it was meant to be…”

Zakaria Aboukhlal: The winger, named within the Morocco squad introduced final week, sustained a thigh damage within the last Ligue 1 recreation earlier than the break, as Toulouse have been defeated by Stade Rennais. Encouragingly, the 22-year-old has travelled to Doha and can obtain additional medical evaluation to determine what function he can play within the Atlas Lions’ marketing campaign. There’s optimism throughout the camp that, even when Aboukhlal is unlikely to function within the opener towards Croatia, he may play a job within the subsequent matches.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Not like Senegal or Ghana, Morocco’s injured gamers aren’t undisputed first-teamers and even pivotal figures for the nationwide facet, and whereas disappointing, will not rework their prospects in Qatar. Strikers Ayoub El Kaabi and Ryan Mmaee, who contributed a mixed 10 targets in qualifying, are each casualties of Walid Regragui’s appointment, and the brand new head coach seems assured that out-of-sorts Youssef En-Nesyri can spearhead the Atlas Lions’ attacking menace. — Ed Dove


CAMEROON
Fixtures: Switzerland (Nov. 24), Serbia (Nov. 28), Brazil (Dec. 2)

STOCK CLIMBING

Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting: He might be hoping for a Ballon d’Or nomination at this price, after extending his goalscoring run with Bayern Munich’s second of their 2-0 victory at Schalke 04. The Qatar-bound striker has now had a hand in 12 targets in his final 9 video games for the Bavarians in all competitions, a run stretching again to mid-October.

STOCK FALLING

Michael Ngadeu-Ngadjui: He was sensationally axed from Cameroon’s World Cup squad regardless of being the nation’s standout centreback lately. He was an AFCON winner in 2017 and has performed in 9 of the nationwide facet’s 13 matches to this point in 2022, representing a uncommon supply of stability inside an unconvincing backline. Amidst various rumours and allegations throughout the native media, the precise causes for the 31-year-old’s omission haven’t been conveyed by Rigobert Tune or Samuel Eto’o.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Choupo-Moting’s ongoing kind — sustained till the eve of the match — provides Tune a pleasing downside because it’s more and more obvious he’ll discover it troublesome to omit the veteran from his beginning XI. Nonetheless, with Karl Toko Ekambi and Moumi Ngamaleu offering tempo and width, Tune must select whether or not to drop AFCON high scorer Vincent Aboubakar or take a person out of the midfield to include the Bayern famous person. — Ed Dove


GHANA
Fixtures: Portugal (Nov. 24), South Korea (Nov. 28), Uruguay (Dec. 2)

STOCK CLIMBING

Tariq Lamptey, Daniel-Kofi Kyereh & Salis Abdul Samed: Lamptey and Kyereh each made the Ghana squad regardless of sitting out fixtures for his or her golf equipment in current weeks, suggesting head coach Otto Addo has religion of their health, whereas uncapped midfielder Samed of Lens may show to be a worthwhile — if sudden — addition to the squad.

STOCK FALLING

Jojo Wollacott & Richard Ofori: Each Ghana goalkeepers have been dominated out of the World Cup on the final minute. Skilled Ofori has not made Otto Addo’s 26-man squad after sustaining a knee damage throughout Orlando Pirates’ MTN8 victory over AmaZulu, whereas Wollacott broken a finger within the warm-up of Charlton Athletic’s League One assembly with Burton Albion.

“Everyone at the club is bitterly disappointed for Jojo,” mentioned Charlton boss Ben Garner. “He played such an important part in Ghana getting to the World Cup and we all know how much he was looking forward to it. “For the damage to occur so near the match and in such innocuous vogue may be very merciless.”

Iddrisu Baba: The Black Stars will also be without their first choice defensive midfielder in Qatar after Baba sustained a muscle injury in Mallorca’s midweek victory over Atletico Madrid. Despite an initial prognosis that the 26-year-old would only miss a week of action, he hasn’t been risked by Addo.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Losing two undisputed starters — as well as the would-be deputy goalkeeper — would be a major blow for any nation heading to the World Cup, and the week’s setbacks will have a major impact on Ghana’s preparation. Addo must now assess inexperienced back-up goalkeeping options Lawrence Ati-Zigi and Abdul Nurudeen in Thursday’s friendly against Switzerland, as well as examine various potential — yet untested — stand-ins for Baba. The latter’s injury may also heap further pressure on Thomas Partey, whose own fragile fitness will again come under scrutiny.– Ed Dove


JAPAN
Fixtures: Germany (Nov. 23), Costa Rica (Nov. 27), Spain (Dec. 1)

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

With the Japan the earliest team to name their squad for the World Cup, there has been little to note with regards to team selection apart from the injured Yuta Nakayama being replaced by Shuto Machino. There are still question marks over the Samurai Blue’s potential lack of firepower up front, even though midfielder Daichi Kamada has been prolific in front of goal so far this season. But with Brighton man Kaoru Mitoma also finding form recently, Japan may be quietly confident in their prospects. — Gabriel Tan


SOUTH KOREA
Fixtures: Uruguay (Nov. 24), Ghana (Nov. 28), Portugal (Dec. 2)

STOCK CLIMBING

Lee Kang-In: In the end, Mallorca playmaker Lee Kang-In did get the nod for the World Cup even if he may not have received as much playing time as he would have liked from South Korea coach Paulo Bento in recent warm-up friendlies. Bento has stated that the presence of Lee is not solely for cover in the event injured captain Son Heung-Min fails to prove his fitness, so perhaps the 21-year-old could even feature more prominently.

STOCK FALLING

Um Won-Sang: Um Won-Sang is one of the more-talented prospects in South Korea at the moment. There is every chance he may follow in the footsteps of many of his compatriots by making the grade in Europe. But for now, he will have to wait for another four years to appear at the World Cup after the 23-year-old was arguably the highest-profile casualty as Bento named his squad for Qatar 2022.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Despite concerns over the availability of Son, who could very well miss their opener against Uruguay on Nov. 24 at the very least, South Korea can lay claim to having a well-balanced roster for the tournament. There is quality in all areas of the park and in spite of the obvious A-grade talent in Son and centre-back Kim Min-Jae, the likes of Hwang Ui-Jo, Hwang Hee-Chan and Hwang In-Beom also belong to the upper echelon of supporting casts. — Gabriel Tan


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Gab & Juls preview Group H at the 2022 World Cup, with Portugal, Uruguay, Ghana and South Korea fighting to qualify.

URUGUAY
Fixtures: South Korea (Nov. 24), Portugal (Nov. 28), Ghana (Dec. 2)

STOCK CLIMBING

Facundo Torres: The Orlando City player was a suprise inclusion, and both right backs Guillermo Varela and Jose Luis Rodriguez can consider themselves fortunate. Busy winger Agustin Canobbio was also something of a surprise.

STOCK FALLING

Damian Suarez: The experienced right back had a real chance of starting at right back. But he ran into muscular problems, and with so many defenders nursing injuries, coach Diego Alonso could not take the risk. Former MLS winger Diego Rossi is also unlucky to miss out.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Studying the training sessions to asses the fitness of key defenders such as Diego Godin and Ronald Araujo. Alonso is surely aware that, in a tough group, there is little margin for error. If he can get the balance of his side right, then Uruguay could do some serious damage. If not, a first-round exit beckons. — Tim Vickery


IRAN
Fixtures: England (Nov. 21), Wales (Nov. 25), United States (Nov. 29)

STOCK CLIMBING

Sardar Azmoun: Having long been Iran’s biggest injury concern, Sardar Azmoun was duly named in Carlos Queiroz’s final squad on Sunday evening — quashing worries that Team Melli might have been without their Bayer Leverkusen star. Queiroz surely would not have picked Azmoun is there was a chance he could miss all three group-stage ties, suggesting a return to the pitch could be imminent for the talented but oft-injured spearhead.

STOCK FALLING

Omid Ebrahimi: Unfortunately for Omid Ebrahimi, who played such a crucial role for Iran in qualifying with his consistent displays in the heart of midfield, a groin injury sustained in a recent friendly against Nicaragua has cost him his place in the Team Melli squad.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

The possibility that both Taremi and Azmoun could line up together for Iran is a huge boost, even if that might be come to fruition in time for their Group B opener against England. The two Europe-based Iranian marksmen combined should pose problems for any defence. The absence of Ebrahimi is a blow but Iran quite possibly have adequate cover in the likes of Saeid Ezatolahi, Ahmad Nourollahi and even the versatile Ehsan Hajsafi. — Gabriel Tan


SAUDI ARABIA
Fixtures: Argentina (Nov. 22), Poland (Nov. 26), Mexico (Nov. 30)

STOCK CLIMBING

Haitham Asiri: Still only 21 and with only seven caps to his name, Haitham Asiri was the big surprise in the Saudi Arabia squad for the World Cup. Despite his relative inexperience, the wide attacker has clearly done enough to catch the eye of Green Falcons coach Herve Renard, who ultimately plumped for him ahead of the more-seasoned Abdullah Al-Hamdan.

STOCK FALLING

Fahad Al-Muwallad: It initially looked as though the worst was over for Fahad Al-Muwallad after his 18-month ban last May for testing positive for a banned substance was reduced and then deemed to have been served sufficiently. But with the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) appealing the decision and a longer ban a possibility, Renard ultimately decided to remove Al-Muwallad as a result.

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

Given he would have been the joint-highest scorer at Renard’s disposal alongside Salem Al-Dawsari on 17 international goals, not having Al-Muwallad will hurt the Green Falcons but perhaps not as much, given they are likely to be on the back foot against Argentina, Poland and Mexico. — Gabriel Tan


QATAR
Fixtures: Ecuador (Nov. 20), Senegal (Nov. 25), Netherlands (Nov. 29)

HOW THE COUNTRY ARE LOOKING

The wait is nearly over for hosts Qatar to make their World Cup debut. There could also be many keen to put in writing them off however the Qataris are the present champions of their continent after profitable the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, and even made it to the final 4 of the CONCACAF Gold Cup in 2021 as an invited group. Whether or not or not they’ve what it takes to match it with Netherlands, Senegal and Ecuador in Group A stays to be seen however Qatar are greater than prepared. — Gabriel Tan