World Cup Group G: Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland and Cameroon

Remark

There’s a transparent favourite in Group G, and it’s the nation that has spent the higher a part of this yr atop FIFA’s rankings. Brazil is on the hunt for its sixth World Cup and has a deep, skilled squad able to compete for it. Who will problem the Brazilians for the group’s different spot within the knockout levels? Switzerland is contemporary off a memorable run at Euro 2020 and has risen all the way in which to No. 15 on this planet. Serbia was a shock qualifier from a crowded pot of European groups, and Cameroon has a historical past of constructing runs on the game’s largest stage.

Right here’s a better take a look at Group G, which kicks off Nov. 24 as Switzerland faces Cameroon and Brazil takes on Serbia.

This yr marks precisely 20 years since Brazil final lifted the Jules Rimet Trophy. The nation recognized for spearheading the “Jogo Bonito” — the “Beautiful Game,” a phrase popularized by Brazilian nice Pelé — gained its fifth World Cup in 2002 however hasn’t reached the match’s ultimate previously 4 editions. With maybe the deepest squad in your complete area and an skilled supervisor on the helm, top-ranked Brazil is anticipated to reach in Qatar as one of many favorites to win all of it.


Brazil is the winner of probably the most World Cups with 5 titles out of seven complete journeys to the ultimate.

Brazil 3, Czechoslovakia 1

Brazil 0 (3), Italy 0 (2)

Brazil is the winner of probably the most World Cups with 5 titles out of seven complete journeys to the ultimate.

Brazil 3, Czechoslovakia 1

Brazil 0 (3), Italy 0 (2)

Brazil is the winner of probably the most World Cups with 5 titles out of seven complete journeys to the ultimate.

Brazil 3,

Czechoslovakia 1

Brazil 0 (3),

Italy 0 (2)

It’d be arduous for any of the opposite 31 sides within the World Cup to match Brazil’s present run of type: “A Seleção” has gained or drawn 28 of its previous 29 matches, courting again to 2019. The lone loss got here in final summer season’s Copa América ultimate to rival Argentina, a 1-0 defeat on the well-known Maracanã in Rio de Janeiro.

Since that defeat in July 2021, Tite’s Brazil squad swept by CONMEBOL’s World Cup qualifying marketing campaign, incomes probably the most factors by any South American workforce since 2002. It gained 14 of its 17 matches — its first recreation towards Argentina was referred to as off after Brazilian well being officers took the sector and tried to arrest 4 Argentine gamers — and saved a close to hermetic protection, conceding just one objective at residence.

There are such a lot of Brazilian gamers getting high quality minutes on this planet’s prime leagues that it’s arduous to select only a few names to highlight. Various veterans return from earlier World Cup squads, from Chelsea’s Thiago Silva and Paris Saint-Germain’s Marquinhos on the again line to Liverpool’s Fabinho and Manchester United’s Casemiro within the midfield. Vinícius Júnior, a 22-year-old winger, was the star of final yr’s Champions League ultimate for Actual Madrid. Brazil additionally owns the enviable place of getting two world-class goalkeepers on its facet: Liverpool’s Alisson is the doubtless starter, however Manchester Metropolis’s Ederson can be out there for choice.


Neymar

30 years previous,

São Paulo, Brazil

Paris Saint-Germain

Neymar

30 years previous, São Paulo, Brazil

Paris Saint-Germain

Neymar

30 years previous, São Paulo, Brazil

Paris Saint-Germain

In a sport recognized for its stars, Neymar stays one in all its largest. Since his debut as a teen, he has grown into one of many world’s hottest athletes and continues to be the most costly participant in soccer historical past after his $263 million transfer to Paris Saint-Germain from Barcelona in 2017. It hasn’t all been clean crusing — he helped lead Brazil to its first Olympic gold at Rio 2016 but additionally has a predilection for over-the-top reactions and the occasional dramatic dive.

That mentioned, he’s nonetheless a fascinating attacker with the flexibility to rework video games: He was Brazil’s main scorer in qualifying with eight objectives and is already the nation’s second-leading all-time scorer, trailing solely the nice Pelé.

Serbia has reached three of the previous 4 World Cups — in 2006, 2010 and 2018 — however has but to advance out of the group stage in that stretch. It has performed the giant-beater earlier than (defeating Germany, 1-0, in South Africa) and has a squad stuffed with gamers plying their trades in Europe’s prime 5 leagues, however it’s nonetheless seeking to make its huge breakthrough at a serious match.


Qatar will probably be its third look in a World Cup as Serbia.

Qatar will probably be its third look in a World Cup as Serbia.

Qatar will probably be its third look in a World Cup as Serbia.

Within the 14 years it has performed underneath a completely unbiased flag, Serbia has reached the World Cup twice however has but to win a couple of recreation within the group stage. Its failed European Championship qualifying marketing campaign in 2020 marked a second for change — the Serbs misplaced to Scotland in a playoff penalty shootout, making them the continent’s solely squad at this World Cup that wasn’t at Euro 2020. Ljubisa Tumbakovic was sacked and changed by nationwide workforce hero Dragan Stojkovic, a star for Yugoslavia on the 1990 and 1998 World Cups.

Serbia’s hopes of qualifying straight for Qatar got here all the way down to a ultimate UEFA Group A match in November 2021 towards celebrity Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal in Lisbon. It led to thrilling vogue for the Serbs: After conceding within the second minute, they rallied to attain within the thirty third minute and saved Portugal away from objective for the remainder of common time. Aleksandar Mitrovic, the nation’s all-time main scorer, discovered the emotional winner within the Ninetieth minute to seal Serbia’s place on the World Cup.


Coach

Dragan Stojkovic

57 years previous

The Serbians are more likely to characteristic a mixture of skilled and younger expertise in Qatar. Captain Dusan Tadic (Ajax) and Sergej Milinkovic-Savic (Lazio) are fixtures within the nationwide workforce’s midfield. Fiorentina middle again Nikola Milenkovic is one in all greater than 10 gamers within the projected squad who play in Italy’s Serie A. Additionally in that class is 22-year-old striker Dusan Vlahovic, who has but to play in a serious worldwide match however had 4 objectives in Serbia’s qualifying marketing campaign and was one of the sought-after younger gamers in Europe earlier than signing with Juventus in January.


Aleksandar Mitrovic

28 years previous, Smederevo, Serbia

Fulham

Aleksandar Mitrovic

28 years previous, Smederevo, Serbia

Fulham

Aleksandar Mitrovic

28 years previous, Smederevo, Serbia

Fulham

Between Vlahovic and Mitrovic, Serbia has no scarcity of thrilling scoring expertise. Mitrovic is again within the Premier League with Fulham after a improbable 2021-22 season — he completed the marketing campaign with 43 objectives, probably the most by any participant in England’s trendy period. That prime-scoring type tends to hold over to Mitrovic’s position with the nationwide workforce: His eight objectives in qualifying tied for the third-most of any participant throughout UEFA’s 10 teams, and he scored 4 occasions in Serbia’s Nations League video games in September.

Switzerland was the shock of final summer season’s European Championship. The nation that hadn’t gained a knockout recreation in a serious match since 1938 lastly did so in thrilling vogue: rallying from a two-goal deficit to beat defending World Cup champion France on penalties, then taking Spain to a shootout within the quarterfinals. It’ll attempt to replicate a few of that magic in Qatar.


Switzerland

within the World Cup

Qatar will probably be Switzerland’s twelfth look of in a World Cup; it certified for every of the previous 5 tournaments.

Switzerland

within the World Cup

Qatar will probably be Switzerland’s twelfth look of in a World Cup; it certified for every of the previous 5 tournaments.

Switzerland

within the World Cup

Qatar will probably be Switzerland’s twelfth look of in a World Cup; it certified for every of the previous 5 tournaments.

The Swiss had been match mainstays within the World Cup’s early editions however have principally taken a again seat on the worldwide stage in current a long time. Up to now 5 years, although, they’d sturdy leads to main tournaments underneath Vladimir Petkovic: the knockout stage of the 2018 World Cup, the semifinal of the 2019 UEFA Nations League, a first-ever Euro quarterfinal in 2021. Petkovic left the nationwide workforce in July 2021 and was changed by Murat Yakin.

This yr, Switzerland was the victor of one of the entertaining qualifying teams in Europe. It completed atop Group C, drawing twice with Alpine rival Italy and conceding solely twice in eight video games. Its World Cup hopes rested on a end result between Northern Eire and Italy in November 2021, and when the previous earned a goalless draw — thus forcing the defending European champion to an ill-fated playoff — Yakin sent 20 pounds of Swiss chocolate to Northern Eire’s federation as a gesture of thanks.


Coach

Murat Yakin

48 years previous

Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka was a key scorer for Switzerland at each the 2014 and 2018 World Cups, whereas Breel Embolo (Monaco) led the way in which with three objectives throughout this qualifying marketing campaign. Striker Haris Seferovic, presently at Galatasaray in Turkey, had three objectives for the Swiss at Euro 2020. Yann Sommer had a summer season to recollect at that match, saving a penalty by France’s Kylian Mbappé within the spherical of 16 after which recording eight saves in further time alone towards Spain within the quarterfinal. In August, he set a Bundesliga file with a exceptional 19 stops in a single match for Borussia Monchengladbach.


Xherdan Shaqiri

31 years previous, Gjilan, Kosovo

Chicago Fireplace

Xherdan Shaqiri

31 years previous, Gjilan, Kosovo

Chicago Fireplace

Xherdan Shaqiri

31 years previous, Gjilan, Kosovo

Chicago Fireplace

Xherdan Shaqiri was accountable for one of the talked-about objectives of the 2018 World Cup: His Ninetieth-minute winner gave the Swiss an thrilling 2-1 win over Serbia within the group stage. (Shaqiri, an ethnic Albanian, made as many headlines for his celebration because the objective itself, and it’s value noting that he’ll face Serbia within the group stage once more this yr.) Since then, Shaqiri has gained a Champions League title with Liverpool and moved to the Chicago Fireplace in MLS as one of many league’s highest-paid stars. He was a key determine in Switzerland’s assault in World Cup qualifying and figures to be once more in Qatar.

The Indomitable Lions have a powerful historical past in terms of reaching soccer’s largest stage: They’ve certified for the World Cup eight occasions, probably the most of any African nation, and took England to further time in a well-known quarterfinal at Italy 1990. There’s no straightforward street out of the group into the knockout stage this yr, however there can’t actually be any counting out a workforce that reached Qatar in probably the most spectacular of fashions.


Cameroon

within the World Cup

Cameroon was a part of France till the 1962 World Cup. Since then, its greatest end result was reaching the quarterfinals at Italy 1990.

Cameroon

within the World Cup

Cameroon was a part of France till the 1962 World Cup. Since then, its greatest end result was reaching the quarterfinals at Italy 1990.

Cameroon

within the World Cup

Cameroon was a part of France till the 1962 World Cup. Since then, its greatest end result was reaching the quarterfinals at Italy 1990.

Cameroon’s winding street to qualifying for the World Cup began in February. Internet hosting the Africa Cup of Nations for the primary time since 1972, the nation misplaced to Egypt on penalties within the semifinal however gained a shootout towards Burkina Faso within the ensuing third-place match. That proved to be the ultimate recreation in cost for Toni Conceição, who had managed Cameroon for practically three years however reportedly had conflicts with among the workforce’s prime gamers.

Rigobert Tune, a former nationwide workforce captain, took over and in March helped the squad clinch its place in Qatar with a dramatic end within the ultimate spherical of qualifying. After Algeria gained the primary leg, 1-0, in Cameroon, the Indomitable Lions went on the street and shortly discovered an away objective of their very own. (In World Cup qualifying, FIFA’s rule on away objectives nonetheless applies.) With the mixture rating line even, Algeria scored within the 118th minute and appeared certain for Qatar — till Karl Toko Ekambi discovered the again of the web within the ultimate minute of stoppage time.


Coach

Rigobert Tune

46 years previous

Cameroon doesn’t have a protracted listing of European stars, nevertheless it has a stable mixture of gamers in among the continent’s prime leagues. Bayern Munich ahead Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting lined up for Cameroon on the 2010 and 2014 World Cups. Captain Vincent Aboubakar moved to the Saudi Premier League after a six-year stint in Europe however continues to be in sturdy type for his nationwide workforce: His eight objectives had been probably the most of any African participant at this yr’s Cup of Nations. Toko Ekambi, who performs for Lyon in France’s Ligue 1, had a standout match on his residence soil as properly, scoring 5 objectives throughout three matches.


André Onana

26 years previous, Nkol Ngok, Cameroon

Inter Milan

André Onana

26 years previous, Nkol Ngok, Cameroon

Inter Milan

André Onana

26 years previous, Nkol Ngok, Cameroon

Inter Milan

Goalkeeper André Onana made his worldwide debut as a 20-year-old and has steadily turn out to be one in all Cameroon’s prime gamers. At 26, he already has three Dutch league titles and begins in a lot of necessary European matches — together with a Europa League ultimate and the Champions League semifinals — underneath his belt after 5 full seasons at Ajax. He missed nearly all of the final season after being banned 9 months by UEFA for taking an unlawful substance, however he moved to Inter Milan (the Italian membership at which Cameroonian legend and present federation president Samuel Eto’o as soon as starred) this previous summer season.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *