Eamon Shaw’s FIFA World Cup Predictions

Eaton Red Ink staff reporter Eamon Shaw makes his FIFA World Cup predictions

Eamon Shaw’s FIFA World Cup Predictions

The 2022 FIFA World Cup has kicked off as 32 national soccer teams will battle it out on the world stage for the world’s ultimate prize. Four years ago, France lifted the ultimate prize and will be looking to defend their World Cup win. The top two teams from each group stage advance to the knockout stage. 16 teams will then battle into the quarterfinals, semi-finals, and finally the World Cup Final.

Let’s begin by listing all 32 teams that will be at the tournament. In Group A, the host nation Qatar is joined by Ecuador, Senegal, and the Netherlands. In Group B, England, Iran, Wales, and my home nation, the USA. In Group C, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, and Poland. In Group D, world champions France are joined by Denmark, Australia, and Tunisia. In Group E, Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, and Japan. In Group F, Belgium, Canada, Morocco, and Croatia. In Group G, South American Brazil is joined by Serbia, Switzerland, and Cameroon. Finally in Group H, Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, and South Korea. 

Now to predict the group stage of the World Cup. In Group A there are definitely some strong national teams. The top spot in the group for me has to go to the mighty Netherlands. The Netherlands breezed past qualification in the tournament and has some of the world’s best. For the second spot in group A, I have to go for African Champions Senegal. Senegal is a hard team to beat and will qualify for the knockouts. Ecuador and Qatar’s world cup will be over after just three matches. The Netherlands and Senegal will advance out of group A. 

In group B it will be a battle for who qualifies for the knockouts. The top spot has to go to England, who have some of the world’s best. England will regain form come world cup time and will top group B. The second spot in group B is a tricky one, though. The US has the youngest squad in Qatar but on their day can beat anyone. Iran and Wales are very underrated as well. I have to go with the US making it out of group B with the second spot. The US will get that result against England. Iran and Wales will be on the first plane back. England and USA will advance to the knockout stages. 

In group C, favorites to win the world cup, Argentina will easily top the group, but following behind them to advance is a tricky one to decide. Saudi Arabia will be last in the group, but either Poland or Mexico could advance. Mexico’s national team has had trouble getting results and qualified behind the US. I think that Mexico will have one of their worst World Cups yet. Poland will advance to the knockout stage behind Argentina. 

In group D, world champions France will look to defend their title. I don’t have France topping the group, though. Denmark is dangerous and plays really beautiful soccer. Denmark made the semifinals in the 2020 European Championships. Denmark will top the group. Following Denmark will be the Socceroos from Australia. The Aussies will surprise many in Qatar. The champions curse will strike France and for whatever reason the French won’t qualify. In group D Denmark and Australia will be advancing to the knockouts. 

Group E is arguably the group of death and will be a hard group to get out of. I have the Germans topping the group and it seems almost impossible that the Spanish don’t make it out of this group. Not much to group E. Germany and Spain qualify for the knockout stage. 

Group F might be a tough one to predict. I see Belgium easily topping the group, but that second spot is a tough one to predict. The Canadians will be at their first World Cup since 1986. The Croatians placed second in Russia four years ago, but their team isn’t the same as it was. I have Croatia getting that second spot. Belgium and Croatia will advance to the knockout stage. 

In group F, Brazil will top the group but following them for that second spot is a tricky prediction to make. Cameroon, Switzerland, and Serbia are all very good soccer teams. It will be about who shows up on the day. I have Cameroon last in the group, but that second spot will go to whoever wins against Switzerland and Serbia. Serbia and Brazil advance in the group stage.

In the final group, I see Uruguay topping the group. In second place in the group for me it has to be Portugal. With Cristiano Ronaldo, I really do not see any other way this group could end. Uruguay and Portugal advance to the knockout stage. 

It is time now to predict the knockout stages of the 2022 FIFA World Cup. 16 teams will battle it out for glory. In the first match of the knockout stage, the Netherlands and the USA will battle it out for a spot in the quarterfinals. The Netherlands will breeze past the US. Argentina and Australia will be a boring game because Argentina will obliterate the Socceroos. Germany and Croatia will battle it out too, but the Germans will come out on top. Brazil and Portugal will be a legendary round-of-16 match, but I have the Brazilians just edging it. 

On the other side of the bracket, England will beat Senegal, but just barely. Denmark and Poland will then play. I see Denmark winning this game easily. Another fantastic game where the Spanish take on the Belgians. I have Spain winning this game on penalties. In the last knockout stage game, Uruguay and Serbia will play. Uruguay will win this game fairly easily.

In the quarterfinals of the World Cup, expect the unexpected. In the first match, the Netherlands and Argentina will play each other. These two met in the semi-finals of the tournament eight years ago. I have Argentina taking control of the match and winning by a margin of maybe one or two goals. In the next match to meet up with Argentina in the semi-finals, I have Brazil getting their revenge against the Germans. Eight years ago, the Germans dumped Brazil out of the World Cup by a margin of six goals. The two South American nations will meet up in the semifinals of the World Cup. 

On the other side of the bracket, there is a possibility for some fantastic soccer matches. Denmark and England will face off. These two faced off in the European Championship semi-finals, and England got the best of Denmark. This time I predict that Denmark will win this game in penalties, sending the English home. The other quarter-final will be between Belgium and Spain. I see Belgium taking this game. The Belgians are underrated and placed third at the 2018 FIFA World Cup. 

There you go! We have made it to what I predict to be the final four of the FIFA World Cup. Argentina versus Brazil and Belgium versus Denmark. I see Brazil ending Lionel Messi’s hopes and dreams of a World Cup. I have Belgium beating Denmark in the semi-finals and the final of the 2022 FIFA World Cup will be Brazil vs Belgium. 

In the World Cup Final, I seriously see Brazil adding a sixth World Cup to their trophy case. This World Cup will be different. It will be the first winter World Cup and one that is tinged with human rights issues and allegations of corruptions. I expect a fantastic World Cup this year, but sometimes life is bigger than sports