In the previous article, I’ve shared you what World Cup Qualifiers are and how it works. Let’s explore more fixtures and groups of European Qualifying with my predictions about the possible group winners. 🤔
In Group A, there are five teams (not included Qatar because their matches are counted as friendly matches) fighting for the ticket to Qatar: Portugal, Serbia, Republic of Ireland, Luxembourg and Azerbaijan. It’s clear that Portugal will be either the group winner or the second place with their gold generation: Bernardo Silva, João Félix, Rubén Dias,… The main battle will be between Serbia (30th in FIFA ranking) and Rep. of Ireland (42th in FIFA ranking). For me, Serbia will finish in the second position.
Moving to Group B, Spain, Sweden, Greece, Georgia and Kosovo will have to struggle with each other. Spain certainly will get the ticket to World Cup 2022 while Sweden and Greece are the two nominees for the second position. With the return of Zlatan Ibrahimovíc, Sweden is likely to do that.
In Group C, without doubts, Italy and Switzerland will easily be on top of the table. Italy with Roberto Mancini is showing their revival in recent matches. Switzerland with players in good form like Yann Sommer, Nico Elvedi,… will take the second place.
Group D includes France, Ukraine, Finland, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kazakhstan. The 2018 World Cup winner France clearly has advantages when they only meet weaker opponents. For me, France will finish in 1st position and Ukraine will finish in 2nd position.
In Group E, Belgium, which’s currently at the 1st position in FIFA ranking, will go to the next round if nothing special happens. Wales (18th position) and Czech Republic (42nd position) will fight for the second position. In my prediction, Czech Republic will win the battle.
Group F is the hardest group to predict because every team in the group is quite strong as each other. Denmark (12th position), Austria (23rd position) and Scotland (42nd position) will have to bawl each other hard if they want to get the tickets. I believe that Denmark with a good-quality squad will finish on top of the table, following Scotland in the second position.
Group G is also hard to predict, Netherlands is playing not very well since Ronald Koeman resigned while Turkey and Norway’s squad include many stars that are having their best performances this season. For me, De Boer’s side will still manage to finish on top of the table with a few struggles, Norway will finish in the second position.
roup H, which is not easy to choose the winner, contains Croatia (11th position), Slovakia (34th position), Russia (39th position), Slovenia (62nd position), Cyprus (100th position) and Malta (176th position). I believe this group will be the most competitive group in the European Qualifying. In my prediction, Croatia will become the group winner as Russia will become the group runner-up.
Group I is also an interesting group, I believe that many people have in their mind that England and Poland will get the two highest positions in the group but I think Hungary will make the difference. They got many stars in their squad: Peter Gulacsi, Willi Orban, Dominik Szoboszlai,… and all are in good form. Moreover, Ferencvaros – a Hungary football team – has got their ticket to Champions League this season by going through the play-off round. It will be fantastic if Hungary will show us “The Will of Hungary” in this qualification round.
In the last group, Group J, Germany will certainly dominate the group’s opponents like what their football club Bayern Munich did recently. Iceland and Romania will have to face each other for the second position and I will tip the scale to Iceland a bit.
nd don’t forget that two teams with the best UEFA Nations League performances that do not finish in the two highest positions in their qualifying group will be given a chance to play in the play-offs. For me, Wales and Austria are the most possible names.
Author: Kuyet @ TrophyRoom
Country Coefficients data from UEFA: https://www.uefa.com/memberassociations/uefarankings/country/#/yr/2021
Fifa Worldcup: https://www.fifa.com/worldcup/
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