Road to FIFA World Cup 2022: My take on the potential winners part 2

Aakash Rao
4 min readMay 12, 2022

Welcome back to my blog after a long time, and today we will be going through 5 more potential winner of this year’s World Cup.

Spain

Spain’s squad for the Euros

Spain have always been a massive footballing country, but they have been in a period of decline recently, falling from grace as their golden generation faded away from 2014. During the latest major tournament, the Euros, however, the Spanish team were surprisingly hard to beat and went deep into the tournament, eventually getting knocked out by Italy. Their team was very impressive despite the semi-final exit, and they will fancy their chances at the World Cup this year. They have a world-class manager, their new Barca midfield duo Gavi and Pedro, speedy wingers in Ferran Torres, Olmo and Adam Traore, and super centre-backs Pau Torres and Diego Llorente. Their squad is well-balanced with battle-hardened stalwarts and fresh youngsters, and Spain could very well be the dark horses of the Cup this year.

Potential Squad: De Gea, Robert Sanchez, Unai Simon, Alba, Azpiliqueta, Gaya, Laporte, Ramos, Diego Llorente, Marcos Llorente, Pau Torres, Thiago, Busquets, Reguillon, F. Ruiz, Koke, Olmo, Busquets, Pedri, Rodri, Morata, Traore, Moreno, Oyarzabal, Gavi and Ferran Torres.

Germany

Germany celebrating a goal in a FIFA qualifier

Germany and Brazil are arguably the biggest footballing nations ever, but if you asked me who’s more likely to win the World Cup this time, I’d say Brazil without any qualms. Germany have world-class players, just like Brazil, but their team has been in disarray since 2018. The situation has improved after Hansi Flick’s appointment, but they are still a shadow of the 2013–2014 Germany. This year, although Flick has a plethora of young talents to choose from, he should learn from his predecessor Joachim Low’s mistakes and call up both Muller and Hummels for the World Cup squads. Hummels has been quite good for Dortmund since his return, despite having lost a lot of his former speed, while Muller remains a creative beacon for Bayern Munich. Leroy Sane has done enough at Bayern to merit his inclusion as well, while Flick will also have some trouble choosing from young talents like Havertz, Werner, Wirtz, Adeyemi and more. Germany have plenty of talent to choose from, and if they play their cards right and play the ‘German’ way, they could go a long way in the tournament.

Potential Squad: Manuel Neuer, Kevin Trapp, Andre Ter Stegen, Schlotterbeck, Hummels, Ginter, Gosens, Sule, Klostermann, Halstenberg, Can,Rüdiger, Kimmich, Havertz, Kroos, Musiala, Hofmann, Neuhaus, Goretzka, Sane, Gnabry, Werner, Gundogan, Volland, Muller, Wirtz and Reus

Belgium

Belgium’s Golden Generation have failed to win anything despite many touting them to win multiple tournaments since 2016

Belgium are hardly a side with prestigious football heritage, yet this Belgium side have risen from the shadows to become their nation’s golden generation. However, they still have failed to reach a final of a major international tournament, despite coming close multiple times. Their team is waning, however, with many of their superstars either ageing or losing their form. Key player Eden Hazard will have to move from Real Madrid to get more playing time and prove that he isn’t finished, while Lukaku may have to cut short his fairytale return to Chelsea to get his scoring boots back. To conclude, while Belgium WILL challenge for the World Cup, don’t expect them to actually win it.

Potential squad: Courtois, Casteels, Kaminski, Denayer, Saelemaekers, Bornauw, Vertonghen, Alderweireld, Castagne, Meunier, Jordan Lukaku, Tielemans, Thorgan Hazard, Dendoncker, Vanaken, Trossard, Lokonga, Witsel, De Bruyne, Carrasco, Eden Hazard, Dries Mertens, Romelu Lukaku, Januzaj and Doku

Portugal

Portugal lining up against Ireland

Portugal have produced massive footballing talents throughout the years, from Deco to Ronaldo, to Pepe and Carvalho. However, as a nation, success at a major tournament was hard to get, till Ronaldo came. The GOAT has won both the Euros and the Nations League for Portugal, and will hope to experience more success at the world cup than the amount of success he is experiencing currently at Manchester United. Meanwhile, fellow Red Devils teammate Bruno Fernandes will hope to do much better than he did at the Euros with his national side, while young attacking talents Joao Felix and Diogo Jota will aim to bring their electric form for their club to the World Cup. In the end, Portugal will be eyeing at least a place in the final come November.

Potential Squad: Jose Sa, Rui Patricio, Diogo Costa, Nuno Mendes, Raphael Guerreiro, Jose Fonte, Pepe, Joao Cancelo, Ruben Dias, Ricardo Pereira, Goncalo Inacio, Moutinho, Bernando Silva, Bruno Fernandes, Danilo Pereira, Ruben Neves, Renato Sanches, Joao Paulhinha, Olivera, Trincao, Goncalves, Ronaldo, Jota, Felix, Andre Silva and Rafael Leao

That’s all for this article, and I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it. Look out for my next article, and till then feel free to check out my older articles right on Medium. Till then, Adios!

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Aakash Rao

An avid Manchester United fan and football/music blogger!