The final round of international play before the 2022 World Cup in Qatar has wrapped up, and there is so much to talk about from the competitions. There were teams that came away from the break looking primed for a World Cup, while others are beginning to worry about their preparations.
Brazil, Argentina, and Netherlands Win The Week
Brazil walked away as the biggest winner from the break. Brazil look to be the world cup favorite at the moment after defeating Ghana 3-0 and then Tunisia 5-1. With Neymar having arguably his best start to the season of all time, and the likes of Raphina, Vincius Jr, and Richarlison playing some of their best football, they have a scary attack coming in for the World Cup.
Argentina might not have faced the toughest competitions during the break, but they dominated both matchups, and that’s all they can do. Argentina defeated Hondourous and Jamacia both by a scoreline of 3-0, with Lionel Messi scoring a brace in both matches. Argentina have not been beaten in 35 matches, and with this World Cup likely being Messi’s last, a fairy tail ending for their greatest of all time looks incredibly possible.
The Netherlands won their UEFA Nations League group and looks to be one of the most complete sides in the world. The Netherlands defeated Poland 2-0 and then Belgium 1-0. The Netherlands do not have the world-class talent in every position (but they do in some) that some nations will in the World Cup, but they are playing team football, and if they keep this up, they look like a top contender to win the World Cup in Qatar.
England, France, and the United States Leave A Lot of Questions
England is one of the most talented sides going into the World Cup, but the three lions have not performed as such. They will be happier with their comeback tie against Germany, but with a loss to Italy, fans began booing Gareth Southgate, and after his omission of Trent Alexander-Arnold in either game, fans are beginning to question if Southgate’s tactics are good enough.
France’s performance on the break isn’t all of the reason why they are a loser. It is the turmoil surrounding France football from the Killian Mbappe and French Football Federation Fiasco as well as everything surrounding Paul Pogba to all the injuries they are dealing with. The reigning world champions are not coming into this World Cup looking their best.
The USMNT was arguably the biggest disappointment from the international break. With a 2-0 loss to Japan and a 0-0 draw with Saudi, the USMNT did not look inspired whatsoever. The attack looked awful, and they do not look like a side that has much hope for a long World Cup run at the moment.