England, Brazil, France: Which 2022 World Cup favourite has the best starting XI? | OneFootball
England, Brazil, France: Which 2022 World Cup favourite has the best starting XI?
The 2022 World Cup is now only a year away.
Thirteen teams have now booked their place at the international showpiece out in Qatar, with 19 spots left to play for.
Eight of the 10 favourites to win the tournament have secured their place, with only Italy and Portugal facing the unenviable task of battling it out in the dreaded play-offs.
So with the World Cup fresh in the mind after November's international break, we've decided to have a go at ranking the 10 favourites by what we feel are their best starting XIs.
Some bold calls have been made and if either Italy or Portugal don't end up qualifying in March, we can only apologise for jumping the gun a tad early here.
We may have ranked Holland 10th, but that doesn't mean their XI is poor - far from it. In the form of Virgil van Dijk, Frenkie de Jong and Memphis Depay, the Dutch possess some serious players. Nevertheless, you feel there's not quite enough there yet for the nation to challenge for World Cup glory.
In Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal have arguably the greatest international player in history and they also possess an array of Premier League stars. But the midfield isn't exactly the strongest and the defence is still heavily reliant on 38-year-old warhorse Pepe, which isn't exactly ideal.
Belgium are still the number one ranked team in the world, however, their XI isn't as scary-looking on paper as it was back at the 2018 World Cup. The back-line is noticeably weaker, while Eden Hazard's decline doesn't help matters either. The only reason the Red Devils sit ahead of Portugal is the dynamic duo of Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku.
After a woeful showing at the 2018 World Cup, Argentina are back as Copa America champions and for the first time in years, they have a well-balanced team that's both brilliant and suits talisman Lionel Messi perfectly. Sure, it's not an XI with a superstar in every position, but La Albiceleste are a very good side right now and haven't lost in 27 matches.
Germany struggled for a bit under Joachim Low, but the team was always magnificent on paper and now that Hansi Flick appears to have got Die Mannschaft firing again, they will be a formidable prospect once again out in Qatar. That forward line really is spectacular.
Italy's team is great, of that there's no doubt, but we can see them struggling to replicate their Euro 2020 success out in Qatar (if they qualify). They're perhaps a tad too reliant on the likes of Leonardo Bonucci, although when you've the likes of Nicolo Barella, Lorenzo Insigne and Federico Chiesa, anything is possible.
Perhaps the most controversial ranking. However, Luis Enrique's Spain side are continually improving and in our opinion, their team just looks slightly superior to those above. An exciting, young and - above all - fluid forward line ahead of arguably international football's finest midfield trio? Now that's a recipe for success.
Brazil cruised through 2022 World Cup qualifying and their team is sublime. There isn't the plethora of attack-minded superstars from yesteryear, but the South American nation's side ticks all the boxes necessary and they'll be incredibly tough to stop out in Qatar - especially if Neymar is fit and firing.
On paper, there's not much to dislike about England's XI - if anything at all. It's a team that couples youth and experience perfectly, with the likes of Phil Foden and Jude Bellingham primed to take international football by storm. For the first time in decades, the Three Lions really are a force to be reckoned with.
Quiz: Can you name the footballer based on their Wikipedia page?
1 of 15
Who moved from Barcelona to Real Madrid in 2000?
Luis Enrique Luis Figo Javier Saviola Cristiano Ronaldo
- Argentina Football
- Belgium Football
- Brazil Football
- England Football
- France Football
- Germany Football
- Portugal Football
- Spain Football
- World Cup
- share on Facebook
- share on Twitter
- share on WhatsApp
- share on Linkedin
- share on Flipboard
- share on Email
- Cristiano Ronaldo vs Lionel Messi: Frank Lampard admits to changing his mind during Q&A
- Liverpool legend Jamie Carragher's hilarious US accent during Champions League coverage
- Ben Foster: YouTubers ChrisMD & Miniminter took on Premier League GK in shooting challenge
- Man Utd next manager: Ranking every candidate from ‘Give him the job’ to ‘Worse than Ole’
- Micah Richards & Roy Keane: Golden TV moment when ex-Man City & Man Utd stars clashed in 2020
Interested in: Arsenal, Barcelona, Boxing
Danny Ryan is a Senior Writer and Boxing Lead at GiveMeSport. He's had the pleasure of interviewing the likes of Tyson Fury, Gary Lineker, Amir Khan, Lennox Lewis, Joe Root, David Haye, Frank Warren, Kell Brook & Joseph Parker. He once got Eoin Morgan to commentate on THAT Super Over and is an above average FIFA player.