The 2022 FIFA World Cup is just around the corner, and qualified nations are already in the heat of preparation to put a strong showing come November. Thirty-two participating teams from 5 regions will battle it out for the prestigious trophy, and fans in Southeast Asia are already anticipating great matches right when the group stage begins. And those who engage in soccer betting in Singapore and Malaysia can already start placing their wagers on various betting options available in the market.
And although fans and bettors are already looking at the potential winners of the competition, it is also worth looking at the potential winners of the eight groups. Some of the best teams in the world are drawn in one group, significantly increasing the excitement of the group stages.
So, if you are looking to place bets on whom you think will win each group, here are the current favourites to dominate the group stages.
As the first Asian host since 2002, Qatar will look to put a strong showing in their World Cup debut. Led by 25-year-old Akram Afif and team captain Hassan Al-Haydos, the team managed by Spain national Felix Sanchez will make their presence felt and put a strong showing as one of the only six Asian teams in the competition. However, despite being the tournament hosts, they will have their hands full as they need to give all they have to make it past the group stage.
Being drawn to a group that features three teams in the top 20 and a strong South American squad, Qatar’s chances are looking bleak as of writing. Despite being the lowest ranked team in their region, Ecuador managed to perform well during the CONMEBOL qualifiers. They out-qualified Peru, Colombia, and Chile, which are in the top 30 of the world rankings.
Meanwhile, Senegal just got a sensational run during the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations, beating Mo Salah-led Egypt in the finals to win the trophy. A month after, they defeated Egypt again during the CAF qualifiers, securing a seat in the World Cup. A team with some household names like Sadio Mane and Kalidou Koulibaly will look to dominate and push for their best World Cup finish in decades.
But speaking of household names, the Dutch team is the favourite to win this group for a reason. The 8th-ranked team is composed of some of the best players in the world, such as Virgil Van Dijk, Memphis Depay, and Frenkie De Jong. The team has been runners-up in the tournament three times and will now try to finally win the gold with their firepower and robust defensive line.
If you are looking for what would be one of the most competitive groups out there, then Group B should be on your list. All four teams in this group are ranked within the top 25, and all showed glimpses of strength in recent showings. As the top-ranked team in Asia, Iran managed to dominate the third round of the AFC Qualifiers to book a seat in their third-straight World Cup. However, their history in the tournament is not that great, making them the underdogs of their group.
Wales made history recently by getting past Austria and Ukraine in the qualifiers to finally book their seat in the World Cup after more than six decades. This will be the first time superstar Gareth Bale will see World Cup action, and they will be treated to highly competitive matches right from the get-go.
But the two favourites to win the group are USA and England. The American team will parade what many experts consider their best team to date, which is more likely enough to get them into the Round of 16. However, the team’s lack of experience in international tournaments might play a massive role in how the matches will be played, allowing England to cruise past the group stages to win Group B.
The 2020 Euro runners-up will push for their second World Cup title, which they last won in 1966 when England hosted the tournament. A mixture of young guns and seasoned veterans, led by the world-class striker and team captain Harry Kane, can help manager Gareth Southgate clinch three easy wins in the group stages.
Storylines have always been an essential part of competitive sports, and it definitely adds excitement to each league. And one team everyone will have their sight on for the upcoming tournament is Argentina, which can be considered one of the most potent squads around the globe.
Led by worldwide icon Lionel Messi, Argentina will look to avenge their finals loss in 2014 and early exit in 2018 to bring back the trophy to South America finally. Like his peers Neymar and Cristiano Ronaldo, the upcoming competition is Messi’s last chance for glory. The World Cup title has always been elusive to the Argentinian superstar, but they will look to ride their current 32-game winning streak and finally try to win the tournament this year.
With Argentina looking as the lock winners of Group C, two teams will try to make the impossible happen and try to snatch the first spot come November. Mexico barely reached the knockout stage in 2018, thanks to South Korea eliminating defending champions Germany.
However, Mexico got knocked out in the Round of 16 once more, making it their 7th-straight finish in the first round. Veterans like Raul Jiminez and Hirving Lozano can help the Mexicans break the “Quinto Partido” curse. However, the firepower Robert Lewandowski can bring to the Polish team should not be overlooked. Despite going scoreless in 2018, Lewandowski is still a capable striker who can score at will, which might be enough for Poland to surprise everyone by winning Group C.
The reigning champions will face familiar foes in Group D as three teams in this group are also drawn together in 2018, with Tunisia replacing Peru as the other nation. And although Tunisia and Australia can still provide a decent fight in the group, the battle for the top spot of Group D is still considered between Denmark and France.
After a scary cardiac arrest during Denmark’s Euro 2020 match against Finland, Cristian Eriksen will look to return to national team duties in November. Eriksen’s return is a massive boost for the nation, giving them an experienced player who can creatively create many chances from the midfield. Denmark’s 4.00 odds in a sportsbook in Malaysia and Singapore can reflect their chances of winning the group, especially since they managed to get a draw against France in 2018.
Meanwhile, the French national team is expected to dominate the group again, something previous champions failed to do during their title defences. The Les Blues have more than enough arsenal and depth in their squad, all of which can contribute to France’s easy journey in the group stages. The continual growth of Kylian Mbappe can also be a game-changer for the Frenchmen, who will look to clinch their third overall World Cup trophy.
The prestigious FIFA World Cup preparation is well underway, with teams already beefing up their lineup to field their best squad possible. The draw for groups already showed soccer fans how things might play out. Moreover, those who engage in online betting in Singapore and Malaysia can already start formulating strategies to maximize the budget they will use for betting. These are just the favourites to win the first half of the upcoming World Cup groups, and potential winners of other groups will be tackled in a separate article.
Register now at CM2Bet, a reliable digital platform for football betting in Malaysia and Singapore. You can place your wagers for various 2022 World Cup betting options with our catalog of sportsbooks. You can also try out our different online casino games, including blackjack, baccarat, and online slots.