The Qatar 2022 World Cup has reached the Round of 16 and as this particularly unique tourney is on a fast track the Group Stage games ended today and the knockout round games begin tomorrow. Below are Papa’s quick predictions on how the eight matches will pan out.
Tomorrow the Dutch play the USA and Papa sees this as the Americans’ big opportunity to place their global marker, a chance to make a statement that they are here and are for real. Prediction USA—2—v—1—Holland.
The day’s second match should be a walkover with Argentina defeating Australia comfortably 2-0.
The next match is to be played Sunday and features the heavily favored French and the underdog Polacks. The French should win this match comfortably 2-0.
The second Sunday match is between the equally heavily favored English and the proud Senegalese. The game should be easy for England but nothing ever is for them so their win will likely be a 2-1 victory.
On Monday Croatia and Japan play and this is where the willy Samurai meet their match against the “don’t-even-try-it” Croatians who win 2-1 with more ease than the score line suggests.
Monday’s second game pits overall tourney favorite Brazil against the surprising South Koreans. Unfortunately for the Asians the Brazilian first string emerges again for this match and a very comfortable 3-0 win ensues.
On the last day of the Round of 16, the heavily favored Spanish team wins a very close match against the alleged minnows Morocco, who as Africa’s and Islam’s last remaining team plays as if at home and makes the New Spain sweat out their 2-1 win.
The last match of the Round of 16 pits the favored Portuguese against the game Swiss who always make life tough for the Iberians. The Navigators, though, come out with their full regalia of galleons and make short work of their opponents winning 3-1.
If these predictions hold, we would be seeing the following quarterfinal matchups: the USA v Argentina, Croatia v Brazil, with the winners meeting in the first semifinal. Then, England v France, and Spain v Portugal with the winners meeting in the second semifinals. Papa will have another, more in depth set of predictions for the quarterfinals.
Photo: Official Qatar 2022 World Cup tournament ball, Shutterstock ID: 2180628889, by kovop58.