The most popular sports event in the world is starting soon, and most countries already announced their teams for this competition. Fans from all over the world are already dealing with calculations and researches related to who has the best chance to win this tournament.
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We all know that football is the most popular sport in Europe and South America. Therefore, it is not a surprise that the main favorites are from these countries. On the other side, there are some great teams in Asia as well. We are going to introduce you to the history of Asian teams in FIFA World Cups.
What Are The Best Asian Teams?
First of all, we have to mention that none of the Asian teams have ever managed to win this tournament. The best countries from this continent are South Korea, Japan, Saudi Arabia, and Iran. Even though they never won a trophy, they have a long history of decent results.
We will start with Japan. This is going to be their seventh World Cup. The interesting fact is that they didn’t manage to qualify for a long time until the one in France in 1998. Since then, they are in the group on every of these events. Their biggest success is from 2002 when they got to the second stage, and they lost in the play-off from Paraguay.
They have a decent team for the following competition, with some great players like Tomiyasu from Arsenal, experienced Yuto Nagatomo, Minamino, Kamada, Wataru Endo, and more. Most people think that they won’t manage to pass the group state due to very difficult group with Germany, Spain, and Costa Rica. However, surprises are always possible.
South Korea is the best Asian club that will play in the following tournament. They also have a great history, especially when it comes to the one in 2002 when they were hosting it. It was a huge surprise since they reached the semi-finals. The best player at that time was Park Ji Sung. When it comes to the 2023 squad, the biggest name is Son Heung-min from Tottenham.
There are other great players as well, like Hwang Ui-jo, Hwang Hee-chan, Kim Min-jae, and more. They have top players on key positions like defending, midfield, and attack. Still, their group is challenging since it will be difficult to beat Ghana, Portugal, and Uruguay.
When it comes to Iran, it would be a surprise to see them pass the group stage. However, they are capable of making a surprise, especially because they have a strong defense style. Therefore, it will be very difficult for Wales, the USA, and England to play against them. The best players in the team are Azmoun, Taremi, Ghoddos, and Jahanbakhsh.
It will be even more difficult for Saudi Arabia since most of their players are from the domestic league. However, that can be a surprising element as well. Other teams in their group are Poland, Argentina, and Mexico. The host of the tournament is in similar position. Still, they have slightly easier group. Also, there is the motivation since they are the hosts.
Who Is The Main Favorite?
There are some well-known names that are always among the main favorites for each World Cup, such as Brazil, Argentina, Germany, and France. The situation is similar this year. One of the best teams is surely Brasil. They have a powerful squad, but what is even more important is that they have a strong bench with a lot of excellent options for each position.
For example, they have Allison and Ederson as goalkeepers, and these two are among the best players in the world in this position. The attack is especially strong with a wide range of top stars like Neymar, Rodrygo, Vinicius Junior, Raphinha, Gabriel Jesus, Martinelli, and more.
The Argentina is another leading favorite. They are waiting to win this trophy for a long time. They also have excellent depth in their squad with lots of options for each position. We will see whether Messi and the rest of players will finally win in the final stage.
The winner of the previous tournament, France, is again listed as the top 5 favorites. There were not many changes made except that we won’t see Kante who is injured, but Benzema will be playing. Germany may appear slightly weaker when compared to previous World Cups. However, we all know how good their national team can be in terms of a good strategy and attractive attacking style.
Another country that we have to mention in England. They are also waiting for a very long time to win the World Cup. Also, they have some of the best players in the squad, like Harry Kane, Jack Grealish, Trent Alexander Arnold, Mason Mount, Phil Foden, Nick Pope, and more. This squad will be capable to play against the main favorites, and even reaching the final state, which won’t be a huge surprise.
There are some potential surprises as well. First of all, we have to mention Croatia that reached the final stage in Russia 2018. They have a decent team this year also. Another team that can surprise is Serbia. They have some top stars in the team, like Dusan Tadic, Dusan Vlahovic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic, and more. The US squad is also very interesting. They have a lot of young stars and very talented players like Giovanni Reyna, Aaronson, Sargent, Pulisic, McKennie, and more.
When we compare the squads of Asian teams with other ones from Europe, America, and Africa, it is easy to assume that passing the group for any Asian team will be a very difficult task. However, this game is always full of surprises, and maybe some of them might managed to pass the group stage and win some of the favorites in the play-off.