The 2022 FIFA World Cup is finally kicking off! There will be only one match on opening day: Host nation Qatar welcomes “La Tricolor” South American opponent Ecuador.
How will the Qataris perform in front of the home support? Can the Ecuadorians disappoint the local supporters by defeating the host nation? This match could turn out to be one of the most important for deciding these teams’ fates in this World Cup!
If you have yet to set up your fantasy team for the 2022 World Cup, make sure you join before it is too late!
Qatar vs Ecuador
Date: 20 Nov 2022 (Sunday)
Time: 7 p.m. (Qatar time, GMT +3)
Venue: Al Bayt Stadium
|Qatar 4-3 Ecuador||Oct. 12 2018||International Friendly|
Both Qatar and Ecuador will have their full squads ready for the opening match without any injuries reported. Ecuador is expected to field a 4-3-3 formation and build attacking play from the flanks. Qatar will play a 5-3-2 and try to utilize counterattacking chances whenever possible. The young and talented Ecuadorians will finally have a big platform to showcase their high-intensity brand of football under Argentinian coach Gustavo Alfaro.
Gonzalo Plata (19), Pervis Estupiñán (7), Byron Castillo (6) and Moisés Caicedo (23) are the players to watch from the Ecuador team.
However, one major concern for Ecuador will be its poor away performance. Based on the result of the World Cup qualifiers, the Ecuadorians record fewer points whenever they play away, and today they are not only half-way around the world from home, but facing host nation Qatar.
Apart from the massive support from the fans, the Qataris will also have an advantage in that they are adapted to the local climate (expected 25C/77F, clear and dry at kickoff). It will be interesting to see how effective Qatar’s 5-3-2 formation will be against the Ecuadorians” flanking play.
Akram Afif (11) and Almoez Ali (19) will need to be clinical on the counter attack in order to help reduce the pressure on Qatari rearguard.
Since the Netherlands and Senegal are the favorites to advance from Group A, the matchup between Qatar and Ecuador becomes crucial if one is to survive. The loser of this matchup will have almost no chance left to qualify since its subsequent matches will only be more difficult, so we expect an exciting must-win match on the very first day!
Prediction: Qatar 3 - 1 Ecuador
If you have not registered yet, make sure to join NMA’s mini league (you must register on the FIFA site and create your team first):
League code: K2QVR5ZB
We’ve also dropped previews of every World Cup group:
In addition, we’ve published a Group Stage fixture difficulty table and a MD-1 Player Picks piece to help you target the best matchups and the best players for your fantasy squad. We’ve also put out a Chip Strategy article to help you formulate a plan for your boosters.
Finally, we’ll keep you abreast of team news, injuries, and suspensions as the competition unfolds. We’ll even post daily match reviews and a running table of important tournament statistics, so be sure to check in at www.nevermanagealone.com regularly!
Please log in, take our poll, and then join us as we call the live action together as the game unfolds!
Which team will win the opening match of the 2022 FIFA World Cup featuring Qatar and Ecuador?
This poll is closed