The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which thrilled the world over the past month, has finally come to an end. The 2022 Qatar World Cup, which was held after investing a whopping 300 trillion won and creating a stadium, airport, hotel, and transportation network, was held in the Middle East for the first time in history, as well as being held in November instead of summer, drawing attention.
◆ Incidents and more incidents The
Qatar World Cup is expected to be remembered as a tournament with many variables and incidents. Until now, the World Cup has been held in June-July, the European league break, but this time, it was held in November, when the European football season is in full swing, avoiding the heat in the Middle East. Also, as Qatar is a small country with a territory the size of Korea’s Gyeonggi-do, each team was able to focus on training while using the base camp as it is without having to move to the city between games. In addition, there was a positive aspect in terms of box office performance as it was possible to watch two games in one day due to the close proximity of the stadium.
There were also many unexpected results due to various changes. Among them, the most attention-grabbing point is that the center of the storm in the beginning of the tournament was Asia. The largest number of Asian Football Confederation (AFC) member countries (six countries) in World Cup history, including Korea, Japan, Iran, and Saudi Arabia, joined Qatar, the host country, which originally had automatic qualifiers, and Australia, which beat Peru in the intercontinental playoff.
Starting with Saudi Arabia’s 2-1 come-from-behind victory over their giant Argentina in their first game, Japan surprised the world by beating Spain and Germany. South Korea beat Portugal and Australia beat Denmark, making gamblers frown. AFC President Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa said after three teams, Korea, Japan and Australia, reached the round of 16, “I owe credit to all member associations that have raised the level of Asia.”
Outside of Asia, Morocco, an African country and Middle Eastern culture, had a blast in the semifinals. Morocco, which defeated Belgium in the group stage, defeated two Iberian countries, Spain and Portugal, to advance to the semifinals for the first time in Africa. Although they failed to achieve their goal of reaching the finals for the first time as a non-South American or European country by losing in the semi-final against France, it is still a brilliant achievement.
◆ Korea, prepare for the future after Bento
Korea achieved its goal of advancing to the round of 16 in this tournament for the first time in 12 years since the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. Reaching the round of 16 with a record of 1 win, 1 draw and 1 loss in Group H, where strong teams such as Uruguay, Portugal and Ghana were gathered, is a great achievement in itself, but there are many challenges ahead.
The first secret to making it to the round of 16 was that coach Paulo Bento and his division led the team for four years and implanted leading football into the Korean national team. Soccer fans were impressed by not only focusing on ‘first defense and then counterattack’, but also actively playing football in the attacking area.
However, as the renewal of the contract with Bento has failed, attention is also focused on future decisions. The Korea Football Association announced that it would complete the process of appointing a new coach by February of next year, but domestic coaches such as Kim Hak-beom and Choi Yong-soo were mentioned in the process, causing fierce opposition. Beyond the nationality issue of the command tower, voices are emerging that it is necessary to clarify what kind of soccer will be played through a coach with a certain philosophy.
In addition, conflicts between captain Son Heung-min (Tottenham Hotspur), players who participated in the World Cup despite being injured, and the trainer and medical team, which caused noise at the end of the tournament, are also considered issues that the Korea Football Association should adjust and resolve. It is pointed out that the operation based on the ‘system’, not the ‘fighting spirit’ of each individual, is urgent. As the number of participating countries is expected to increase, a plan is needed to secure competitiveness in the finals beyond passing through the Asian qualifiers.
◆ 48 countries gathered
In the 2026 World Cup in North and Central America, the number of participating countries will increase significantly from 32 to 48. As a result, FIFA revenue is expected to increase significantly, but instead, it is expected that there will be many changes in the way the World Cup finals are operated.
Since the 1998 World Cup in France, the 32-nation World Cup has been run according to a system in which four countries are divided into eight groups and the first and second place in each group advance to the round of 16. 스포츠토토
However, it has not yet been decided how the winner will be determined four years later. Initially, it seemed likely that the 48 teams would be divided into 16 groups of three, with the first and second place in each group advancing to the round of 32. In this method, the number of group stage matches for participating countries is reduced from three to two, and the lowest placed team is eliminated early.
However, after the board meeting on the 17th, FIFA President Gianni Infantino said, “We need to reconsider the idea of forming 16 groups of three teams. there is. This is because dramatic scenes can occur more often only when four teams play in the group stage.
By increasing the group stage from the current 8 to 12, a round of 32 tournament is held with the wild cards of the 8 best ranked countries in each group, or 48 countries are divided into 2 groups of 24 countries, and 4 countries in each group It is also being discussed that the winners of each group will advance to the final after dividing the teams into six groups and holding a preliminary round and a tournament.