2022 World Cup Review


Photo by Stephanie Sampaio

BHS students enjoying one of many World Cup watch parties that took place after school.

Rose Dibb, Staff Writer

Students around the world hid their phones under their desks, tuning into games being played in Qatar. Through what had to have been the longest four years ever in anticipation for another World Cup following a worldwide pandemic, the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar did not disappoint. With talk of rigged matchups, favorites out early, and an eruption of support for Argentina born Lionel Messi down the home stretch, there was no shortage of surprises. 

In the beginning of the group stage Argentina lost to Saudi Arabia; I thought this loss would set the tone for a World Cup full of underdogs and unexpected victors, which proved right. The United States shocked the world, and ignited a new found patriotism as people who think it’s “soccer” and not “football” began to pay close attention. The team made it to the knockout stage, and although conceding to the Netherlands proved they didn’t have what it takes yet, I believe the second youngest team to go to the World Cup this year showed its growing potential. To my surprise, the United States had the second largest fan showing at the games as well, only behind those from Qatar itself.

Where there were new favorites, there were also anticipated favorites who disappointed. The Brazilian team, a BHS favorite, lost in the round of eight to a solid Croatian team, leaving many students and fans very disheartened. For the first time ever Morocco made it to the semifinals, making them the first African nation ever to do so. Portugal lost to them in the quarter finals, disrupting the much wanted Portugal versus Argentina final.

Although many favorites were out of the competition earlier than expected, the France versus Argentina final had to have been the most exciting game I have ever watched. At first it appeared that Argentina was the clear winner, up 2-0 at half up until the 78th minute. Team leader, 24 year old Kylian Mbappe scored two goals in under two minutes, putting France back in the game. Argentina then scored in the 107th minute leaving the game 3-2, France didn’t give up though. A handball in the box led to a penalty kick, and Mbappe tied it up yet again in the 115th minute. Despite Mbappe’s valiant effort, Argentina still pulled out the victory in a shootout winning the game 4-3. 

The “…little boy from Rosario, Argentina,” won a World Cup. Messi has been a player to watch since his debut for Argentina back in 2005, thus making him a fan favorite during this tournament this year. At the age of 35 it appears Qatar will be his last World Cup, and finally he has brought it home for Argentina. They hadn’t won a World Cup since 1986 and are now victorious. Personally, although I would have loved to watch France win after Mbappe’s impressive comeback goals, I think it’s good Messi can now retire saying he won the tournament for his whole country. This World Cup shifted the tides for the future of the sport; Mbappe is set to be one of the greats, Morocco did what no African country has, and young teams like the United States now have a following.