As the FIFA World Cup 2022 Round of 16 progress, fans across the globe are seen rooting for their favourite players to perform next week. This World Cup has had its share of excitement since the first round of group stage matches itself wherein Saudi Arabia defeated Argentina by 2-1 to heavy weights Germany and Belgium already being knocked out of the group stage matches. This season also witnessed the first instance of a female referee officiating a match.
The tournament also witnessed major upsets like Tunisia defeating France by 1-0, Japan defeating Germany and Spain 2-1 each and Morocco defeating Belgium 2-0 among others. As the journey to the top enters its final swing, sports aficionados are at the edge of their seats to see the legends of Football play head-to-head. While it is the last world cup for football legends Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar Junior, it also happens to be a first for emerging players like Gakpo, Foden, Pedi and Gavi among others.
Turning the heat up, here are 6 players to look out for in the next week.
Lionel Messi: Widely regarded as one of the GOATs, Messi proves to be a prolific goal scorer and master playmaker. Argentina suffered a rather surprising loss in their opening match against Saudi Arabia. The team bounced back in the next match against Mexico wherein Messi scored his second goal of the tournament. In the third match against Poland, even after missing a penalty, Messi inspired Argentina towards a 2-0 win subsequently qualifying for the round of 16.
Cristiano Ronaldo: The first player to score in 5 Football World cups, CR7 started his 2022 World Cup fandom while scoring a penalty against Ghana. After winning the European championship in 2016, will Ronaldo be able to make an exceptional addition to his shrined cabinet of trophies as this could be his last World Cup appearance? After having a goal taken away from him, Ronaldo seems eager to prove the haters wrong in Portugal’s next match against South Korea.
Neymar Júnior: Outstanding goal scorer and playmaker of Brazil, Neymar Junior will be seen performing and bringing the glory of the FIFA World Cup after twenty years. Having missed two of the group-stage matches due to his recent ankle injury, Brazil is confident that Neymar will be making a comeback for the Round of 16.
Kylian Mbappé: France and PSG’s shining star is considered to be the best young talent of this generation. Struggling with their injury-hit squad, France will look up to Mbappé to sail the team across and defend their World Cup Title. Having scored three goals in the group stages, Mbappé is lightening up the World Cup with his terrific performance as a forward. France will be facing Poland in the round of 16.
Philip Foden: Midfielder for Premier League club Manchester City and the England national team. He is considered one of the best young players in the world. After not being selected in the playing 11 for the first two matches, Foden inspired England in a 3-0 victory over Wales in their last group stage match, supporting them to qualify for the next stage. England will be facing Senegal in their next match.
Cody Gakpo: The rising star of the Netherlands has already taken the World cup by storm by scoring three goals in three matches against Senegal, Ecuador and Qatar. The 23-year-old PSV star will look to continue with his football form in the knockout round against the USA. After not being able to qualify for the 2018 Russia World Cup, Gakpo and Netherlands will hope to make history by winning the World Cup for the very first time.
Will these players live up to the hopes of millions of fans? There’s an exciting week for football ahead, so tune into MTV HD, Sports18 and JioCinema and watch the FIFA World Cup 2022, LIVE!
Round of 16
Netherlands Vs USA
Today, 8:30 pm
France Vs Poland
Tomorrow, 8:30 pm
Argentina Vs Australia
Tomorrow, 12:30 am
Japan Vs Croatia
Monday, 5th December, 8:30 pm
England Vs Senegal
Monday, 5th December, 12:30 am
Morocco Vs Spain
Tuesday, 6th December, 8:30 pm
Brazil Vs south Korea
Tuesday, 6th December, 12:30 am
Portugal Vs Switzerland
Wednesday, 7th December, 12:30 am