England in ‘Group of Death’ at 2022 World Cup – new study suggests 1 month ago

England in ‘Group of Death’ at 2022 World Cup – new study suggests

Gareth Southgate’s men officially have the toughest route through based on FIFA rankings – but not everyone is convinced

A new study suggests England could be in the ‘Group of Death’ at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar this winter.

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Based on FIFA rankings, the Three Lions will statistically face some of the most gruelling competition in the tournament, while Spain, who are in a group with Germany, Japan and Costa Rica, should have an easier ride.

Gareth Southgate’s men were drawn in a group with Iran and the USA at a star-studded ceremony held at the Doha Exhibition and Convention Center in April.

Wales joined the group after they narrowly beat Ukraine thanks to an Andriy Yarmolenko own goal.

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FIFA ranks all of the Group B teams within the top 25 nations in the world in its official rankings.

England (ranked 5th) will play Iran (ranked 23rd) on 21st November before taking on the USA (ranked 14th) on 25th November and Wales (ranked 19th) on 29th November.

This theoretically puts them in the Group of Death, according to analysis from Tech Data, which has ranked all the World Cup groups in order of their difficulty.

Spain will compete in the second-hardest group despite being drawn against previous World Cup winners Germany, while Belgium and Brazil should also have an easier ride through.

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The Netherlands, who have been grouped with Senegal, Ecuador and Qatar, officially have the easiest World Cup group.

Several people have posted their disbelief that Group B is really the hardest group,  with Mahyar Tousi saying FIFA must be "trolling us".

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Others, meanwhile, have pointed to Iran’s dubious human rights record, which could literally make this the Group of Death.

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