World Cup 2022 Group D: What to expect from reigning champion France and Eriksen’s Denmark?

With defending Champion France, Denmark, and Tunisia and the winner of Inter-Continental Playoff 1, Group D has clear favorites in terms of qualification. The last team of the group will be decided after the Inter-Continental Playoff 1 between Peru and Australia or the United Arab Emirates. The winner will be included in Group D.

While Denmark looks most likely to be the second team to join the knockout phase on paper, France is most likely to top Group D and qualify for the Round of 16.

France

The Qatar World Cup in 2022 will be the 16th World Cup of France. This one will be the Reigning world champions’ seventh successive participation in the competition since when the country won its first title. It gained the title by defeating Brazil in the finals of 1998 in Paris.

France and Denmark

After finishing as the winner of UEFA Group D, Didier Deschamp’s France qualified for Qatar 2022. The winner of the Inter-Continental Playoff 1 will be the defending champion’s first opponent in the competition.

This year one of the most star-studded squads in world football is in Les Blues’ pocket. With players like Kylian Mbappe, Karim Benzema, Paul Pogba, Raphael Varane, Dayot Upemecano and Benjamin Pavard, France has world-class players in every position. Among them, Benjamin Pavard was the winner of the goal of the tournament in 2018. Eduardo Camavinga and Aurelien Tchouameni, who are comparatively young, will also add depth to the squad.

France had passed their qualifying campaign in a breeze. It was undefeated in the eight matches it played. France won five, drew three, and scored 18 goals while conceding just three.

Manager: Didier Deschamps

France’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
66 34 13 19 120 77

Denmark

Denmark will be playing its sixth World Cup in Qatar. In the 2008 edition, it reached the Round of 16. For the second time in history, it is contesting successive World Cups. The 1998 and the 2002 editions of the World Cups were the last time Denmark played successively.

After finishing as the winner of UEFA Group F, Denmark qualified for Qatar 2022. It will face Tunisia in its first match.

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen will be the star of the show; the player suffered a cardiac arrest against Finland in the European Championship in 2021; after his return to the national team, he came into the spotlight by scoring goals against Netherlands and Serbia in consecutive matches.

Players like Simon Kjaer and Andres Christensen will provide stability in the backline, while Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg will be an important presence in midfield. They will also look to create chances for the forwards like Martin Braithwaite, Jonas Wind, and Yussuf Poulsen.

After playing 10 matches in the qualifying campaign, it managed to win nine games. It conceded just three while scoring 30 goals.

Manager: Kasper Hjulmand

Denmark’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
20 9 5 6 30 26

Tunisia

After participating in the 2018 edition in Russia, this World Cup will be Tunisia’s second consecutive one and sixth overall participation.

Tunisia created history after becoming the first African team to score in a World Cup final when it made its World Cup debut in 1978. The game was the opening game against Mexico, and it managed to win by 3-1. Tunisia has never managed to participate in the knockouts phase of a World Cup.

In the Third Round of the CAF qualifiers, Tunisia defeated Mali (1-0 on aggregate). This win gives it the opportunity to qualify for the World Cup. It will face Denmark in their opening match.

The Tunisian national team has two noticeably good players, Youssef Msakni and Seifeddine Jaziri. Manchester United youth player Hannibal Mjebri will also be a great addition to the team.

In the World Cup Qualifying campaign, Tunisia scored 12 goals and conceded two. Among eight matches it played, it won five, drew two, and lost one.

Manager: Jalal Kadri

Tunisia’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
15 2 4 9 13 25

Peru

Among the five World Cups Peru played, it enjoyed its best-ever finish in a World Cup in 1970 when it finished seventh.

It just needs to bag a win to qualify for Qatar 2022. It will play against the winner of the Australia vs. the United Arab Emirates (UAE) match.

If it manages to win that match, it will be the final participant in Group D.

Manager: Ricardo Gareca

Peru’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
18 5 3 10 21 33

Australia

Among the five World Cups Australia played, it enjoyed its best-ever finish in a World Cup in 2006 when it managed to reach the round of 16.

Australia is two successive wins away to qualify for Qatar 2022. If it qualifies, then this will be Australia’s fifth successive World Cup. It needs to win against UAE and Peru to qualify.

Manager: Graham Arnold

Australia’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
16 2 4 10 13 31

United Arab Emirates

The 1990 edition of the tournament in Italy was the only time The United Arab Emirates (UAE) qualified for the World cup.

To qualify for the World Cup this time, UAE faces stiff competition from Australia and Peru. First, it needs to defeat Australia to qualify for the next stage, where it will play against Peru.

Manager: Bert van Marwijk

UAE’s World Cup record

Played Won Drew Lost GF GA
3 0 0 3 2 11

FIFA World Cup 2022 Group D fixtures and timings

Match Date Fixtures Time (IST) Venue
1 November 22 France vs. UAE/Australia/Peru 6:30 pm Education City Stadium
2 November 22 Denmark vs. Tunisia 3:30 pm Al Janoub Stadium
3 November 27 France vs. Denmark 00:30 am Lusail Stadium
4 November 26 Tunisia vs. UAE/Australia/Peru 9:30 pm Ras Abu Aboud Stadium
5 November 30 Tunisia vs. France 6:30 pm Education City Stadium
6 November 30 UAE/Australia/Peru vs. Denmark 3.30 pm Al Janoub Stadium

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