SuperSport viewers on DStv and GOtv will be counting down the days to the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, with the tournament set to run from 20 November to 18 December and provide the most thrilling distillation of ‘The Beautiful Game’.
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Group H at Qatar 2022 is one of the most diverse and interesting at the tournament. Uruguay represent the traditional powerhouse, having won the tournament twice back in the first half of the previous century, while Portugal are the European heavyweight still gunning for their first senior global title. South Korea are a highly competent and talented outfit, while Ghana are the somewhat unpredictable ‘jokers’ of the group: gifted and charismatic, but still searching for a true sense of themselves under coach Otto Addo.
Portugal / Nickname: The Navigators / Previous World Cup appearances: 7 / Best World Cup performance: Third place 1966 / World Cup record: P30 W14 D6 L10 GF49 GA35.
Uruguay / Nickname: La Celeste / Previous World Cup appearances: 13 / Best World Cup performance: Champions 1930 & 1950 / World Cup record: P56 W24 D12 L20 GF87 GA74.
South Korea / Nickname: The Taegeuk Warriors / Previous World Cup appearances: 10 / Best World Cup performance: Fourth place 2002 / World Cup record: P34 W6 D9 L19 GF34 GA70.
Ghana / Nickname: The Black Stars / Previous World Cup appearances: 3 / Best World Cup performance: Quarterfinals 2010 / World Cup record: P12 W4 D3 L5 GF13 GA16.
Players to watch
Joao Felix – While ‘CR7’ remains Portugal’s most notable attacker, the future lies with Felix and the 22-year-old will be looking to establish himself as the Navigators’ new main man.
Darwin Nunez – With Luis Suarez and Edinson Cabani both the wrong side of 35, Nunez is the new attacking talisman for Uruguay and Qatar 2022 could be the perfect stage for him to announce his arrival on the world stage.
Kim Min-jae – The experienced defender has been a revelation at Napoli this season and will bring plenty of form and confidence into Qatar 2022.
Mohammed Kudus – The exciting and unorthodox winger is doing great things for Ajax this season and is set to be a breakout star at the next World Cup.
Team to watch
Uruguay – The South American nation has always punched way above its weight in world football terms, given that they have a population of just 3.4 million people. The two-time World Cup champions don’t head to Qatar with the same momentum and buzz as fellow South Americans Brazil and Argentina, but they have a good blend of youth and experience, and relative freedom from the pressure of expectation.
“It is very difficult in a World Cup to anticipate what can happen,” said Uruguay coach Diego Alonso. "Any rival that touched us was going to be good and in a World Cup you can't choose. We face it with great optimism, with great enthusiasm and great desire, but always respecting what we have in front of us and trusting a lot in what we can do.”
Thursday 24 November
15:00: Uruguay v South Korea
18:00: Portugal v Ghana
Monday 28 November
15:00: South Korea v Ghana
21:00: Portugal v Uruguay
Friday 2 December
17:00: South Korea v Portugal
17:00: Ghana v Uruguay