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World Cup Team of the Tournament


Goalkeeper: Emiliano Martinez (Argentina)

Aston Villa goalkeeper Emiliano Martinez wrote his name in the football history books when he saved a penalty for Argentina helping the South American side lift their third World Cup.

The Argentine found similar success in penalty shootouts throughout the tournament, with his brand of intimidation being especially present in the Quarter-final shootout against the Netherlands.

Overall, the keeper, who only recently became Argentina’s number-one choice, has impressed most this tournament. Perhaps his most important moment came in the dying minutes of extra time in the Final against France, where he blocked Kolo Muani’s shot to take it to penalties.

Right-back: Achraf Hakimi (Morocco)

PSG right-back Achraf Hakimi showed his class on the biggest stage for Morocco and helped the Atlas Lions defy all expectations and make the Semi-finals, where they eventually lost to 2018 winners France.

Hakimi’s impact at the World Cup was even so great that France switched their tactics in order to deal with both his impressive defensive work as well as his ability to advance the attack.

Overall, Hakimi’s great World Cup run can be perfectly encapsulated in his decisive penalty to send Spain home in the Round of 16.

Centre back: Romain Saiss (Morocco)

Another Moroccan in the defensive team of the tournament, Besiktas centre-back Romain Saiss was both the captain for the strong Moroccan side but also the defensive rock in their back line.

Before Saiss was sidelined by injury in the Semi-final against France, he was a key part of a team that had kept four clean sheets in five games.

Overall, Saiss proved himself on the biggest stage with consistently strong performances and making the captain role his own, leading his team, even from the touchline, to a historic finishing place for an African team.

Centre back: Josko Gvardiol (Croatia)

Josko Gvardiol has been one of the break-out performers of the 2022 Qatar World Cup, with his impressive performances at the heart of the Croatian backline.

The 20-year-old brought some youth to the centre-back pairing with veteran 33-year-old Dejan Lovren that kept two clean sheets and only conceded seven goals all tournament.

The centre-back, who currently plays his football in the Bundesliga for RB Leipzig, had a great tournament overall, constantly showing off his ability to read the game, as well as his strength and penchant for interceptions, it won’t be a surprise if a lot of the big clubs come knocking this summer.

Left-back: Noussair Mazraoui (Morocco)

Although injury would see him sidelined from the Semi-final against France, the Bayern Munich left-back made a big impression in Qatar.

Noussair Mazraoui was one of the stars of a surprising Morocco side, helping the Atlas Lions to an African team’s first-ever appearance in a World Cup Semi-final.

The injury he picked up kept him out of the team after the Round of 16 clash with Spain, but before that Mazraoui was a big part of the Moroccan defence that had only conceded a single goal up to the Semi-final despite facing teams like Croatia, Belgium and Spain.

Midfield: Antoine Griezmann (France)

Antoine Griezmann found himself in his second-ever World Cup Final in Qatar, despite being on the losing side this time and turning out a performance unlike the rest in his tournament, Griezmann still had an impressive tournament.

In his new role of a number ten for Didier Deschamps Griezmann is able to show his versatility. The Frenchman registered the most assists, alongside others, at the tournament with three in seven games.

Overall, Griezmann was an incredibly efficient player, who consistently took up good positions, which was the most prevalent in France’s Quarter-final win over England.

Midfield: Jude Bellingham (England)

The only England player in the Team of the Tournament, Borussia Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham put on some of his best displays for England.

His performances, especially in the group stage and the Round of 16 game against Senegal, were the highlight of his tournament and showed him as one of the big stars in this stacked England team.

Overall, Bellingham proved himself in his first World Cup, cementing him in this England side for the foreseeable future, with his positional awareness and ability to read his teammate’s runs - most notably seen for Jordan Henderson’s goal against Senegal.

Midfield: Enzo Fernandez (Argentina)

Perhaps the break-out star of the 2022 Qatar World Cup, the Younger Player of the Tournament, Enzo Fernandez was a star in the midfield for Argentina.

Fernandez played all seven games for Argentina, usually lining up alongside Rodrigo de Paul and Alexis Mac Allister, creating a solid midfield. The Benfica midfielder also managed to bag his first goal at the World Cup, his maiden goal coming in the 2 - 0 win over Mexico in the group stage.

Overall, Fernandez’s controlled midfield play was a surprise and an important facet in Argentina’s third World Cup win and Fernandez’s first.

Forward: Lionel Messi (Argentina)

With Argentina’s win in the Final against France meant that Lionel Messi has finally completed football, with the World Cup being the last thing evading his already impressive trophy cabinet.

Messi’s performances were his usual impressive standard to which he was rewarded with the Golden Ball, making him the first player to ever win the Golden Ball twice, with his first coming back in 2014.

The forward also the second-highest scorer at the World Cup with seven goals and three assists in seven games, including two in the Final, showing his incredible pedigree even at the age of 35.

Forward: Julian Alvarez (Argentina)

Julian Alvarez has cemented himself as Argentina’s number nine for the foreseeable future with his performance in Qatar, finding the back of the net enough to unseat Inter Milan’s, Lautaro Martinez.

Manchester City’s Alvarez was the third-highest scorer in Qatar, tied with France’s veteran forward Olivier Giroud on four goals in seven games. An impressive feat for Alvarez was that his four goals came from only nine shots, giving him an 89% shot accuracy.

Overall, Alvarez performed and delivered clutch goals for Argentina throughout the tournament with two goals in the Semi-final against a tough Croatia team.

Forward: Kylian Mbappe (France)

Kylian Mbappe became one of the unluckiest players in World Cup history after scoring a hat-trick in the World Cup Final and still ending up on the losing side.

Mbappe finished his impressive tournament with the Golden Boot after he scored eight goals, and registered two assists, in seven games. The forward became the second youngest World Cup Golden Boot winner (behind Thomas Muller) and the second-ever person to score in back-to-back World Cup Finals.

Overall, Mbappe was the best player for France and one of the best forwards throughout the entire tournament, especially in the Final, where the Frenchman netted a historic hat-trick as well as converting his penalty.