Worst opening match in World Cup history?

Worst opening match in World Cup history?

On the evening of November 20, the 2022 World Cup officially started in Qatar! In the opening match, the host team played against Ecuador. The meeting ended with a score of 2-0 in favor of the South Americans, and their best player Enner Valencia scored a double.

When the World Cup calendar was drawn up, the first pair of teams should have been the Netherlands and Senegal. However, sometime later, the organizers decided to move forward the game with the participation of the Qatar national team a day earlier. The opponents of the Marrons were Ecuador, which weren’t anything special - it immediately became clear that this sign was far from the most attractive.

Qatar was hard at work preparing for the World Cup, holding dozens of friendly sparring sessions and introducing the “Spanish” game model under the guidance of head coach Felix Sanchez. However, at the decisive moment, the system failed. In the 4th minute already, the Marrons conceded a goal into their own net, but they were saved by VAR, which recorded an offside position in the player of Ecuador, Enner Valencia. Ten minutes later, the Tricolors’ striker converted a penalty, punishing the Qataris for another mistake in defense. And at the end of half an hour, an accurate header by Valencia set the final score 2-0.

As for us, we saw the match of the worst teams of group A. No matter how hard Qatar tried, they still do not match the level of the World Cup, even if they were held with 48 participants. For the whole game, the Maroons had only two half-moments at the goal of Ecuador, and the Tricolor goalkeeper did not really come into play. Against the backdrop of the hosts of the tournament, the Ecuadorians looked quite solid, but their football was far from perfect. The South American team, due to speed and straightforwardness, broke into the defense of Qatar. Only now it was still pulled out by one Enner Valencia, who left the field ahead of schedule due to damage.

Thus, Qatar became the first World Cup host team to lose the opening match. We would not be surprised if the Asians do not leave the group at all and thereby disappoint the local elite. For the first time in 56 years, in the opening game of the World Cup there were so few shots on target - only 11. Yes, the opponents tried, but they clearly lacked skill. In addition, the cancellation of the first goal of Ecuador raises a lot of questions, since offside in that episode was rather doubtful. Did the World Cup start with a refereeing scandal?

Fortunately, the opening match of the World Cup of frankly dubious quality is now history. On the second day of the tournament, more solid teams of the caliber of England and the Netherlands will enter the game, and a day later we will see confrontations involving France and Argentina. They should show football of the level that many expect from the World Cup here.