2022 World Cup Preview: Qatar vs Ecuador

The 2022 World Cup will start on Sunday, November 20 with host nation Qatar taking on Ecuador at the Al-Bayt Stadium.

Qatar qualified automatically and have the entire nation behind them to exceed expectations in their first World Cup. Ecuador, on the other hand, struggled in the qualifiers. They will look to put that behind them and enjoy themselves in the Middle East.

Ecuador are making their fourth appearance at the World Cup after missing out on the previous edition in Russia in 2018. The South Americans escaped the fear of Peru after finishing in the top four of the final standings of the CONMEBOL World Cup qualification.

FORM GUIDE (LAST FIVE MATCHES)

In their previous five games, Qatar have a 100% win record and will be feeling confident going into Sunday’s match. Ecuador have not fared well since securing qualification, with four draws and a win in their last five games.

QATAR’S FORM

9 November 2022 Qatar 1–0 Albania Friendly
5 November 2022 Qatar 2–1 Panama Friendly
27 October 2022 Qatar 1–0 Honduras Friendly
23 October 2022 Qatar 2–0 Guatemala Friendly
13 October 2022 Nicaragua 1–2 Qatar Friendly

ECUADOR’S FORM

12 November 22 Ecuador 0–0 Iraq Friendly
27 September 22 Japan 0–0 Ecuador Friendly
23 September 22 Saudi Arabia 0–0 Ecuador Friendly
11 June 22 Ecuador 1–0 Cape Verde Friendly
5 June 22 Mexico 0–0 Ecuador Friendly

HEAD TO HEAD

The two sides have met thrice with the latest encounter coming off four years ago. They, however, have never met in a World Cup or any other competitive match. It is fair to say both none of them has a particularly stronger edge over the other.

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18 Feb 1996 Qatar v Ecuador 1-1 International Friendly
25 Feb 1996 Qatar v Ecuador 1-2 International Friendly
12 Oct 2018 Qatar v Ecuador 4-3 International Friendly

TEAM NEWS AND PREDICTED LINE-UP

QATAR

Qatar coach Felix Sanchez has used the 5-3-2 formation in difficult games. It has earned some positive results, including the 2-2 against Chile in September, and he is likely to set up similarly against Ecuador.

PREDICTED XI

(3-5-2) Al Sheeb; Al-Rawi, Hassan, Miguel, Salman, Ahmed, Al-Haydos, Hatem, Boudiaf, Ali, Afif

ECUADOR

Ecuador prefer to sit deep, absorb pressure, and respond with counterattacks, with Enner Valencia leading the line and Brighton stars Moisés Caicedo, Gruezo, and Mendez involved.

This tactically adaptable team will most likely use a range of formations, such as a 4-3-3 system with their fullbacks and dynamic midfielders playing key roles.

PREDICTED XI

(4-3-3) Dominguez, Castillo, Hincapie, Estupinan, Torres, Caicedo, Gruezo, Mendez, Estrada, Ibarra, Valencia