World Cup Group G: Brazil and Neymar embark out on campaign to end World Cup drought

World Cup 2022 team-by-team guide


Manager: Tite

World Cup history: 22nd appearance. Best result – Winners in 1958, 1962, 1970, 1994, 2002

The tournament favourites, as per World Cup tradition. A lack of warm-up games against European teams makes it difficult to rate their true level and a defeat to Argentina in the Copa America final highlighted weaknesses. But Brazil are very strong throughout the team on paper with an embarrassment of riches in attack.

Star man: Neymar. The PSG forward has carried the torch for Brazil for a decade with an impressive 75 goals in 121 games. In Brazil however, a World Cup winner’s medal is everything and this is his best chance since 2014.



Manager: Dragan Stojković

World Cup history: 13th appearance (when including Yugoslavia, third as Serbia). Best result – Fourth place in 1930 and 1962

An upwardly mobile team that is going places, Serbia began the Nations League in 2018 in Group C and have progressed to Group A, and topped Ireland’s qualifying group ahead of Portugal. They have some superb offensive options and will be a threat to any team.

Star man: Aleksander Mitrovic. Some 39 goals in his last 43 Serbia games is as impressive a strike rate as you will see in international football. After 43 goals for Fulham in the Championship last year, he has adapted to the Premier League to score almost as prolifically there this season.


Manager: Murat Yakin

World Cup history: 12th appearance. Best result – Quarter-finals in 1934, 1938 and 1954

For a team so consistent at making major tournaments, it is a surprise that Switzerland have not made the quarter-finals of the World Cup since 1954. Another team in fine fettle, they beat Portugal and Spain in the Nations League heading into the tournament, while their victory over France in the last Euros showed they can take on the best.

Star man: Granit Xhaka. The all-action midfielder has had his fair share of criticism at Arsenal over the years for his combative style, but the Swiss captain has led Arsenal to top of the Premier League ahead of the winter break.


Manager: Rigobert Song

World Cup history: Eighth appearance. Best result – Quarter-finals in 1990.

Ever since Roger Milla’s famous dancing in Italia ‘90, Cameroon haven’t done much in the World Cup, their sole victory being over Saudi Arabia in a group stage in 2002. Despite having a few well-regarded players, it is hard to see where the win comes from this time either in what is a very tough group.

Star man: André Onana. The Inter Milan man is a modern goalkeeper trained at Ajax, strong off his line and with excellent distribution.

David Gorman

David Gorman

David Gorman is a sports journalist with The Irish Times