World Cup 2022: Japan, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Other Countries That Pulled Off Biggest Upsets In Qatar

The 2022 FIFA World Cup has no doubt produced biggest upsets in the history of football during the opening and other stages of the competition currently being played in Qatar. It all started during the Group C opening game between Saudi Arabia and Argentina.

  1. Saudi Arabia vs Argentina

Saudi Arabia, ranked 53rd in the world, coming from behind to stun Argentina 2-1. Lionel Messi had given the Albiceleste the lead from the penalty spot but Saleh Al-Shehri and Salem Al-Dawsari had other ideas as they made themselves national heroes.

Argentina took the lead after an early penalty conversion by Messi, and looked comfortable to add to that with three goals disallowed for offside among other chances created. They lost all control in the second half, though, and Saudi Arabia struck as fast as lightning to equalize and take the lead. Saleh Alshehri and Salem Aldawsari’s goals stunned the Argentines, and forced Scaloni to make changes.

It was only a one-hit wonder performance from the Saudi team, but one for the record books.

2. Japan vs Germany

Then there was Japan. They shocked the four-time World Cup champion after they again behind to a penalty against four-time winners Germany but going on to win by the same scoreline as the Saudis did. Ritsu Doan and Takuma Asano, who ply their trade in the Bundesliga, scored the goals with a delicious narrative flourish.

3. Belgium 0-2 Morocco

A vibrant performance from Morocco exposed the aging backline of Roberto Martinez’s side as the Belgian team ranked second in the world fell to 22nd in FIFA ranking Morocco. They went ahead to top Group F ahead of Croatia while Belgium’s tournament ended after they finished third in the group.

4. France 0-1 Tunisia

Even though Didier Deschamps made nine changes to the team that faced Tunisia, it did reveal some gaps in the Armour of the defending World champions, France. Their loss was still unexpected.

5. Brazil 0-1 Cameroon

Brazil’s Coach also made nine changes to the starting lineup that faced Cameroon but they were not immune to a surprise result. The win though was not enough to get Cameroon into the round of 16 of the tournament.

In the end, nations from six continents made the knockout stages for the first time. As the knock out stage resumes on Saturday, will wait to see if there would be more upsets.

Portugal 6-1 Switzerland: Outstanding Goncalo Ramos bags the first 2022 World Cup hattrick as Ronaldo’s men send Swiss home

Portugal have sent Switzerland packing from the 2022 Fifa World Cup with a n emphatic 6-1 victory. Portugal legend Cristiano Ronaldo made headlines before the game because he was benched but that did not change anything as his team went on to deliver a stellar performance.

It was a good night for Goncalo Ramos as he bagged the first hattrick at the 2022 Fifa World Cup in his first Start for Portugal. Ramos was a direct replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo.

🔴 Live Blog

Goal! Portugal 6-1 Switzerland

That is outrageous! Charges away down the left, chops inside onto his right foot and curls a sublime finish into the far corner. Sommer didn’t bother moving.

Goal! Portugal 5-1 Switzerland

The first hat-trick of the World Cup, what a story. Ramos in on goal, dinks it over Sommer and it trickles over the line. Brilliant finish, brilliant performance.

Goal! Portugal 4-1 Switzerland

Switzerland corner, Ramos flicks it on in his own box and Akanji is there at the back post to turn it home. Three more needed.

Goal! Portugal 4-0 Switzerland

That is a wonderful move from Portugal, who are playing some incredible football. Fernandes slides it through to Guerreiro, and the left-back lifts it into the roof of the net.

Goal! Portugal 3-0 Switzerland

Ramos’ dream night continues, he has a second. Low cross into the near post, he gets across his man and pokes it through Sommer.

Second Half

We’re up and running for the second-half!


That’s half-time, a pretty perfect 45 minutes for Portugal. Ramos and Pepe with the goals, Santos’ team selection has paid off. Could well have been a wider lead too. Switzerland with a second-half mountain to climb.

Goal! Portugal 2-0 Switzerland

That’s terrible from Switzerland. Corner whipped in, Pepe free six yards out and he powers the header home.

Goal! Portugal 1-0 Switzerland

His first international start and it’s a stunning finish from Goncalo Ramos! Tight angle, but somehow he’s absolutely blasted a left-footed strike into the top corner. Sommer didn’t move as it flew in at his near post.

Kick Off!

Portugal v Switzerland for a place in the FIFA World Cup quarter-finals. There’s been plenty of pre-match close-ups on substitute Cristiano Ronaldo, who is cheered when his face is shown on the big screen during the national anthem

Starting XI

Ronaldo is dropped to the bench, with Ramos coming in to the lead the line instead. The 37-year-old will not be impressed, that much we do know.

Cancelo also misses out in a surprise move, with Guerreiro coming in at left-back and Dalot on the right. For Switzerland, Sommer is fit to start but it’s Schar and Akanji at centre-back, with Elvedi not in the side.

Morocco 0-0 (3-0) Spain: Bono the Hero from Twelve Yards as the Atlas Lions Send Spaniards Packing

The Atlas Lions of Morocco are through to the quarter-finals of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar, following a shock penalty shootout win over La Furia Roja of Spain in their Round-Of-16 clash played at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan on Tuesday.

There was nothing to separate both sides after 120 minutes of action, but when it came to spot-kicks, Morocco goalkeeper Yacine Bono saved multiple penalties while Spain failed to convert any of theirs as they suffer consecutive Round-Of-16 exits at the FIFA World Cup.

🔴 Live Blog:


After 120 minutes of action here at the Education City Stadium in Al Rayyan, it has finished goalless between Morocco and Spain. On to penalties we go to decide who proceeds into the quarter-finals.









Coach Luis Enrique has named Real Madrid star Marcos Asensio in a false-nine role, while Dani Olmo and Ferran Torres will be his support upfront. Midfield youngsters Pedri and Gavi are in the XI, as well as Jordi Alba and Sergio Busquets.

The impressive Hakim Ziyech is in the starting line-up alongside Achraf Hakimi, Sofyan Amrabat, Youssef En-Nesyri and Sofiane Boufal.

Brazil 4-1 South Korea: Samba Boys Advance After Beating South Korea. Neymar, Richarlison On Target

Goals from Vinicius Junior, Neymar Junior, Richarlison Andrade and Lucas Paqueta have fired Brazil to the quarter finals of the 2022 FIFA World Cup, after they defeated South Korea 4-1.

Vinicius Jr opened the scoring in the eighth minute of the game when he fired home from inside the penalty area. Neymar then added the second from the penalty spot, before Richarlison scored one of the goals of the tournament to make it three.

Paqueta got in on the act before the half-time break, volleying in Vinicius Jr’s lobbed assist. Paik Seung-ho pulled one back for South Korea.

South Korea improved after the break and got their consolation, but the game was long since up.

South Korea have got a few men sitting deep for the counter, but it is clear they are looking to move the ball upwards through the flanks.

They tried numerous times to break down the Brazilian backline, but have struggled to create chances in this half. They made an absolute mess of playing out from the back, very bold to still be doing that.



It’s all over at Stadium 974 as Brazil come away with a ruthless 4-1 victory over South Korea to setup a quarter-final matchup with Croatia.


GOAL! Korea on the board!

76′ Brazil 4-1 South Korea

It’s a screamer!

Dani Alves still at it

Dani Alves is on! Not sure where the introduction of a 39-year-old sits on Roy Keane’s scale of opposition disrespect, but good to have a wise old head on to see this one safely over the line.

Chance for Raphinha, Brazil sub

63′ Brazil 4-0 South Korea

A beautiful team move started by Casemiro sees Neymar play Raphinha into the box. Raphinha shoots from close range but Kim Seung-gyu makes another good save.

Tite makes his first change of the night:

Dani Alves comes on, replacing Eder Militao, who was a booking away from a suspension.

50 mins: Casemiro with a lovely ball out wide, Raphinha running onto it.

Looks to play the ball into the box, blocked and bounces back off him, rolling behind for a goal-kick.


45+1 mins: Five minutes added on.

Another stunning Brazil move, Raphinha flicks it through to Paqueta who tries to be far too clever with the finish and just scoops it out to the goalkeeper.

Had to blast that with his right foot, would probably have been 5

GOAL! Brazil 4-0 South Korea | Lucas Paqueta 36′


This is a ridiculous performance. Comes down the left this time, Vinicius flicking the ball into the box.

Paqueta runs onto it and volleys into the bottom corner. Too easy.

GOAL! Brazil 3-0 South Korea | Richarlison 29′


That is genuinely outrageous. Casemiro lifts the ball into the box, Richarlison juggles it on his head a few times just for fun.

They then bring it down, lovely one-touch passing cuts South Korea open and Richarlison finishes it off.

GOAL! Brazil 2-0 South Korea | Neymar 13′


Neymar takes an age to start his run up, and with the most nonchalant finish ever he rolls it into the bottom corner. Outrageously cool.


This is falling apart for South Korea at a rapid rate.

Jung kicks through Richarlison, as he looked to clear the ball up the pitch. Brazil forward got there first and poked it away.

Not a huge amount of contact really, but just about enough.

GOAL! Brazil 1-0 South Korea | Vinicius Jr 7′

That’s the perfect start. Raphinha in down the right, cut back goes through everyone and finds Vinicius. Takes a touch and then curls it into the far corner. Wonderful finish.

As always, South Korea’s collective fortunes rest squarely on the shoulders of their talisman Son Heung-min.

The Tottenham forward put in a sterling performance in their previous match against Portugal, providing the vital assist to Hwang Hee-Chan’s winner in stoppage time.

The Taegeuk Warriors will need another influential performance from him if they are to knock out the Brazilians.

The South Koreans will aim to pull off yet another World Cup 2022 shock when they take on five-time champions Brazil in Monday’s last-16 showdown at Stadium 974.

The Selecao finished top of Group G on goal difference, while Paulo Bento’s men stunned Portugal on the final day in Group H to qualify for the knockouts in second place.

Brazil attempting to reach their 8th consecutive World Cup Quarter Final and their 17th Quarter Final in the World Cup Finals.

South Korea attempting to reach only their 2nd quarter final, their first outside of their own hosted World Cup Finals.

The winner will play Croatia in the quarter-finals, after they edged Japan on penalties earlier today.

Japan 1-1 (1-3) Croatia: Modric, Perisic advance on Penalties

Croatia have qualified for the quarter final of the FIFA World Cup after beating Japan 3-1 on penalties.

The game ended 1-1 on regulation time and extended into extra time. After the 30 minutes, the score remained unchanged, forcing the tie into penalty shootout inside the Al Janoub Stadium.

Japan took the lead in the 43rd minute when Daizen Maeda hit the back of the net.

But Croatia bounced back to draw level through Perisic beautiful header.

The game entered penalties after the score remained the same after extra time.

Croatia advanced after Japan lost their first two penalties.



End of 30 minutes extra time, and it ended 1-1 . Penalties will decide the winner.

This game will go down to penalties.

114 minutes played and nothing has changed about the score.

15 minutes played, the second 15 minutes will start right away.

100 minutes played, still a 1-1 draw.

Extra time kicks off


It ended 1-1 between the two sides after regulation time.

This will be the first game that will extend into extra time in the knockout stage

90′ Japan 1-1 Croatia

This game may likely enter extra time.

82′ Japan 1-1 Croatia

Japan really pressing to score and avoid going into extra time.

70′ Japan 1-1 Croatia

The scorer

Beautiful header from Ivan Perisic put Croatia back in the game.


Croatia equalise. The score is now even.

The exciting moment of celebration

50′ Japan 1-0 Croatia

Japan piling pressure on Croatia

Second half

We are back for the second 45 minutes of the game.


Japan 1-0 Croatia

Daizen Maeda breaks the deadlock as the game reaches the end of the first half.


Japan takes the lead after 43 minutes of action

Some moments are irresistible. All for the beautiful game of football.

The game is going down hard.

25′ Japan 0-0 Croatia

15′ Japan 0-0 Croatia

Match ball

Japan vs Croatia is going down.


We are underway

Japan lineup is all set to tackle their Round of 16 opponent.

Croatia starting lineup has Luka Modric as captain.

EXCLUSIVE: Cristiano Ronaldo Set to join Saudi Outfit Al Nassr in Mega Record Move (Reports)

Portuguese superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is set to lace his boots for Saudi Arabian outfit Al-Nassr, according to reports from Marca, with the Spanish outlet claiming he will sign a deal on January 1, 2023.

The 37 year-old looks to have finally found himself a new club following his dramatic exit from Manchester United just two days before the start of the World Cup, when he made a number of controversial statements in a TV interview with journalist Piers Morgan.

The deal is worth nearly £200m and is set to be one of the most lucrative in history and would make him the best-paid sportsman in history. Marca claims that the initial deal will be worth close to €100m (£86m), but will be incentivised by further agreements such as advertisement and sponsorship deals.

Al-Nassr are one of the most successful clubs in Saudi, having won the Saudi league nine times, with their most recent triumph coming in 2019. They play at Mrsool Park, which has a capacity of 25,000. Their chairman, Musalli Almuammar, was previously the president of the entire division, the Saudi Pro League, between March 2018 and March 2020.

The Saudi giants also currently have in their ranks the likes of former Arsenal goalkeeper David Ospina, Brazilian midfielder Luiz Gustavo and Cameroon striker Vincent Aboubakar – who scored a contender for goal of the tournament at the World Cup last week.

England 3-0 Senegal: Kane, Saka shine as Three Lions thrash Champions of Africa >>>

The Three Lions of England thrashed the Teranga Lions of Senegal 3-0 in order to set up a game against France in the Quarterfinals of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar.

Jude Bellingham cut a beautiful ball back for Henderson to open the scoring in the 36th minute. Harry Kane finally scored his first goal in Qatar via a wonderful counter attack that started with Jude Bellingham.

Bukayo Saka made it three to secure the quarterfinal tickets and ensure that Senegal return home.

🔴Live Blog

Goal! England 3-0 Senegal

Saka gets in on the fun for England. They’ve been clinical to say the least… England vs France will be a rollercoaster of a match in the quarterfinal.

Second Half

Things looking much better now for England than they were for the majority of the opening period. Will they continue like in the second half?

Goal! England 2-0 Senegal

Harry Kane scores his first World Cup goal. But it was all Bellingham. What a player.

Goal! England 1-0 Senegal

A breakaway goal – can’t really say they deserved it but pretty clinical. Jordan Henderson slots in from a Jude Bellingham cut back.

Kick Off!

We’re underway. France waiting in the quarter-finals for whoever comes out on top tonight.

Starting XI –

So Rashford, England’s top scorer in Qatar, does indeed miss out despite that brace against Wales in the last match. Saka and Foden start either side of Kane, while Henderson gets the nod in midfield over Mount and Walker starts at right-back.

Mendy comes into midfield for Senegal, pressure on him to deliver with Gueye missing out through suspension.

France 3-1 Poland: Giroud Scores, Becomes France’s all-time goalscorer; France Through To Q/Final As Poland Crashes Out, Mbappe Bags Brace, Lewandoski On Target

It is the end of the road for Poland in the ongoing 2022 FIFA World Cup, after goals from Oliver Giroud and Kylie Mbappe truncated their move to the quarter final.

Mbappe’s goal started with Griezmann hacking the ball clear near his own six-yard box to set the front-three away. Proof of his new No8 role and how he’s happy to do the dirty work. He adds the cherry on top of this French victory with another in the 91 minutes.

France will either play England or Senegal.

They had a couple of scary moments in the first half, but after the break Mbappe came to life and he’s fired them into the quarter-finals. Giroud’s record-breaking goal set the French on course for victory earlier on. Lewandowski scored a late consolation from the penalty spot.

As at 85 minutes, life appears to have been drained from Poland, now, and from this game as a contest, in truth.

Poland got their goal but were well out-classed in that second half. The French players go over to their fans at the end and look delighted to progress.

Lewandowski had initially missed a penalty… but the referee pulls it back for encroachment. Or maybe Lloris was off his line? Either way, he however got a second chance at scoring his second World Cup goal.




Dembele’s Move

Dembele opts to pull it right back to Mbappe on the edge of the box. Surely a ball across the goal-face would have done the trick, there? Mbappe miscontrols. Yes, you read that right.

More actions

Poland’s Bereszynki takes the game to the French [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]
France supporters fill the stands at Al Thumama Stadium [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]
France’s Griezmann runs into a Polish challenge [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]

Poland have a taste of the ball


Upemecano’s Moves

Upemecano has been really impressive all tournament at the back for France. He makes a superbly timed challenge.

Bereszynski gets booked

The Pole picks up a yellow for a sliding challenge on Dembele. He argues he got the ball but the referee isn’t listening.

Griezmann tests Szczesny from the resulting free-kick but the keeper punches it clear.

Time for some more pictures…

No football for a few minutes or so, so enjoy these highlights of the first half while we’re making a cup of tea.

France vs Poland, FIFA World Cup 2022, December 5, Al Thumama Stadium [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]
France vs Poland, FIFA World Cup 2022, December 5, Al Thumama Stadium [Showkat Shafi/Al Jazeera]

It’s 1-0 at the break.

Just that one moment of excellence separates the sides – a through-ball from Mbappe and a fine swivel and finish from the record-breaker, Giroud.

Poland had their chances and will feel slightly unfortunate. The French quality has just about shone through.

GOAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL: Giroud puts France ahead in 44th mins

What timing from the French to find their goal just before the break – and it’s an historic one for the ex Arsenal and Chelsea man, who turned and found the bottom corner, to become his nation’s record goalscorer.

Poland holding onto it

Czeslaw Michniewicz’ team have grown into this game and had their first period of sustained possession. Frankowski has a shot blocked inside the box but positive signs for the team in white.

25 mins: France 0-0 Poland 

France dominating possession

Les Blues have had around 70% in this opening 15 minutes and have been putting some pressure on that Polish defence. Dembele gets another shot away at Szczesny’s goal, but it’s too close to him and the keeper dives on it.

Tchouameni shoots from distance

Poland allow him time on the ball 25 yards out and the midfielder launches a shot on Szczesny’s goal. The keeper can only parry as there’s some serious venom on it.

Dembele blocked shot

Mbappe once again causes chaos down that Polish right flank. He flashes a shot across goal which Dembele eventually gets a hold of, but his shot at Szczesny’s goal is blocked.

12 mins: France 0-0 Poland

France get us underway wearing their usual blue and white kit, playing left to right on your screens. Poland have donned a white shirt with red shorts.

Here we go.

France can this afternoon become the third team to book their place in the quarter-finals of the World Cup when they meet Poland in Al Thumama Stadium.

The 2018 winners are the first reigning champions to reach the knockout stage at a World Cup since Brazil in 2006.

This afternoon’s kick-off pits Kylian Mbappe’s defending champions against Robert Lewandoski’s Poles, who qualified for the last-16 despite largely failing to impress in Qatar so far.

They sealed qualification with a game to spare before a surprise 1-0 loss to Tunisia in their final group game.

Poland finished ahead of Mexico on goal difference as they progressed from Group C as runners-up to Argentina, to whom they lost 2-0 in their final group fixture.

Argentina 2-1 Australia: Messi and Alvarez fire Albicelestes into quarterfinal as Socceroos crash out

Argentina has qualified for the quarterfinal of the 2022 FIFA World Cup after a 2-1 victory over Australia on Saturday.

The Round of 16 match played inside the Ahmed bin Ali Stadium saw Lionel Messi’s left foot strike from inside the box give Argentina in the 35th minute.

After the half-time break, Julian Alvarez extended Argentina lead when he scored in the 57th minute. Australia got an own goal but that was not enough to motivate them for a comeback.



It ended Argentina 2-1 Australia

It is an own goal by Fernandez

Craig Godwin with the goal


Goodwin pulled one back for Australia in the 77th minute.

70′ Argentina 2-0 Australia

58′ | A double substitution.


Goodwin, Hrustic


McGree, Baccus


Julian Alvarez makes it TWO to extend Argentina lead.

Messi’s 35th minute goal is the difference so far.


We are back again for the second 45 minutes.

Lionel Messi today reached the 1,000th caps in his professional career


Argentina takes a 1-0 lead into the break.

41′ Argentina 1-0 Australia


Messi strikes to break the deadlock after 34 minutes.

So much to play for.

20′ Argentina 0-0 Australia

The atmosphere is all light up

The fans

The Australian side

There was actually a hand ball there, but the ref looked away.

3′ Argentina calling for an early penalty as they claim a hand ball inside the box.


We are underway.

Argentina deadly as ever.

Australia lineup set for battle against Argentina tonight.

The stadium is all set for this epic encounter.

Netherlands 3-1 USA: Goals from Depay, Blind and Dumfries send the Oranje Boys into the Quarter-finals

The 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar already has its first quarter-final entrant, following the Netherlands 3-1 victory over the Stars and Stripes of the USA in their Round-Of-16 clash on Saturday.

Coach Louis van Gaal’s side took a commanding two-goal lead into the break, courtesy of strikes from Memphis Depay and Daley Blind.

Haji Wright pulled one back for the USA in the 76th minute after some fine work by Christian Pulisic but Denzel Dumfries struck five minutes later to put the tie beyond the reach of the Americans.

🔴 Live Blog:


81′ MIN: The impressive Denzel Dumfries finally caps off his performance with a sumptuous goal.

GOOOAAALLL!!! Netherlands 3-1 USA (D. Dumfries)

76′ MIN: Superb work from Christian Pulisic, who plays a vital role in the build-up. He squares it to Haji Wright, who beats Andries Noppert with a brilliant shot into the left side of the net.

GOOOAAALLL!!! Netherlands 2-1 USA (H. Wright)



45′ MIN: Daley Blind slots home to increase the advantage of the Oranje.

GOOOAAALLL!!! Netherlands 2-0 USA (D. Blind)

10′ MIN: Memphis Depay fires Oranje into the lead. He is the Netherlands second all-time record scorer with 43 goals behind the legendary Robin van Persie (50 goals).

GOOOAAALLL!!! Netherlands 1-0 USA (M. Depay)


The USA have in their Starting XI Weston McKennie, Christian Pulisic and the fleet-footed Timothy Weah. Tyler Adams will captain the side while Sergino Dest is in defence.

The duo of Memphis Depay and Cody Gakpo will lead the attack for the Dutch, while Davy Klaasen, Nathan Ake and Frenkie de Jong are in the line-up.