We’re down to the last two teams in the World Cup, and it promises to be an exciting final matchup. Argentina will face last year’s champion, France, who has lost a few players due to injury. But those players were injured before the tournament started, which shows the depth of this club. Paul Pogba, N-Golo Kante, Karim Benzema, Presnel Kimpembe, Christopher Nkunuku, and Mike Maignan missed the entire tournament. The only player injured during play was Lucas Hernandez, who tore an ACL in the opening match. Olivier Giroud stepped in for Benzema and is in the running for the golden boot award.
Argentina has a fully healthy squad, which is rare for a final game of a grueling World Cup. Lionel Messi has already stated that this will be his last World Cup and his last chance to win. It’s one feat he has not accomplished in his fantastic career.
They had a relatively easy time against the Croatian team. There was some discussion about a bad referee call that resulted in a penalty and an early goal against Croatia. It completely took the wind out of their sales.
Golden Boot Standings
Along with the championship win, several awards are up for grabs during any World Cup tournament.
Golden Ball Best player
Golden Glove Best goalkeeper
FIFA Young Player Best player under 21 at the start of 2022
Golden Boot Top goal scorer
The golden boot is a tight race that might also decide the winning team. The top four players are all from France and Argentina.
Player Country Goals
Lionel Messi Argentina 5
Kylian Mbappe France 5
Olivier Giroud France 4
Julian Alvarez Argentina 4
These two teams are so evenly matched it’s difficult for the sportsbooks to pick a favorite. France has superstar Kylian Mbappe, while Argentina has Lionel Messi. Some bookmakers have France by a small margin. They suspect a defensive battle, with the over/under total being 2.5 goals.
Argentina win +175
France win +170
Both teams to score (Y/N) +100/-140
It wasn’t that long ago that these two teams faced each other. Both Mbappe and Messi were on the teams when France knocked Argentina out of the 2018 World Cup in the Round of 16.
Will that fuel Argentina’s game or be a weight on their confidence?
Playing in the Winter Months Has Had a Good Effect
This is the first time that the World Cup has been played in the winter months. For the regular soccer fan, that may not make a difference in their viewing intensity, but it has made a big difference for the average North American sports fan. These months are a time for football, basketball, and hockey when fans can sit in the comfort of their homes, the bars, or the stadiums to take in the games. Summertime is less consistent, as there are vacations, family outings, and outdoor activities to up our focus and leisure time.
I would have thought that putting the World Cup in the middle of an already crowded sports agenda would have had a negative effect. But we’re seeing record-breaking TV audiences around the world.
- Japan drew an average of 36.37 million viewers during the Group game with Costa Rica, which was 74% higher than the average group stage audience of 2018.
- In Korea Republic, 11.14 million viewers watched their tournament opener against Uruguay. That’s a 97% increase in viewership compared to the average group-stage games in 2018.
- In the Netherlands, 76.6% of people watching TV were tuned into their team playing Ecuador. It was the highest TV audience in 2022, and more people than in any match in 2018.
- Portugal had the largest TV viewership of any FIFA game ever when they played against Uruguay on November 28.
- In the US, viewership continually breaks records. When they played England on November 25th, the TV audience peaked at 19.65 million viewers.
- In South America, the enthusiasm for the World Cup is always tremendous. In Argentina, they had 8.48 million viewers, which equated to an unbelievable 81.3% of the people watching TV.
Maybe they’ve accidentally hit on something with this new date. Unfortunately, it hits in the middle of many soccer teams’ regular scheduling. It would be a challenging endeavor to reschedule standard soccer leagues. But I bet it’s got them thinking.
Either way, it’s helped bookies in North America bring attention to the world of soccer betting. And with the next World Cup 2026 being held jointly in the USA, Canada, and Mexico, soccer’s visibility in North America is sure to continue to increase each year.
You still have time to transfer over to BossAction to get all the action for the final for the winner of the World Cup, 2022, which will be played on Sunday, December 18th at 10:00 am ET. There is also the game to decide third place between Morocco and Croatia will take place on Saturday, December 18, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. ET.
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