All eyes are on Qatar right now, as one of the most talked about World Cups unfolds over the next month. Besides all of the well-known talking points and exciting football action, there’s another reason for Barcelona fans to pay attention to the FIFA World Cup 2022. A host of current and past Barcelona players and managers are participating in the tournament, with as many as 31 individuals having ties to the club. We break down Barcelona’s influence on this World Cup, on a group-by-group basis.
Looking at Group A, there are as many as seven individuals connected to Barcelona here in some way, shape, or form.
The Netherlands has two current Barcelona players in Memphis Depay and Frenkie de Jong, while they are also coached by ex-Barcelona manager Louis van Gaal. Add in ex-players Xavi Simons and Luuk de Jong, and there’s a heavy Barcelona feel in this Dutch side.
Other teams in Group A also feature a Barcelona influence, with Moussa N’Diaye playing for Senegal and Félix Sánchez Bas coaching Qatar.
Surprisingly, there is little Barcelona influence in Group B, with the United States the only side that features a connection to the Spanish club.
Sergiño Dest will be running out for the United States, an ex-Barcelona player who is now with AC Milan. The defender will be hoping for a strong showing when the United States take on Iran in their third match on Tuesday 29th of November. Dest’s side will be heavy underdogs, but it is a result they’ve achieved before and will be looking to do so again. To make a punt on an upset to happen in this game, find your betting portal here for all the best betting odds.
In Group C, three Barcelona connections exist.
Firstly, the big name of Lionel Messi, who needs no introduction. Another star from Barcelona is Robert Lewandowski, who will run out for Poland and try to patch up last world cup disappointment.
Slightly lesser known is the Mexican manager Tata Martino, who managed Barcelona eight years ago without any major successes. He will try and do better at this year’s world cup.
Two current Barcelona players will take the field for France this World Cup, with Jules Kounde and Ousmane Dembéle in the side. They will be joined by former teammate Antoine Griezmann, who will try and recapture the World Cup trophy.
Denmark also sees two Spanish connections, with Martin Braithwaite and Andrea Christensen putting on the Danish strip.
Unsurprisingly, the Spanish squad boasts seven Barcelona players, with the bulk of their squad made up from the club. Big names include Eric Garcia and Ansu Fati.
Outside of these connections, Group E also has Barcelona influences in the German and Japanese squads, with Marc Andre ter Stegen and Takefusa Kubo playing for the two respectively.
Group F and G
Group F only has weak connections to Barcelona, with Abde Ezzalzouli running out for Morocco, who is currently on loan from Barcelona.
In Group G, however, Neymar Jr. and Dani Alves represent Barcelona in the Brazilian squad. Cameroon also has goalie Andre Onana and Martin Hongla who played in Barcelona on loan from Granada four years ago.
The final group in this FIFA World Cup has three Barcelona connections.
Ronald Araujo and Luis Suarez run out for Uruguay, while Paik Seung-ho from the South Korean team once represented Barcelona at a lower level in the club.
With so many Barcelona influences across the World Cup, this event is undoubtedly one to watch for dedicated fans of the club.