The FIFA World Cup, commonly known as the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by senior men’s national teams of the members of the Federation Internationale de Football Association, the sport’s global governing body.
The 22nd FIFA World Cup is currently being held in Qatar and from great upsets to jaw-dropping goals, we’ve witnessed them all. And, as we’ve reached the semi-finals, why don’t we take a look back at some memorable moments?
England Start Off With Their Biggest Win
Do you know how many predicted that England would slip up and lose 1–0, either with an Iranian goal coming from a quick break after a period of ineffective English possession or an Iranian score from a poorly defended corner?
I think everyone was questioning England going into the World Cup due to their recent poor performance, but it looks like they broke out finally when they defeated Iran by 6-2, with Bukayo Saka scoring twice.
Saudi Arabia Beating Argentina
I still can’t believe Saudi Arabia broke Argentina’s unbeatable streak!
I remember going to sleep thinking Argentina would crush Saudi Arabia, but when I woke up and saw the results, I was beyond shocked.
If you watched the match, it wasn’t surprising that Argentina lost the game. Initially, it might have looked as though Argentina would win; they dominated the game and they scored pretty early, thanks to Lionel Messi. But, as the game progressed, things began to change and Saudi Arabia began to press far higher up the pitch. In addition, the high line allowed little space in the midfield which allowed them to win possession more easily.
I’m not going to lie, Saudi’s backline was strong and organized, which frequently caught Argentina’s forwards offside. And, that kick from Salem which earned Saudi Arabia’s second goal was insane and badass.
Japan Defeated Four-Time Champion Germany
I think this was one of the most unpredictable matches in FIFA history.
As a football fan and as an Asian, I think it was great to watch an Asian team upsetting a traditional football power from Europe. Germany thought that it would be an easy win and underestimated the blue Samurais. Big Mistake!
Contrary to popular belief, Japan is very tenacious and its defense is great. They don’t seem to play dirty like other teams and they don’t dive either. That second goal after the pinpoint pass was one of the best ever scored in World Cup history. And, I think Japan changing its strategy is definitely one of the reasons why it won.
To sum it up, this match will definitely go down in football history books for sure.
South Korea Scores Two Goals in Three Minutes
It didn’t matter that South Korea lost to Ghana as all that mattered was that we got a new Oppa: Cho Gue Sung.
Ever since he scored two goals in three minutes, South Korea’s Player 9 has been stealing hearts. That second goal was simply brilliant; he flew right over the opponent’s defender to score with his head and honestly, I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve rewatched those three minutes.
Bonus: Cho Gue Sung’s popularity has skyrocketed since the match with Ghana and his Instagram followers increased from 20, 000 to 2.6 million followers in just one week. In addition, it was reported that the football Oppa had to turn off his phone as he had been receiving too many marriage proposals.
Cristiano Ronaldo Breaks Another Record
There’s no denying that Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the fastest and best football players in this world. And, once again, he didn’t disappoint his fans.
In Portugal’s 3-2 win against Ghana, star striker Cristiano became the first player to score in five World Cups (in 2009, 2010, 2014, 2018 and 2022 editions).
And, if you rewatch the match, you’d notice that he was smiling even before the third goal. What confidence!
I know there have been many more intense and high-goal-scoring matches and I’ll cover them all in the next article. So, until then, stay tuned!