Socceroos First World Cup Qualifying Stage Appears Ripe for Picking

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Socceroos coach Graham Arnold reports that he is pleased with the draw his squad has received, as the qualification for FIFA World Cup 2022 gets underway.

The Australian squad will play in the Asian confederation, with games agasint Jordan, Taiwan, Kuwait and Nepal in Group B.

He should be happy. Those three countries may not be countries by the time 2022 comes around.

We find ourselves wondering whether Taiwan can advance and be recognised as a country, maybe even play in the Olympic Games, from which they are now prohibited by the IOC and/or others from a fear of upsetting China.

The 2022 FIFA World Cup will be held in Qatar, which given the fossil fuel wealth of that nation, will definitely be a country in 2022.

The eight groups in the confederation will star play beginning in September and concluding in June of the following year.

Australian barely made it to the 2018 FIFA World Cup and failed to make it beyond the Group stage.

The winners from each of the eight groups and the four best runners up, 12 sides in all, move on to another group stage. Those 12 teams are eligible to participate in the 2023 Asian Cup.

It all gives us something to anticipate over the next four years.

Socceroos’ coach Arnold told reporters, in remarks compiled by the AAP, “We are happy with our draw. My first game in charge was in Kuwait City, and we won 4-0, so we have been there and experienced Kuwait as a group.”

The Socceroos have previously played not just Kuwait, but also Jordan, but Nepal and Taiwan are unknown entities.

International football competitions seem to enjoying a halcyon era, as participation and spectation have both shown growth, even if the quaint notion of country against country is gradually vanishing as the world without borders makes it harder and harder to determine the exact national origins of players.