8 bold predictions for the 2022 FIFA World Cup group stage

Tajon Buchanan celebrates after scoring Canada's second goal vs. Jamaica. (Alex D'Addese/Sportsnet)

Will Canada advance to the Round of 16? Could Mexico be eliminated in the group stage for the first time since 1978?

With the 2022 FIFA World Cup set to kick off in Qatar, we asked our soccer writers — John Molinaro, Devang Desai, Peter Galindo and Tristan D’Amours — to deliver their boldest of bold predictions for the group stage.

Group A

Memphis Depay will go without scoring a single goal in the opening round, but the Netherlands will still manage to finish first in Group A. — John Molinaro

Group B

Tyler Adams and Christian Pulisic lead the United States to the top spot in Group B while England survives a push from Wales to qualify for the Round of 16. — Devang Desai

Group C

Mexico will be eliminated at the group stage for the first time since 1978, with Argentina and Poland advancing to the Round of 16. — Peter Galindo

Group D

Denmark will warm the hearts of everyone in world football by winning Group D. France will hiccup but still make it through. The pressure is on, bonne chance. — Tristan D’Amours

Group E

Germany and Spain get through to the Round of 16, but Japan makes it especially nervy for La Roja on the final matchday of the group. — Devang Desai

Group F

Canada will beat out Croatia for second place in Group B to claim a spot in the Round of 16. — John Molinaro

Group G

Switzerland will progress as the winner of Group G over Brazil, who will claim second place ahead of Serbia. — Peter Galindo

Group H

In a Last Dance moment for their top stars, Uruguay will win the group. Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal will take second place despite the drama. — Tristan D’Amours

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