World Cup 2022 Power Rankings: Portugal surge ahead of Qatar quarter-finals

World Cup power rankings HIC 16:9
After the last-16 ties, many of the pre-tournament favourites have made it through, but how do the teams that are left stack up against each other?

Given its timing and its setting, the 2022 World Cup promised to be an edition like no other, and the tournament has so far provided plenty of drama and surprises.

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Spain were the latest big name to slide out of the competition, with the Morocco triumphing over La Roja to become just the fourth African team to reach the quarter-finals of the competition.

Some of the other pre-tournament favourites are, however, in impressive form, setting us up for a thrilling finale in Qatar.

But who are now the favourites to lift the trophy? Having ranked all the contenders throughout the build-up and during the tournament, here's how GOAL sees it now...

(Last updated: December 3 Teams eliminated: United States, Australia, Poland, Senegal, Japan, South Korea, Spain & Switzerland.)

  1. Croatia

    #8 Croatia

    Last time: 8th

    Croatia are doing it again, with 'it' being drawing their way through a World Cup.

    After two penalty shootout wins on their way to the final in 2018, Zlatko Dalic's side again won out on spot-kicks after being held to a 1-1 draw by Japan.

    However, they lack a cutting edge up front while their veteran stars are beginning to tire, so it is difficult to see them making it past Brazil and into the semi-finals this time around.

  2. Morocco

    #7 Morocco

    Last time: 9th

    Morocco backed up a historic group-stage performance for an African side by becoming just the fourth team from the continent to reach a World Cup quarter-final.

    They are deserving of it too, with their resolute performance against Spain earning them even more plaudits following their impressive attacking showings earlier in the tournament.

    They have defensive injuries to overcome when they take on a buoyant Portugal on Saturday, but with perhaps the most vocal group of fans in Qatar backing them and huge amounts of belief, they cannot be counted out just yet.

  3. Netherlands

    #6 Netherlands

    Last time: 6th

    In what was their most impressive performance of the tournament so far, the Netherlands largely outclassed the United States to ensure their return to the World Cup will last until at least the quarter-finals.

    Memphis Depay looks to be back to pretty much full fitness after his slow start to Qatar 2022, while manager Louis van Gaal continues to talk up his team's chances of finally winning the trophy for the first time.

    To do so, they will have to beat Argentina on Friday in what is undoubtedly the Oranje's toughest test so far.

  4. Argentina

    #5 Argentina

    Last time: 3rd

    It still feels like Argentina are working themselves out, but they are improving with every game they play, while Lionel Messi is beginning to put together a run of special individual performances.

    The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner seems determined to crown what is likely to be his final World Cup with his first global title, and some of his younger team-mates seem to be relishing the chance to help Messi achieve his dream.

    The Albiceleste will kick-off as favourites against the Netherlands in their quarter-final, but it will be far from straightforward.

  5. Portugal

    #4 Portugal

    Last time: 7th

    Who knew that a team could play with more vibrancy and freedom if they just decided to use Cristiano Ronaldo as an impact sub rather than the focal point of their attack?!

    Fernando Santos' side were superb in dismantling a sorry Switzerland, winning their first knockout tie at the World Cup since 2006 behind Goncalo Ramos' headline-grabbing hat-trick.

    The Benfica youngster will surely lead the line again against Morocco, and if they can maintain this performance level, then they are true World Cup contenders.

  6. England

    #3 England

    Last time: 4th

    England's last-16 clash with Senegal looked a tricky one on paper, but after a couple of early scares, the Three Lions eventually eased through against the African champions.

    Jude Bellingham continues to prove himself one of world football's best midfield talents while Harry Kane is now off the mark after going goal-less during the group stage.

    Their quarter-final France is certainly the most difficult tournament fixture they have had since Gareth Southgate took charge, but the World Cup's joint-top scorers will not be daunted by facing the defending champions.

  7. France

    #2 France

    Last time: 2nd

    France are more than just Kylian Mbappe, but it is the Paris Saint-Germain sensation who continues to dominate coverage of Les Bleus after yet another super individual showing.

    Mbappe is now the frontrunner for the tournament's Golden Boot having scored five times in four matches, and is looking in unstoppable form.

    If that continues, then Didier Deschamps' side have every chance of defending the crown they won back in 2018.

  8. Brazil

    #1 Brazil

    Last time: 1st

    Though South Korea offered little in the way of resistance, Brazil's first-half showing on Monday was undoubtedly the most impressive of the tournament, perhaps until Portugal ran riot 24 hours later.

    The Selecao played with an attacking freedom that will have had the rest of the tournament quivering in anticipation at possibly facing them in the latter stages.

    Tite's side should have more than enough to get past Croatia in the quarter-finals, and a sixth global title will then move into touching distance.