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Argentina

Messi names 'great candidates' Brazil and France as World Cup favourites

1:11 AM SGT 20/10/22
Lionel Messi Argentina
Lionel Messi has named Brazil and France as his favourites to win the World Cup in Qatar this year.
  • Argentina star picks his World Cup favourites
  • Backs France and Brazil as top candidates
  • Believes Deschamps and Tite will be key

WHAT HAPPENED? The showpiece event in Qatar kicks off on November 20, as the world's top national teams battle it out for the crown. France are the reigning champions, but there are many teams hoping to dethrone Didier Deschamps' men. Messi has picked Paris Saint-Germain co-stars Kylian Mbappe and Neymar to be among the candidates to win it with France and Brazil respectively.

WHAT THEY SAID: The Argentina star told DIRECTV Sports: "We always say the same great teams... but, if I have to choose, Brazil and France are the two great candidates to win the World Cup.

"They've had the same group [of players] for a long time, working well. France, aside from the last Euros when they were eliminated [in the last 16] and did badly, they have some impressive players. They have a clear idea and the same coach [Didier Deschamps]. Brazil is a bit the same [under Tite]."

THE BIGGER PICTURE: France will have to fight off Australia, Denmark and Tunisia in their group, while Brazil take on Serbia, Switzerland and Cameroon for a place in the knockout rounds. Messi and his Argentina side, meanwhile, will meet Saudi Arabia, Poland and Mexico in Group C.

IN THREE PHOTOS:

WHAT NEXT FOR ARGENTINA? Before the World Cup campaign kicks off, Argentina will play a friendly against United Arab Emirates on November 16. Six days later, they will face Saudi Arabia in their opening game of the competition