FIFA 23 and EA Sports Just Simulated the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Here’s What Happened…
The long-awaited release of FIFA 23 – the final title of the FIFA franchise – has coincided neatly with the inaugural winter World Cup. With the world’s 32 best footballing nations boarding flights to the Middle Eastern peninsula of Qatar, EA Sports recently opted to up the ante by using the new FIFA 23 to simulate the outcome of the tournament.
EA Sports have been simulating the World Cup competition since 2006. Back then, it incorrectly predicted that the Czech Republic would reign supreme, but the Czechs remarkably failed to qualify for the knockout stages let alone the final.
However, the simulations for the last three World Cup tournaments have each time correctly predicted the winner. After landing the hat trick in 2018 with France, FIFA 23 is looking to make it four in a row. The simulation predicts that Lionel Messi and Argentina will be the ones lifting the Jules Rimet trophy in Doha.
At the time of writing, the Argentinians are considered second favorites with sportsbooks for the 2022 FIFA World Cup. They are available at the best price of +1200 with FanDuel Sportsbook, which is regarded by OddsChecker as having one of the top-five new customer campaigns ahead of Qatar 2022. Argentina’s bitter South American rivals Brazil are the sportsbooks’ favorites to win the competition, but FIFA 23’s simulation has predicted the ‘Samba Boys’ will be the bridesmaid and not the bride.
This time around, FIFA 23 believes Argentina will lock horns with long-time adversaries Brazil in an all-South American final.
The fall-out from FIFA 23’s simulation of the 2022 World Cup
FIFA 23 suggests that host nation Qatar will not advance out of their group, which will be of no surprise to most football fans. The Qataris have little football heritage – which has begged the question as to why they’re hosting the competition in the first place. They could even be the whipping boys of Group A.
England and the USA qualified out of Group B, although Gareth Southgate’s Three Lions fell at the last 16 stage in a 3-1 defeat to the Netherlands. FIFA 23 predicts that the USA will reach the quarter-finals after overcoming Senegal in the last 16. However, the might of the French proved too powerful for Gregg Berhalter’s men in the last eight.
The other side of the draw features arguably the greatest tie of the last 16, with Germany going head-to-head with Belgium. In the simulation, Germany edged out Roberto Martinez’ Belgians 2-1 to seal a quarter-final clash with Brazil, who romped past South Korea in the last 16. Croatia and Portugal also negotiated their way into the quarter-finals against Spain and Switzerland respectively.
Portugal, led by Cristiano Ronaldo – potentially playing in his final major tournament – edged out Croatia to reach the semi-finals, where they were knocked out in heart-breaking fashion by Brazil on penalties. On the other side of the draw, France defeated USA to reach the last four, while Argentina also won a nervy quarter-final against the Netherlands.
Argentina went on to overcome France in the semis, and then Brazil in the final. France took the third-place playoff victory against the Portuguese.
The FIFA simulation predicts that Lionel Messi will win the Golden Boot for the 2022 World Cup, while the Golden Glove will be won by compatriot Emiliano Martinez. Martinez has tied four ways for this accolade but took the award by virtue of being the last keeper standing.
Try the new 2022 World Cup mode on FIFA 23
It’s also worth noting that EA Sports has released free downloadable content for the 2022 World Cup. The licensed FIFA 2022 World Cup mode is playable offline and online via FIFA Ultimate Team (FUT). It includes all the real stadia, players, and kits to add a new dimension to your World Cup fix.
EA Sports has confirmed that the 2022 World Cup mode will be made available for the remaining cycle of FIFA 23, which makes it the perfect sign-off for this iconic franchise.