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The biggest winners & losers from 2022 World Cup

The 2022 World Cup drew to a close on Sunday the 18th of December.

The tournament was littered with controversy for obvious reasons ahead of the get-go.

However, despite taking place in the winter, it was one of the more memorable World Cups in recent history, especially the final, which was perhaps the best World Cup showpiece ever.

Following the conclusion of the tournament, 101GreatGoals have picked out the biggest winners and losers of the Qatar World Cup.

📰 Table Of Contents

Biggest winners

Lionel Messi

Whilst many fans have agreed for some time that Lionel Messi is the greatest of all time, his detractors have previously pointed at his international success to instead make a case for Cristiano Ronaldo as the GOAT.

However, with a Copa America win last year and his sensational showing at the 2022 World Cup, which culminated in Messi lifting the trophy, there can now be little doubt over who is the best player of all time.

Jude Bellingham

England’s tournament was ended in the quarter-finals by France, but a number of Gareth Southgate’s men still impressed in Qatar.

The main man to step up for the Three Lions was Jude Bellingham. The 19-year-old dominated in midfield throughout the tournament, with his pressing and tackling simply sensational at times.

And with Bellingham still in the early stages of his career, the World Cup showcased he is likely to become one of the best midfielders on the planet in the coming years.

Goncalo Ramos

With Cristiano Ronaldo’s career winding down, it is time for Portugal to find a new no.9.

And at the 2022 World Cup, Ramos stepped up to become that man. The young forward was handed a chance following Ronaldo’s spat with a South Korean player and he certainly took it, netting a hat-trick on his first-ever WC start vs Switzerland.

Goncalo Ramos is now the youngest man to score a hat trick in a FIFA World Cup knock-out match after Pele.

It was also revealed that Ramos is the first man to score a hat-trick in a World Cup knockout stage game since Tomáš Skuhravý against Costa Rica in 1990.


Whilst no medal came their way, Morocco certainly had a tournament to be proud of.

They reached the semi-final of the World Cup, becoming the first African nation in history to do so.

Morocco also took the scalps of two European giants along the way, seeing off Portugal and Spain in the knockout rounds.

Biggest losers

Cristiano Ronaldo

After his explosive interview with Piers Morgan and his contract being terminated by Manchester United, all eyes were on Cristiano Ronaldo in Qatar.

However, it is fair to say Ronaldo failed to deliver in his last World Cup. The 37-year-old looked well off the pace in most games and as already mentioned, was dropped by Fernando Santos following his spat with a South Korean player in the last-16.


Brazil were heavy favourites heading into the 2022 World Cup.

Their star man, Neymar, was in superb form ahead of the tournament, whilst the rest of their team was littered with superstars.

However, Brazil crashed out in the quarter-finals at the hands of Croatia. A tournament to forget for the South American outfit, with Neymar now likely never to win a WC in his career.

The officials

The World Cup is supposed to be a showcase of the best talent in football battling it out on the big stage.

And whilst the players largely delivered on that front, the officials did not.

The standard of officiating at the tournament was dire, to say the least. And whilst it was poor throughout the tournament, it was shocking in the quarter-finals.

The referee and VAR team for England vs France had a nightmare, with the foul on Bukayo Saka in the build-up to France’s first and the foul on Harry Kane, which was not given, the most notable mistakes on the day.

In another quarter-final – Argentina vs Netherlands – the officials also came in for heavy criticism, including from Lionel Messi.


Champions in 2014, third place in 2010 and 2006, runners-up in 2002, Germany’s record at the World Cup has always been impressive.

However, the last two tournaments have been dismal on the part of the Germans.

They failed to make it out of the group stage in 2018 and despite a change in manager and a whole host of new faces being brought in this year, they once again crashed out in the group stage.

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Picture of Josh Barker

Josh Barker

Middlesbrough fan from the North East of England. @JoshBarker979 on Twitter.

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