The 2022 FIFA World Cup begins this weekend in Qatar with the host nation facing Ecuador on Sunday, November 20. Group C will begin play on Monday, November 21 at 5 a.m. ET between Argentina and Saudi Arabia, with Mexico and Poland facing off later on at 8 a.m. ET. The four teams highlight one of the tightly contested groups of the tournament. The following odds are courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.
Group C winner odds
Saudi Arabia +2200
Argentina are the favorites to make it out of Group C and advance to the knockout stage and it's hard to argue against that belief. They have not lost a match since 2019 and come into the tournament having won the Copa America and besting Euro 2020 champions Italy. Mexico is notably missing Carlos Vela and Javier “Chicharito” Hernández, but they bring back goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa, who is experienced in international competition with El Tri.
Still, they have a formidable opening match ahead of them with Robert Lewandowski and Poland and surrendering three points early on before a date with Messi and Argentina could be too much of a hurdle to overcome. When totaling the final points by the conclusion of group play, a win or draw in the opening match between Mexico and Poland could determine who advances with Argentina to the knockout stage.
Who will advance?
Argentina is among the contenders to win the tournament itself and the depth differential between its roster and Saudi Arabia speaks for itself. Argentina will win Group C and Saudi Arabia’s lack of scoring will mean they will exit the group stage early on. The real question will come down to whether it’ll be Mexico or Poland moving forward, and that pivotal first match could be the deciding factor.
It very well could come down to a juggernaut showdown between Lewandowski and Ochoa, but Poland enters this tournament under-appreciated in the FIFA rankings. The odds have Poland with a slight edge over Mexico to make it out of the group, and I think a win in the opener will give them the advantage over El Tri. A draw in the opener could mean a goal differential ends up being the tiebreaker versus Mexico, but I like Poland to put up much more of a fight in their match against Argentina.
Picks: Argentina, Poland