Not wanting to spoil the tournament before kick-off in Qatar, it looks like Argentina could celebrate in 2022. the world championship. That’s if EA Sports’ predictions come true after the company used FIFA 23 to simulate the Nov. 20-Dec. 18 tournament and pre-crowned champions.
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Using FIFA 23 and the detailed player rankings used in the various FIFA World Cup game modes, EA Sports played all 64 matches from the group stage to the final and found that Lionel Messi and Co. glory awaits. Additionally, according to EA Sports, Messi will win the Golden Boot and Ballon d’Or for being the tournament’s top scorer and best player, respectively.
Messi also made the predicted team of the tournament, where he was joined by four of his players Albiceleste teammates Emiliano Martinez, Marcos Acuna, Leandro Paredes and Rodrigo de Paul. The remaining places were filled by Marquinhos, Vinicius Junior and Richarlison from Brazil; Raphael Varane and Kylian Mbappe from France and Joao Cancelo from Portugal.
Now, before you start dismissing EA Sports predictions as just another common PR stunt, you should know that they boast an impressive track record when it comes to successfully predicting World Cup winners. They ran similar simulations before in 2010, 2014 and 2018. world championships and each time they picked the correct winner of the tournament in advance: Spain, Germany and France respectively.
🇪🇸 ✅ 2010
🇩🇪 ✅ 2014
🇫🇷 ✅ 2018
— EA SPORTS FIFA (@EASPORTSFIFA) in 2022 November 8
But beyond just picking clear winners, things quickly start to fall apart as EA Sports also offers a number of World Cup prophecies that have failed to come true and aged poorly.
For example, it was believed that Brazil would not enter until 2014. world championship final. Scientists may remember that Selecao Winners Germany were thoroughly humiliated 7-1 in the semi-final, a result that shocked the world and shocked the hosts.
Also in 2014 EA Sports have predicted that defending champions Spain will beat neighbors Portugal 3-1 in the third-place play-off, but neither team will progress from their group.
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Spain national team Isco 2018 won the “Golden Boot” at the World Cup by scoring five goals. In fact, the midfielder managed to find the back of the net just once (in the group stage against Morocco). La Roja lost to host Russia in the round of 16 after a penalty shootout. However, in 2018 EA Sports simulations predicted Antoine Griezmann would also score five goals, and in fact he netted four times to finish second on the scoring chart as France won their second World Cup.
Also in 2018, David de Gea was predicted as the best goalkeeper and Gabriel Jesus was awarded as the best young player. The former was widely panned for a horrendous officiating error against Portugal in the group stage, while the latter played five times before being eliminated at the quarter-finals after failing to score a single goal against Brazil.
However, you won’t be able to win them all. And after correctly predicting the last three World Cup winners, backing a team on a 35-game unbeaten run – two shy of Italy’s record 37-game unbeaten run – looks like a pretty big call.