FIFA World Cup 2022 is just a match away from concluding as France and Argentina are all set to battle it out for their 3rd FIFA World title. Defending champions France have become the first nation in decades to reach back to back WC finals but can they become the second nation to retain the World cup?
They have shows signs of being a true champion team but Argentina will try their best to stop Les Blues. The South Americans are also searching for their 3rd World title and first since 1986. This world cup has become even more special because it is Lionel Messi’s last Campaign at the grandest stage.
Can he become the Messiah? Or will Kylian Mbappe and co. steal his one last wish. We will find that out on Sunday but before that let’s talk about the best 3 Masterminds of this FIFA World cup who have directed their teams to play in the best way possible. So without further to do, let’s dive right into this feature.
1. Didier Deschamps – How can the Frenchman miss out from this feature? He has steadied the French ship right before it was about to crash. Despite Injuries, Scandals and out of form players, the 54-year-old has managed the defending champions really well. For a fact when he leaves the France managerial job vacant, a lot of clubs and countries will look to have him by their side. But what has made him so special? Despite so many injuries, Deschamps found a way to make it work. Some of the key players (could have been) were one by one getting ruled out of the tournament but he has still become the 4th manager in the history of FIFA WC to reach back to back Finals and first since 1990. He has usually structured France on a 4-3-2-1 system and evolved the side from playing a free flowing-dominant football to a low risk taking, conservative and high on team spirit team. When he chose to with a 4-3-3 formation, his team suffered a loss against Tunisia by 1-0. Regardless of that loss, France are still in the Final. They haven’t been dominating in this edition as compared to the last but they have rather focused on moments where they can easily capitalize on. Deschamps ensured his team makes timely interceptions and goes for attack when there is space on offer. He has also kept the team spirit high and positive. In terms of changes or substitutions, he has been spot on. Despite having less players in the team, Deschamps has helped veterans like Giroud and Griezmann find the tune. This year they haven’t been dominating possession that much but it has worked right for them. Timely substitutions and smart assessments have worked well. As it was mentioned earlier, France doesn’t look very dominating and ruthless but they do win the most crucial stages and come out on top in key moments of the game.
🏆 1993 Captain of Marseille, winner of their only UCL 🇫🇷
🏆 1998 Captain of the World Cup winners
🏆 2000 Captain of EURO winners
🥈 2016 EURO Finalist
🏆 2018 World Cup Winner
🏆 2021 Nations League Winner
⏳ 2022 World Cup Finalist
Respect for Didier Deschamps ❤️🇫🇷 pic.twitter.com/Hn33Ctc3u4
— Football Tweet ⚽ (@Football__Tweet) December 16, 2022
2. Lionel Scaloni – The former Argentina Right back has been instrumental in most of the success that La Albiceleste has tasted in a while. He helped Messi win his first ever International trophy through the Copa America in 2021 followed by the Finalissima against Italy. Now he has the chance of delivering another title for the South Americans in the form of World cup. If we talk about the tactical side of his management then he has not made many changes other than a few. Argentina’s WC campaign did not get off to a very good start as they lost to Saudi Arabia by 2-1. However, since then the team has been on an upswing. If we look at their team against Croatia, 8 of the 11 players were the same from that loss against Saudi. Scaloni added Enzo Fernandes in the midfield to gain more control in the middle of the park. Fernandes inclusion into the team paid off really well. The 44-year-old has been successful in building a supportive and hard working team around match winner Lionel Messi and the system Scaloni uses has been getting the best out of Messi. Argentina initially were struggling to control the game in the middle as they were reliant on building attacks from the wider areas but since adding Enzo Fernandes in the midfield it gave Argentina an extended thrust. Messi could play in his favored position and it helped the side very well. Another tactical shift was Julian Alvarez’s inclusion. The energetic and pacey number 9 somewhat eased the pressure on Messi to score goals. One of the key ability of Messi is that he attracts defenders around him and Alvarez takes the space to exploit and score goals. Alexis Mac Allister has also played a good role and Scaloni has recognized the right players who can influence the game. His in game management has also facilitated Argentina and one more match remains for a World cup glory.
Argentina coach Lionel Scaloni says that Lionel Messi is with 'no doubt' the greatest of all-time 🐐 pic.twitter.com/16JyEX72U2
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) December 14, 2022
3. Walid Regragui – Despite not having many star players in the team, Walid Regragui did the best thing possible with the Moroccan team. He controlled the team really especially from a situation where players were not ready to represent the nation after getting a very tough group at the world cup. Most notably, Hakim Ziyech retired after a disappointing AFCON at the beginning of this year. His main focus has always been on the team’s Defense and he is unapologetic about it. After all it was the defense that helped the Atlas Lions become the first African nation to reach the last 4. They allowed only one goal from open play at Qatar but after the exit of certain players from the team they conceded 2 goals in 90 minutes against France. He mainly based his tactics on defense and go for counter attacks. Their attacking front had creativity and pace, especially Hakim Ziyech but they failed to end the chances they got against France. Overall, Walid Regragui had a successful campaign but can he added the World cup Bronze medal in his cabinet?
Walid Regragui has only been in charge of Morocco for 3 months.
Hakim Ziyech came out of international retirement for this World Cup
Beat Belgium, Spain and Portugal.
This Morocco team are the story of this World Cup 👏🇲🇦 pic.twitter.com/kV9NB5ts6p
— ESPN UK (@ESPNUK) December 14, 2022