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Qatar vs Ecuador: Where to watch World Cup Opener, preview, lineups

Qatar Soccer team logo and Ecuador Soccer team logo on top of World Cup 2022 Banner with trophy

The most awaited sporting competition in the world is set to kick off with the host nation Qatar taking on Ecuador on the 20th of November, Sunday at the Al Bayt Stadium. This is the first match of Group A with the home team predicted to struggle against the team from South America. Ecuador could prove to be too strong for Qatar as they finished fourth in the CONMEBOL qualifying tournament, although they have hardly played anyone outside of their continent, they would be the favorites heading into the opener of the highly controversial world cup. Focusing on football let’s dive into the details of the Qatar vs Ecuador preview, lineups, and how to watch live online.

Start Time, When, and where to watch live online:

Kick-off: 11 am ET, 4 pm GMT, Sunday

Stadium: Al Bayt Stadium, Al Khor

Channels: BBC One, Fox Sport 1, Telemundo

Live Stream: OolaTV, BBC iPlayer

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Team News

Gustavo Alfaro’s South American side was extraordinarily strong during the qualifying rounds. Defensively they proved difficult to break down. With 6 clean sheets in 6 friendly matches leading up to the world cup, they will be stubborn and difficult to break down as expected.

Qatar is a lesser-known team on the international stage as they have not played much football competitively but the glimmer of hope and source of confidence for them could be the third-place finish in the Arab Cup.

Qatar’s medical team is on high alert ahead of their match against Ecuador, as they prepare to without Ahmed Alaaeldin who came off in the 26th minute last week with an injury. However, it is expected that he’ll be back for this game though so there isn’t too much risk here!

Qatar plays with a strongly knit-together 5-3-2 system. Their coach, Felix Sanchez Bas, has incorporated a system of coherence and consistency. They are expected to play the same way in the first match of group A. The experienced Akram Afif and Almoez Alli will surely lead the line for them.

Ecuador, on the other hand, is a versatile side. They are used to playing in different systems and are highly adaptable. The team has been deployed in various systems, ranging from 4-2-3-1, 4-3-3, and 4-4-1-1. They have an extraordinarily strong midfield with Premier League side Brighton’s Moises Caicedo at the heart of it. The two doubts for Ecuador’s opener would be Carlos Gruezo and most likely Sarmiento as he has been struggling with an injury recently.

The Ecuadorian national team has been hit with a major blow ahead of the World Cup as their best player and brightest hope for success, Byron Castillo was ruled out through injury just days before they were due in FIFA.

Qatar vs Ecuador Betting Odds

While Ecuador is a strong team, Qatar is considered the underdog in this matchup. However, don’t count Qatar out just yet—the team has shown great improvement in recent years, and they may just surprise everyone with a victory. The odds may be against them, but anything can happen in the World Cup.

Qatar to win: 5/4

Draw: 2/1

Ecuador to win: 12/5

Note: Odds via Betfair and subject to change.

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Qatar Predicted Lineups

Qatar is looking forward to seeing striker Almoez Ali take on Ecuador in their opening World Cup match. The Qataris hope that he can lead them into victory as hosts, and possibly even help his team gain points early in this tournament edition of the competition!

The Qatari team will likely field a defense-first lineup in their World Cup debut against Albanians. Coach Felix Sanchez Bas is considering bringing Ahmed Alaaeldin back into the fold, but there are fitness concerns over his availability for tonight’s match so far as well.”

Qatar Lineups: GK: Al-Sheeb, Defense: Miguel, Al-Wari, Salman, Hassan, Ahmed, Mid: Hatem, Boudiaf, Al-Haydos, Attack: Alli, Afif

Ecuador Predicted Lineups:

Ecuador manager Gustavo Alfaro has called all 26 players into his World Cup 2022 roster for this Sunday’s opener against Qatar at the Al Bayt Stadium.

With Lima’s Caicedo coming straight into midfield alongside Jose Cifuentes as well as Gruezo; players like Plata or Ibarra will support 35-goal talisman Enner Valencia up top.

Ecuador Lineups: GK: Dominguez, Defense: Preciado, Torres, Hincapie, Estupinan, Mid: Gruezo, Caicedo, Cifuentes, Attack: Plata, Valencia, Mena

Qatar vs Ecuador Prediction

As explained, Ecuador will prove to be difficult to break down as they are very strong defensively. We predict that they will keep a clean sheet. Qatar, comparatively, is very weak at the back. They play attacking football so it will be a clash of styles, Defense Vs Attack.

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The South American side is not free-scoring as they are defensive so we expect a hard-fought 1-0 win for Ecuador. Qatar will try hard but will fail to break down the defense.

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