When the 2022 World Cup draw was announced, there was one bit of uncertainty for the USMNT (U.S. Men’s National Team): who would be the fourth team in their group?
The Group B draw featured the United States, England, and Iran, but the fourth team would need to be decided after a European playoff between Ukraine, Wales, and Scotland.
Last week, Wales secured its spot as the fourth team in Group B, beating Ukraine 1-0. It took nine saves from goalie Wayne Hennessey as Ukraine’s nine shots on goal were the most by a team without scoring a goal in the 2022 European World Cup qualifying.
Yet not only is Wales in the 2022 World Cup, but they enter with better odds to win Group B than the USMNT.
2022 World Cup Group B Odds
|Country||Odds to Win Group|
Odds courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook
As we can see, England enters as the clear favorite in Group B and one of the favorites to win the entire World Cup. Meanwhile, both the USMNT and Wales will be trying to break a poor run of form in recent years.
Wales hasn’t qualified for the World Cup since 1958, while the USMNT failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup. It was the first time they had failed to qualify since 1986.
The USMNT will quickly get a chance to prove that their projected third-place finish in their group is a mistake as the United States and Wales will face off on November 21st in the first 2022 World Cup game for either side.
This is not the same United States team that missed the 2018 World Cup. Led by young stars like Christian Pulisic, Weston McKennie, and Brenden Aaronson, the United States has explosive players who could potentially cause havoc for opponents.
Of course, they have yet to prove it on the world stage.
Wales’ manager Rob Page has called the team’s match-up against the United States a “winnable game,” so the United State can look to make a statement right from the start.
With these teams separated by just three spots in the FIFA Rankings – the United States at 15th and Wales at 18th – it should be a hotly contested match and one that makes the U.S. an intriguing bet given the current betting odds.