Manchester City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan has claimed that his country Germany, defending champions France, England and Brazil are the four favorites to win the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar later this year.
Gundogan, who featured for Die Mannschaft in the last edition of the tournament, has been a vital squad member of the German team since making his international debut in 2011. Due to a back injury, the 31-year-old missed out on lifting the prestigious trophy in the summer of 2014.
He made one appearance in the 2018 edition, coming on as a substitute in Germany’s 2-1 win over Sweden. The four-time FIFA World Cup winners were knocked out of the group-stages last time around, but are expected to make a mark under head coach Hansi Flick in Qatar.
During a Q/A session on Twitter, Gundogan was asked about the potential winners of the upcoming FIFA World Cup. He answered:
“Hopefully Germany. My other favourite teams are England, France and Brazil.”
When asked about his thoughts of the World Cup in Qatar being held in winter, he answered:
“It’s a bit weird and no one still really knows how it will feel and also how to come back into the normal season afterwards with only some days off. But I would say it’s still better than playing in Qatar during the hot summer.”
Germany have been drawn in Group E of the 2022 FIFA World Cup alongside Spain, Japan and Costa Rica. The competition will kick off on November 21, and the final is scheduled for December 18.
Ilkay Gundogan on his way out of Manchester City this summer?
According to Calciomercato (via Mirror), Manchester City are considering the possibility of a swap deal with Serie A giants Juventus involving Gundogan and Arthur Melo.
The German midfielder, who is in the final year of his current deal at the Etihad Stadium, played a crucial role in his team’s 2021-22 Premier League title triumph. He scored twice in a 3-2 victory against Aston Villa on the final matchday as the Citizens won the league title by a solitary point.
Last season, he registered 10 goals and six assists in 43 appearances across all competitions for Manchester City. The 31-year-old, who has won four Premier League titles since joining City in 2016, has scored 49 goals and provided 33 assists in 254 matches across competitions for the English champions.
The former Borussia Dortmund man is expected to rack up fewer playing minutes in the 2022-23 season following the arrival of midfielder Kalvin Phillips from Leeds United for £42 million earlier this summer.
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