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Who are the most important players in Group C at the Qatar World Cup 2022?

So, we’ve had Group A and Group B (no need to talk about Edouard Mendy, OK?)

But here we go with Group C. I promise these were done before the games. Group D is out now as well.

Group C

Argentina – Lionel Messi

Of course, I’m not so evil as to leave out the best player who has ever played the game, and who will be competing in his record-breaking fifth World Cup. We, as football fans, all secretly want the boy from Rosario who came to us with that floppy hair (although slightly less voluminous than Brenden Aaronson’s) finally lifts the trophy he lacks in his already huge cabinet: will it be this time, Lionel?

Saudi Arabia – Salman Alfaraj

I really doubt anything will happen against Argentina but if it does, Alfaraj will more than likely be at the heart of the action. The Al-Hilal midfielder is Saudi Arabia’s star creator in the middle of the park and his close control coupled with his great striking ability means that any result a frankly poor Saudi side get will no doubt have his name in the byline. If you’re not impressed with Saudi Arabia, chances are Alfaraj has made you say “wooo” at least once during the tournament.

(*edit* why did I bother to make a prediction?)

Mexico – Edson Álvarez

Somebody in Mexico has drawn the card of uncertainty from the hand of the football gods, and has subsequently therefore subjected their nation to a period of, well, uncertainty regarding Tata Martino and his squad list. One minute Raúl Jiménez is on a plane back from Mexico to Wolverhampton (I know where I’d prefer to be) and the next minute he’s choosing the goal music at the stadium for when he scores in the final. That’s why I’ve gone with Edson Álvarez, the Ajax superstar who I’ve not had a chance to talk about because I’ve been too busy talking about Raúl – you see how hard it must be to support Mexico?

Full screen

Hirving Lozano (27)Chris Brunskill/FantasistaGetty

Poland – Robert Lewandowski

I won’t lie, I almost went with Piotr Zielinski. But then I realised that, just as with Lionel Messi and Argentina, you can’t leave out a legend of the game when talking about the most influential players. Despite the criticism on the Pole in the biggest matches of FC Barcelona’s season so far, he has romped to the top of the scoring charts in La Liga and looks like he is a bigger threat than ever to any poor defender who has the misfortune of playing against him. Let’s hope goalscorer RoboCop Robert turns up and not the one who we’ve seen disappear on the big stage.

Group E and F out tomorrow. The others will follow. Remember you can check out the full World Cup guide here and tell me how wrong I am on Twitter, @English_AS.

Group C fixtures

22 November: Lusail Stadium: Argentina 1-2 Saudi Arabia 08:00 am ET /05:00 am PT

22 November: Stadium 974: Mexico 0-0 Poland 02:00 pm ET /11:00 am PT

26 November: Education City Stadium: Poland-Saudi Arabia 05:00 am ET /02:00 am PT

26 November: Lusail Stadium: Argentina-Mexico 2:00 pm ET /11:00 am PT

30 November: Stadium 974: Poland-Argentina 2:00 pm ET /11:00 am PT

30 November: Lusail: Saudi Arabia-Mexico 2:00 pm ET /11:00 am PT

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