Asia do not deserve more places at the FIFA World Cup.

COMMENTS

Your story is very interesting and by and large well written. There is a lot of factual information. The biggest problem, however, is the fact that there seems to be no correlation between the graphic and the story. I can’t see how the graphic is used (or explained or described) in the text. The graphic does need to refer to the story and explained. I think you could probably have come up with a stronger graphic if you had looked at the points achieved by Asian teams at the World Cup. For instance if you could show that European teams have achieved an average of say 1.9 points per game and Asian teams 0.6 points, you could have used that.

 

The conversation around whether the world’s most populated continent deserve more places at the FIFA World Cup has been one of huge controversy.

However, the continents frequent pattern of failing to perform at the biggest football tournament shows why they do not deserve more qualifying spaces.

Japan national team Photo: Wikipedia

The World Cup is the biggest footballing event in the world and a reason for the great scale of the competition is that it puts the planets best 32 teams against each other until one claims the title of the best team in the world.

A huge problem with this is that Asia have only one team that is ranked in the FIFA’s top 32 teams, and that is Japan, a side that have never reached the quarter-final stage of the tournament since their World Cup debut in 1954.

Out of the 12 Asian countries that have competed in the World Cup, seven nations best result has been reaching the first round, and three countries best finish is reaching the second round. Only North Korea have reached the quarter-final in 1966 and South Korea finished in fourth place in 2002.

Goal difference for Asian countries against other continents Photo: soccer statistically

In the 2018 World Cup, the only Asian country who qualified for the knock-out round was Japan, who still lost 3-2 in the round of 16. In the World Cup 2018, the heaviest defeat was by Russia against Saudi Arabia, a 5-0 defeat.

The Asian youth teams have not been able to enjoy much more success than the senior sides.

Saudi Arabia is the only country in the continent that has the accolade of a youth World Cup win, and that was in 1989 when their under-16 squad lifted the trophy in Scotland. This was also the only time ever in youth World Cup that a country from Asia has reached the final. No Asian country have come second and third in the Under-17 World Cup

On Transfer Markt, apart from Heung-min Son, no player from Asia countries is worth more than £20 million, whilst 389 players from European nations are worth more than £20 million. Africa, who also have five places, have 36 players who are worth more than £20 million.

To conclude, Asian countries have never continuously performed better than European or South American nations to show that they should have more positions. In addition, Asian countries have never performed well in the youth world cups, and the one time Saudi Arabia did win it, it never meant success in the senior mens competition.