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Winners & Losers from Day 10 of the World Cup

Jorstian Mordan advance, Ecuador don’t, and England looked fun again.

FBL-WC-2022-MATCH34-IRI-USA Photo by GLYN KIRK/AFP via Getty Images

There WILL be Seattle Sounders in the Round of 16! Jorstian Mordan and the rest of their buddies on the US Men’s National Team have advanced out of the Group Stage after their 1-0 win over Iran thanks to a Christian Pulisic goal that cost him an unknown sacrifice. Who knows if either of them will see the field when they face the Netherlands on Saturday — neither did against Iran — but it’s extremely cool that they’re going to get to enjoy this ride for a little longer.

England suppressed a potential Welsh uprising, thanks mostly to Marcus Rashford — not something I would have expected to say before the tournament, to be totally honest — and Qatar and Ecuador both got dumped out of the tournament by the Dutch and Senegal. Qatar had already been eliminated, but Xavier Arreaga’s team just didn’t have enough to beat Senegal with their World Cup futures on the line. Those are the basics, so let’s go a little deeper.


The city of Manchester: England made sure they took care of business against Wales and showed that a relatively dull attacking display against the USMNT was nothing more than an anomaly in their quest for greater glory at this World Cup. A 3-0 win that they dominated from start to finish included a very productive 18 minutes in which Marcus Rashford claimed a brace — the first goal coming on an excellent free kick — and Phil Foden added a goal of his own in his first World Cup start. Club team allegiances are ignored when it’s time to put on your nation’s shirt, but it should warm the hearts of both sides of Manchester that their boys were involved in the goals. To make it that much sweeter, Kalvin Phillips provided the assist on Rashford’s second goal.

USWNT players: The USMNT won on the field, a 1-0 victory over Iran, which sent them through to the Round of 16 of the World Cup. Under the new CBAs signed by the USMNT and USWNT, the two teams pool prize money from tournaments like the World Cup. That means that with the men advancing out of the Group Stage, the women will get their share of the $9 million dollar prize for doing so. Obviously the prizes increase as the tournament progresses, but for now that’s a good start to the new arrangement.


Qatar, again and still: The tiny nation seemed like they’d bitten off much more than they could chew by buying the rights to host the World Cup well before a ball had been kicked. The situation hasn’t really improved from there, as more and more attention has been drawn to the state’s oppressive laws and practices, and to make it all worse things have been historically bad on the field as well. Following their 3-1 loss to Senegal on Friday, Qatar claimed the title of the worst ever performance by a host nation at the Men’s World Cup when they were eliminated after only two games. The final Group Stage game didn’t go any better, as they lost 2-0 to the Netherlands, having been outscored 7-1 in the tournament.

Xavier Arreaga: It’s obviously an honor and a privilege for any player to be called up to represent their national team at a World Cup. Surely it’s somewhat bittersweet to earn that spot, make the trip, and then not even flirt with game time as your team is eliminated in the Group Stage. It probably goes from bittersweet to downright frustrating when your club situation is, perhaps, unstable and you could use the shop window of a World Cup to entice transfer bids from elsewhere. Arreaga’s relationship with the Seattle Sounders seemed to be at least somewhat strained after a pretty clearly homophobic (at a minimum) meme was shared on his Instagram Stories back in September. I can’t claim to know anything about where either party stands now, but it seems clear that this was an opportunity lost.

Storylines to watch on Day 11

7:00 AM - Tunisia vs. France: Tunisia are no pushovers, and I’m not going to predict rotation since that prediction doesn’t seem to be worth much at this point. I’d expect this game to be used by Didier Deschamps to make sure France keep rolling in good form into the Round of 16, where they’ll likely meet either Argentina or Poland. I’d expect to see either or both of Olivier Giroud and Kylian Mbappe to get on the scoresheet, and keeping the Golden Boot race entertaining.

Watch the game on Fox, Telemundo, or streaming on and Peacock.

7:00 AM - Australia vs. Denmark: Australia have already earned their first win in a men’s World Cup since 2010, and with any luck they should be able to advance out of the Group Stage for the first time since 2006. Denmark are no slouches — they played France much closer than Australia did, but they’re opening draw against Tunisia left room for doubt — but Australia are in a position where a draw should be enough to get them into the Round of 16. Denmark boasts a squad full of players playing in top European leagues that Australia just doesn’t have, but the Australian team has an uncommon level of familiarity that could provide the difference.

Watch the game on FS1, Telemundo, or streaming on and Peacock.

11:00 AM - Poland vs. Argentina: I’m not above picking low-hanging fruit, so I’m going to say we should all enjoy getting to watch Leo Messi and Robert Lewandowski playing in what seems likely to be the final World Cup for each. Neither player has reached the same sort of success with their national teams that they have in their club careers, and while it’s possible both teams could advance, neither side will want to leave it to chance, so the burden will likely be on both of their shoulders to guarantee their team moves on. The tournament has seemed set up as Messi’s best shot at the one piece of silverware he’s been missing for a while, but don’t ignore Lewandowski with a chance to take Poland somewhere they haven’t been since 1986: the knockout rounds.

Watch the game on Fox, Telemundo, or streaming on and Peacock.

11:00 AM - Saudi Arabia vs. Mexico: This is Schrodinger’s football match. Until it’s actually been observed, this game is: an interesting but meaningless consolation game, a redemption for Mexico that sees them surprisingly advance after firing their manager, a Saudi Arabia victory that guarantees their place in the Round of 16, or something else entirely. We don’t know, we can’t know, we only know that it could be anything. Mexico have been decidedly disappointing up to this point, but in this World Cup it seems foolish to expect that to remain true. We’ll just have to wait and see what happens.

Watch the game on FS1, Telemundo, or streaming on and Peacock.

You can catch replays of all games in English on or Spanish on Peacock 30 minutes after the final whistle.

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