Qatar vs. Ecuador Best Bets: Time to Kick-Off Your 2022 World Cup Wagering

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Qatar's forward Almoez Ali celebrates with his team after scoring the second goal against the United Arab Emirates. (Photo by JACK GUEZ / AFP).

The moment we’ve all been waiting for has arrived! The 2022 World Cup tournament kicks off this Sunday and we’re supplying you with our highly touted betting predictions for the matchday 1 opening fixture between Qatar and Ecuador.

Continue reading for this weekend’s World Cup 2022 betting preview, soccer analysis and free Qatar 2022 picks for Sunday’s opening game.

Qatar vs. Ecuador

Sunday, November 20, 2022 – 11:00 AM EST at Al Bayt Stadium

The first-ever winter World Cup controversy begins on Sunday, and it's the competition's host team, Qatar, kicking things off when they battle with Ecuador in Group A.

Felix Sanchez Bas will guide Qatar onto the most prominent stage in soccer, for the first time in their history, as their South American opponents return to the competition after 8 years.

  • Qatar is undefeated at halftime in their previous 12 games in all competitions.
  • Qatar is unbeaten in 20 of their last 23 games in all competitions.
  • Ecuador has won just 2 of their last 23 away games in all competitions.
  • From their previous 7 matches, Ecuador is unbeaten 6 in those meetings.

Can Qatar Make History and Win Their First World Cup Game?

The former governing body of FIFA, Sepp Blatter, went on record and admitted Qatar shouldn't have been gifted the hosting position of the World Cup. Still, his opinion won't stop the nation from kicking off the latest edition of the prestigious tournament, as domestic leagues are put on hold so the planet's elite players can gather in the Middle East.

It's been a controversial time for Qatar since they were made hosts, to say the least. However, their on-pitch antics of recent has displayed the desire that Sanchez Bas and his team have to become a history-making squad and make it out of a challenging Group A.

Positivity has been floating around the Qatar locker room, since they went 4-0 in pre-World Cup friendly games against Honduras, Panama, Albania, and Guatemala. And now, the Maroon will attempt to defy the 2022 FIFA World Cup odds and become a debutant that wins their opening game for the first time in over 20 years.

In addition, Bas and co. will want to dodge becoming a cliché host nation that fails to make it out of the group. But a victory on matchday 1 would make history as they'd become the lone AFC team to win their first World Cup meeting.

Group Stage Difficulty for Ecuador

The South American nation return to World Cup competition after failing to make the cut at France 2018, but positioning themselves as a severe threat in the past hasn't held much weight.

Ecuador competed in the 2002, 2006, and 2014 World Cup tournaments, but failed to surpass the group stage in all but one of those competitions. The Ecuadorian nation hasn't seen a World Cup Round of 16 since 2006; notably, this was the last time they won an opening game.

Since the beginning of June, Gustavo Alfaro has guided this team into becoming a defensive unit. In 6 meetings, they obtained 6 consecutive clean sheets; however, they've also struggled to find the net themselves.

Qatar vs. Ecuador Matchday 1: Game Prediction and Picks

The 2022 World Cup odds supply plus money on either team to win this encounter, but Ecuador is the notable betting favorite at the best sportsbooks.

These 2 sides have met on 3 occasions, as the hosting nation has won one, drawn one, and lost one. This doesn't assist our weekend predictions, but a complete shutout from either team isn't expected.

That said, Ecuador's clean sheet streak will likely run dry, as this Qatar squad boasts enough attacking talent to penetrate their South American opponent's defense. And because Ecuador owns a respectable, clean sheet record, the odds for Over 1.5 goals are priced well.

To finalize, Qatar's home crowd could intimidate Ecuador, and they've notably played their best football in the first 45 minutes of action.

For this reason, we expect the scoreline to be level at halftime, and most of the action will arrive when tired defenses can be compromised.

Correct Score Pick: Qatar 1 - 2 Ecuador (+850) at Everygame

World Cup Pick: Half-Time Draw (-125) at Everygame

World Cup Pick: Over 1.5 Goals (-192) at Everygame (visit our Everygame Review)

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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.