The football world breathed a sigh of relief the night Lionel Messi’s Argentina sealed qualification for the 2018 World Cup. However, there are some teams; teams who you simply EXPECT to see at a World Cup who have not qualified.
Ghana has been at the last three World Cups, famously coming within a horrendous Luis Suarez handball of making the semi-finals in 2010. Unfortunately for them, they won’t be in Russia next summer; thanks partly to an equally awful bit of bad luck; an incorrect offside decision.
4. Wales Less than two years ago, Wales celebrated after they qualified for a major tournament for the first time since 1958. And they were more successful as the likes of Gareth Bale, Ashley Williams and Aaron Ramsey swept aside Belgium in the quarter-finals before falling to Portugal in the semis.
A year on, and the Welsh dream of qualifying for their first World Cup in 60 years has melted.
Chile boss Juan Antonio Pizzi announced he will quit just hours after their World Cup qualifying heartache. Bizarrely, it was Arsenal keeper David Ospina making a howler for Colombia against Peru which ensured his teammate Alexis Sanchez will not be in Russia.
What can one say about Netherlands? The team has always been the bridesmaid at major tournaments and has never won the World Cup in spite of reaching the final thrice. And now on, no road to Russia! And we won’t miss Arjen Robben just for the 2018 World Cup, as he retired from international football.
— françois pinet (@francoispinet) November 13, 2017
To many people, a World Cup without Italy is unthinkable. On Monday evening it became reality as a 0-0 draw sent the Azzurri tumbling out of the competition. As result, another legend retired from international football.
Among his farewell words, Buffon said “I’m not sorry for myself but all of the Italian football. We failed at something which also means something on a social level. There’s regret at finishing like that.”