Poland have reached the last 16 of the World Cup for the first time since 1986 as they look to address what is a modest record.
The Poles recorded third-placed finishes twice in the space of eight years; achieving the feat in West Germany and Spain in 1974 and 1982, respectively.
However, after making the knockout stages in 1986, Poland have failed at the group stage in the three World Cups they had qualified for – but in Qatar it would not be four from four.
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Latest Poland odds to win the World Cup
|Betting Market||Bet UK|
|Poland to win the World Cup||200/1|
|Poland to reach semi-final odds||11/1|
|Poland to reach quarter-final odds||4/1|
|Robert Lewandowski World Cup Golden Boot odds||60/1|
Our recommended Poland bet for World Cup 2022
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Not many expected Poland to get out of their group and a second-placed finish has given them a tough last 16 draw. It is likely that their tournament ends here, but it may be worth a speculative prediction of them to upset the favourites in their next clash.
Poland route to the World Cup 2022 Final in Qatar
Group stage results
|Mexico 0-0 Poland||Stadium 974||22 November 2022|
|Poland 2-0 Saudi Arabia||Education City Stadium||26 November 2022|
|Poland 0-2 Argentina||Stadium 974||30 November 2022|
Poland were given an extremely tough group and their first game, a goalless draw against Mexico, proved to be vital. After beating Saudi Arabia and losing to Argentina, Poland only made it through to the last 16 on goal difference – finishing one goal ahead of third-placed Mexico.
For a short moment it looked as though they would be going through on fair play, picking up fewer yellow cards, but that tie-breaker was nullified by a late goal from Salem Al-Dawsari vs Mexico.
Who could Poland meet in the knockout rounds?
Poland may have made it to the last 16 but their reward for doing so is a tie against world champions France. Should Poland upset the odds against Les Bleus then they will face the winner of England vs Senegal, with many expecting it to be the former. If they get through, Germany would be the potential opponents in the semi-final before final boss Brazil in the final. But that’s if everything goes as expected, and we know that doesn’t happen in Qatar 2022.
|Route as Group C runners up||Potential opponent|
|Round of 16||France|
Confirmed Poland World Cup 2022 squad
|Jan Bednarek||Defender||26||Aston Villa|
|Artur Jedrzejczyk||Defender||35||Legia Warsaw|
|Matty Cash||Defender||25||Aston Villa|
|Kamil Grosicki||Midfielder||34||Pogon Szczecin|
|Damian Szymanski||Midfielder||27||AEK Athens|
|Krystian Bielik||Midfielder||24||Birmingham City|
|Michal Skoras||Midfielder||22||Lech Poznan|
Poland players to watch at this year’s World Cup 2022
Poland top World Cup Golden Boot contender – Robert Lewandowski
There was only ever going to be one favourite for a Polish Golden Boot winner and that’s Robert Lewandowski. The 2022 World Cup his likely to be Lewandowski’s last and the Barcelona forward is Poland’s most-capped player and record scorer. And in Poland’s 2-0 win over Saudi Arabia, Lewandowski’s long wait for a World Cup goal ended, capitalising on a defensive error – having missed a penalty in the goalless draw vs Mexico.
Poland player to watch – Piotr Zielinski
Outside of Lewandowski, Piotr Zielinski is the Polish man in form right now, directly involved in seven goals in nine matches across all competitions for Serie A leaders Napoli. If Lewandowski struggles in a match, Poland will be looking for Zielinski to help pick up the slack but also to create for the Barcelona man. If Zielinski has an off day, there is every chance Poland will too.
Poland emerging player to look out for – Nicola Zalewski
A favourite of Jose Mourinho, Zalewski recently beat the likes of Edoardo Camavinga and Antonio Silva to win the 2022 European Golden Boy Web award. The wing-back’s impressive performances in the absence of Leonardo Spinazzola have generated interest from the likes of PSG and Tottenham, with Giallorossi director Tiago Pinto saying of the 22-year-old academy graduate: “He has amazing technique. He has the right mentality. In my opinion, he will become a great player.”
Poland tactical analysis & likely formation at the World Cup
Poland have tested a few different formations recently but they seem to favour a back four more than most. After starting the World Cup with a 4-2-3-1, Poland have moved to variations of the 4-4-2, opting for a strike partnership with Karol Swiderski and Arkadiusz Milik tested alongside Lewandowski. In this system, Zielinski plays out wide but does get forward more as essentially a third attacker.
The experienced Grzegorz Krychowiak has been one part of the double pivot, providing protection for the defence but also being the link between the backline and the attack. Poland’s use of full-backs are also interesting, especially with Matty Cash earning his spot back in the squad after injury. In Cash and Bartosz Bereszynski Poland have a full-back who loves to attack (Cash) and one who is a lot more solid defensively (Bereszynski), which can help Poland switch to a back three in possession.
Where are Poland in the Fifa world rankings?
Poland are currently 26th in the world and are the lowest-ranked European nation at the World Cup this winter.
Who is the Poland manager?
Czeslaw Michniewicz is the new Poland manager, replacing Paulo Sousa at the start of the year after the Portuguese boss left to take charge of Flamengo.
Who is the current Poland captain?
Robert Lewandowski is Poland captain, first taking the armband in March 2013.
How many times have Poland won the World Cup?
Poland have never won the World Cup but have twice finished third, in 1974 and 1982.
How many times have Poland competed in the World Cup?
This is Poland’s ninth appearance at the World Cup and the third-time they have qualified for back-to-back tournaments. Their best run of World Cup appearances came between 1974 and 1986 when they were involved in four consecutive tournaments.
Who has scored Poland most goals in World Cup tournaments?
Grzegorz Lato has scored more goals for Poland at World Cups than any other player, netting 10 times across three tournaments including seven to help his side finish third in 1974.
Which player from Poland has the most World Cup appearances?
Wladyslaw Zmuda has played 21 matches for Poland at World Cups, more than any other player, with those appearances coming across four tournaments between 1974 and 1986.