World Football

Written in the Stars, FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Official Film: Review

Hardik Malhotra

March 28 2023
Written in the Stars, FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Official Film: Review

Fans can watch the documentary on FIFA+.

FIFA has released its documentary on the recently concluded World Cup in Qatar, in December, named “Written in the Stars”.

FIFA, the global governing body for football, has released their documentary ‘Written in the Stars’ on the very successful World Cup 2022 in Qatar, which is an hour and a half long in duration, and is narrated by acclaimed Welsh actor, Michael Sheen.

Written in the Stars begins in a manner of jubilant optimism of an Arab country, Qatar hosting the World Cup for the first time, and a moment of pride for the entire Middle East, the Arab world & Asia. Qatar also became the smallest country ever to host the FIFA World Cup with a population of 2.62 million inhabitants. The hosts ended up losing 0-2 in the first match of the tournament, however, there were a lot of positives to take away for the hosts. Their neighbour, Saudi Arabia, pulled off the greatest upset possible in defeating eventual winners Saudi Arabia.

Their Coach Herve Renard’s famous speech “What are we doing? Is this our way of pressing? What do you want: to take a picture with Messi?”, inspired them to a comeback 2-1 victory, in the second half, pulling off one of the greatest upsets in World Cup history, besides an all-time great motivational speech.

A similar story was seen in Australia’s unlikely qualification as they pulled off an improbable 1-0 victory, late against Denmark, who were favourites to go through in the Group after France. The Socceroos coach was extremely animated on the sidelines and was barking out instructions to his players, as well as contesting refereeing decisions with the fourth official. His half-time words of “We need fight, We need effort!” reflected in their second-half performance, as Matthew Leckie scored the winning goal in the 60th minute, & went to face Argentina in the Round of 16.

Group opponents Tunisia pulled off another upset, as they defeated former colonisers France 1-0, in the final group match but were left heartbroken, as Australia pipped them to the second spot. Although there were scenes of immense celebration on the streets of Tunis, & the Arab world had another moment to celebrate a shared victory. Canada’s first World Cup with John Herdman, an Englishman leading them to Qatar after 1986, ended in losses in all matches in the group stage.

There were numerous other storylines from famous exits for huge nations such as Germany and Uruguay (Winners of six World Cups) exiting in the Group stages to smaller nations to the first-ever representation from all continents in the knockout stages. No team was​​ able to win all three group matches, for the first time since 1994, either. From South Korea famously winning against Portugal in the 91st minute, to Ghana’s failure to exact revenge against Uruguay in 2010, contrasting emotions of highs & lows were felt throughout the group stages as fans experienced the true emotions of a victory or defeat in a World Cup.

With 172 goals, Qatar 2022 became the highest-scoring World Cup in history. From Giroud’s record-breaking 52nd goal for France to Richarlison’s acrobatic overhead kick against Serbia, every goal was celebrated as much as the previous one.

In the knock-out stages, Yassine Bounou’s goalkeeping heroics, helped Morocco become the only African side to reach the semi-final stage, and upset stronger opponents Spain & their Iberian neighbours, Portugal, in the Round of 16 & Quarter-finals respectively, and cemented Morocco’s status as the apple of the Arab World’s eye. The goalkeeping heroics didn’t stop there as Dominic Livakovic & Emi Martinez proved to be like walls for Croatia & Argentina respectively, & ensured progress for their nations into the semi-finals of the World Cup.

However, the crowning glory belonged to the PSG star Lionel Messi. As the name suggests, it was written in the stars, after taking them to a second possible final after 2014, he and his La Albiceleste side ended up being World Cup winners, & a third World Cup trophy to the South American nation. However, Qatar can count themselves as the true winners in all of these, as a face-off between club team-mate Kylian Mbappe, who ended up with a hattrick! in the final, but still lost to his Messi, will be the dream scenario they’d hoped for, when they won the bid to host the World Cup, back in 2010.

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