World Cup ambassadors Samuel Eto’o, Tim Cahill and Cafu have all backed Qatar to beat England in the knock-out stages of this year’s tournament.
In a series of bizarre – but not wholly surprising – predictions, the former greats have condemned England to be unduly dumped out of the World Cup by their hosts in the round of 16.
This would represent an unprecedented victory for Qatar, a nation that has never qualified for a World Cup previously.
However, to receive support from three such esteemed footballing figures could provide just the morale boost needed for this Qatar national team to exceed all prior expectations.
Reported in the Mail Online, this was just one in a number of strange predictions for the upcoming tournament.
Eto’o has called an all-African final featuring his former side Cameroon.
According to the former Barcelona and Inter Milan forward, Cameroon will finish above Brazil in their group before overcoming Ghana, Belgium and Senegal to set up a final with Morocco, who themselves would have beaten Spain, Portugal and France in the knock-out stages.
Meanwhile, Australian legend Cahill sees a Brazil, Belgium final on December 18th.
He, too, backs Qatar to negotiate their group, eliminating the Dutch in the process, and knocking out Southgate’s men in the round of 16.
He continues Eto’o’s patriotic precedent, backing Australia to end Messi’s dream of lifting the World Cup as they defeat Argentina in the first knock-out stage.
World Cup winner and Brazil legend, Cafu, picked – you guessed it – Brazil to win the World Cup, overcoming France in the final.
Once again, this comes after Qatar swept past England in the round of 16 having eliminated Senegal and Ecuador en route to the knock-out stages before ultimately losing out to France.
The World Cup gets underway on Sunday 20th November when the hosts will be looking to kick-off their march to the last eight with a win over Ecuador.
England, meanwhile, face Iran in their opening game the following day.
Whether they realise that they are doomed for a last 16 exit is yet to be seen.