World Cup Qualifying: USMNT, Canada, Mexico Odds; Qatar 2022 Format

Written By Marco Cerino on February 23, 2022 - Last Updated on March 22, 2022
usmnt world cup qualifying

One month remains in USMNT World Cup qualifying, with three final matches scheduled for the end of March. The big names in CONCACAF look poised to make it to Qatar. Three games remain for each side in the Octagonal for the confederation combining North America, Central America, and Caribbean nations.

From the final eight, three teams will go through to the 32 teams playing in the 2022 World Cup, while the fourth-place squad will enter a play-in round. Click on the odds below to bet now.

Mexico vs. USA – March 24, 10 p.m. ET

Stadium: Estadio Azteca

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USMNT World Cup Qualifying Standings

Although no one has punched a ticket to Qatar, five teams have emerged as contenders for the four spots.

 GPPointsWinDrawLossGDGoals ForGoals Against
United States1121632+9167
Costa Rica1116443+187
El Salvador119236-7613

World Cup Futures From CONCACAF Contenders

Odds To Win 2022 World Cup

United States

Remaining USMNT World Cup qualifying matches:

  • March 24: vs. Mexico
  • March 27: vs. Panama
  • March 30: vs. Costa Rica

The United States are second in the group on 21 points. They’ve got some work to do to qualify, but it’s still within their grasp. A four-point cushion means beating Panama in Orlando on the 27th after a draw (or win) against Mexico will likely guarantee their spot in Qatar. This will prevent any last-game disaster scenarios like we saw in 2017.

They’re averaging very close to their 1.46 Expected Goals average with 16 goals for, while the Expected Goals Allowed average of 0.74 is slightly higher than their seven goals conceded in 11 games (three goals were to Canada). If they can translate that Expected Goals Differential advantage, even with Weston McKennie’s absence after the injury with Juventus, they’ll be in good shape.

Could Gio Reyna’s spark more offense? This is the most talented side the U.S. has ever run out. However, they’re still working on creating that cohesive on-field product.

This is a very young group, with no proven striker in the 4-3-3. Christian Pulisic might be a bigger concern but his goal in Champions League against Lille was awfully nice.

While they have struggled against more physical sides in CONCACAF, they might do better against higher-flight teams that won’t just sit back and let the U.S. dominate possession. The game at El Azteca on the 24th could do a lot to tell how they’ll fare in the fall. The Americans countered well in Ohio in November in the 2-0 win in USMNT World Cup qualifying.


Remaining World Cup qualifying matches:

  • March 24: vs. Costa Rica
  • March 27: vs. Jamaica
  • March 30: vs. Panama

Canada top the table with 25 points. They’re guaranteed to finish no worse than fourth and need only one point earned (or one point dropped by Panama) to qualify for the World Cup. They have been the most complete team in the Octagonal, have yet to lose, and will be make whatever group they get the Group of Death.

Led by Alphonso Davies and Jonathan David, they are a team that plays with speed, athleticism, and has proven capable of neutralizing the top offenses in the group. The biggest question will be how they face elite sides. With some players in Europe on their roster, they can acclimate but the overall quality will be stronger in the group stage. Their ranking will put them in Pot 3 or 4 for the draw, pending final rankings.


Remaining World Cup qualifying matches:

  • March 24: vs. USA
  • March 27: vs. Honduras
  • March 30: vs. El Salvador

Mexico is behind the US on goal differential but also has 21 points. They also control their own destiny and will play the US, last-place El Salvador, and Honduras in this last trio of matches. Two of those games are at the imposing Aztec Stadium, which will welcome over 100,000 fans again and give El Tri a boost.

Mexico is missing – something. Three losses on American soil in 2021 showed some vulnerability to the powerhouse. Coupled with a loss in the snow in Edmonton in November, there is concern among the team’s backers. Their 1.97 xG (expected goals) average leads the region but they’ve only scored 14 times in 11 games, putting the team about eight goals behind that expected number.

Will they turn it around? Tata Marino may not be in charge come the fall after his losses to the northern neighbors. On the pitch, the team looks old, slow, lacking the quality of opponents featuring European-based talent. While they should still make Pot 2 and get a favorable World Cup draw, they likely won’t scare sides like in previous years.

Other CONCACAF Teams

Panama sit at fourth on 17 points, one ahead of Costa Rica. The two teams are currently level on goal-differential, the first tiebreaker, at +1. Panama will host Honduras and Canada with that trip to the US in between.

The offense has been working for Panama, as they have 14 goals in 11 games. However, that trails their xG of 1.6 per game, which would be over 17 goals. They’ve allowed 13 goals, well ahead of the xGA of .91.

Panama has produced goals despite a real headliner on offense. However, they will need to tighten up the backend or they may not make it to the intercontinental playoff.

Costa Rica is currently on the outside of the group, in fifth place on 16 points. They managed to stay alive in the most recent window with two wins and a draw. It helped immensely that they pulled a 1-0 win at home against Panama (clinching my 3-leg matchday parlay as well, muchas gracias).

The .79 xG is close to the team’s average of eight goals scored in the 11 games. However, they’ve conceded just seven, compared to a 1.44 xGA (which is close to 16 goals against).

The difference? The ageless goalkeeper Kaylor Nevas, who will possibly retire as CONCACAF’s greatest netminder keeping the team in games. He did a lot to get the team to Russia and will certainly have a lot to say about getting to Qatar. They’ve got Canada and the US coming to San Jose. Both those away legs were losses (3-1 and 2-1, respectively). Canada enters with a win/tie-and-in scenario. If the US clinches their spot before the finale, could that bode well for Los Ticos?

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