In the mag: The ultimate World Cup issue! Exclusive England and Wales interviews, how to actually win a World Cup PLUS Vicente del Bosque, Ian Broudie and Karim Benzema’s incredible year

FourFourTwo World Cup special
(Image credit: Future)

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First a message from our editor, James Andrew:

In 2012, Sepp Blatter was adamant. “The World Cup is played in June and July,” he said. A decade later, here we are on the eve of the first ever winter tournament, stepping into the unknown.

If Blatter’s promise of keeping the World Cup in summer didn’t pan out, how about another from Greg Dyke? In 2013, the FA chairman set two targets. “The first is for the England team to at least reach the semi-finals of Euro 2020, the second is for us to win the World Cup in 2022,” he said. Last summer, the first aim was surpassed – now it’s time for Gareth Southgate’s side to match the Lionesses and win the trophy. Will they? Time will tell.

As for Wales, after successive appearances at the Euros, Rob Page’s side have reached their first World Cup for 64 years and are determined to make their mark. We sit down to speak to the Dragons’ boss – if either he or Southgate wants any last-minute tips, we also have them covered via our seven- step guide to World Cup glory.

Don’t forget to click HERE to sign up to our daily tournament newsletter, bringing you all the latest news, views and reaction from Qatar. Enjoy the tournament.

68-page World Cup supplement

FourFourTwo World Cup 2022 special

(Image credit: Future)

Get profiles of all 32 teams, plus everything you need to know about referees, venues, the best young players, the race for the Golden Boot and more...

England Expects

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: England Expects (Image credit: Future)

Gareth Southgate raised the hopes of a nation with performances at their last two tournaments, and even with recent form denting optimism, Harry Kane & Co tell us they’re still targeting glory in Qatar.

Spirit of ‘58

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Spirit of ‘58 (Image credit: Future)

It has been a long, painful World Cup journey for Wales since their last appearance at the finals, 64 years ago. Now they’re back (to the relief of players past and present) and manager Rob Page tells us how they’re eager it doesn’t end here.

How to Win the World Cup… In Seven Easy Steps

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: How to Win the World Cup… In Seven Easy Steps (Image credit: Future)

For his new book, Chris Evans spoke to a slew of tournament veterans to understand the secrets of achieving global glory - are you reading, Mr. Southgate?

Oh Canada

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Oh Canada (Image credit: Future)

The 2026 co-hosts have reached the World Cup four years early, qualifying for the first time since 1986 - all thanks to a manager from County Durham. Richard Edwards spoke to him.

On Top of the World

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: On Top of the World (Image credit: Future)

After individual accolades and Champions League glory, Karim Benzema has already had the best year of his career. Now France’s comeback king wants the biggest trophy of all in Qatar, the day before his 35th birthday... 

The Qatari Hotbed of Football

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: The Qatari Hotbed of Football (Image credit: Future)

The decision to award the peninsular Arab country a World Cup will forever be disputed, but what football pedigree do the hosts actually have? Via Guardiola, Batistuta and a recent loss against Linfield, FFT investigates.

Between The Lines

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Between The Lines (Image credit: Future)

Harold ‘Toni’ Schumacher was voted the most unpopular person in France after the 1982 World Cup, pushing Adolf Hitler into second place. Forty years on, he tells FFT how one famous incident changed his life.

Vicente Del Bosque answers YOUR questions

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Vicente Del Bosque answers YOUR questions (Image credit: Future)

Why Derby County away was the toughest match he had against an English team, how he healed the Barca-Real rift in the Spanish dressing room, learning he was about to be sacked by Real Madrid in a TV studio and the key to looking after that exceptional moustache.

Sing When You’re Losing

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Sing When You’re Losing (Image credit: Future)

No matter how many defeats San Marino suffer, their fans keep coming back for more. While the globe’s best teams prepared for the World Cup, we headed to the tiny nation to witness a rare chance of victory.

Around The Grounds

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Around The Grounds (Image credit: Future)

Our dedicated section for all things EFL, non-league and Scotland brings you an interview with Pompy gaffer Danny Cowley, Best & Worst finds us in Dundee recalling United’s 1994 Scottish Cup Final v double-treble chasing Rangers. Elsewhere we profile Manchester United’s bouffanted playmaker Hannibal Majbri who’s on loan at Birmingham, we place Reading’s 1991-92 away shirt in Kit Crime jail and big up the players who made it to past World Cups despite operating lower down the leagues.

Upfront

FFT Issue 345

FFT Issue 345: Upfront (Image credit: Future)

Our packed front section kicks off with a huge tribute to The Queen, as a goalkeeper, and Lothar Matthaus telling us the exact moment in his life that he realised he was world class. Ian Broudie explains how terrified he was of injuring his beloved Robbie Fowler when they made the Three Lions video and Australia’s ‘dancing goalkeeper’ Andrew Redmayne reveals Wojciech Szczesny stopped him signing for Arsenal.

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Matthew Ketchell
Deputy Editor

Ketch joined FourFourTwo as Deputy Editor in 2022 having wracked up appearances at Reach PLC as a Northern Football Editor and BBC Match of the Day magazine as their Digital Editor and Senior Writer. During that time he has interviewed the likes of Harry Kane, Sergio Aguero, Gareth Southgate and attended World Cup and Champions League finals. He co-hosts a '90s football podcast called ‘Searching For Shineys’, is a Newcastle United season ticket holder and has an expensive passion for collecting classic football shirts.