Backstage News On Mustafa Ali Competing In WWE SmackDown World Cup

WWE announced eight men for their World Cup Tournament, however, one such competitor was different from the initial list of participants making the rounds: Mustafa Ali. That spot looked to be primed and ready for Rey Mysterio as part of the tournament, but things didn't happen that way and now we're getting a better picture of why.


PWInsider now reports that Mysterio suffered a foot injury that has kept him out of the tournament. Ali, who is representing Pakistan, made his way over from "WWE Raw" to be part of the otherwise-"SmackDown"-exclusive tournament. No details were given on the severity or nature of the injury, but there is no return date set at this point. Mysterio last wrestled at a house show on October 30, teaming with AJ Styles and Raquel Rodriquez against The Judgment Day's Rhea Ripley, Finn Balor, and Damian Priest.

In the first round of the tournament, Ali takes on Ricochet — representing the United States — on the November 18 "SmackDown." The winner of the tournament will receive an Intercontinental Championship match against current champion GUNTHER, who has held the title for 157 days and counting.


The World Cup Tournament began on the November 11 "SmackDown." Braun Strowman, also an entrant in the tourney for America, defeated India's Jinder Mahal in the first round. Santos Escobar of Mexico picked up a big main roster win in beating former Intercontinental Champion Shinsuke Nakamura from Japan to move on in the tournament. Along with Ali vs. Ricochet, Butch, representing the United Kingdom, is set for a match with Canada's Sami Zayn to finish up the first round next week.