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FIFA World Cup qualifying draw

The 52 European entrants were drawn into nine groups, seven of six and two of five, seeded according to their FIFA world ranking.
 

FIFA World Cup qualifying draw

The 52 European entrants were drawn into nine groups, seven of six and two of five, seeded according to their FIFA world ranking.

17.00CET, 25 July 2015, Konstantinovsky Palace, St Petersburg

The draw
Group A
Netherlands
France
Sweden
Bulgaria
Belarus
Luxembourg

Russia hope for World Cup legacy

Group B
Portugal
Switzerland
Hungary
Faroe Islands
Latvia
Andorra

Group C
Germany
Czech Republic
Northern Ireland
Norway
Azerbaijan
San Marino

Watch Wales top EURO qualifying Group B

Group D
Wales
Austria
Serbia
Republic of Ireland
Moldova
Georgia

Group E
Romania
Denmark
Poland
Montenegro
Armenia
Kazakhstan

Watch England win thriller in Slovenia

Group F
England
Slovakia
Scotland
Slovenia
Lithuania
Malta

Group G
Spain
Italy
Albania
Israel
FYR Macedonia
Liechtenstein

Watch Iceland top EURO qualifying Group A

Group H
Belgium
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Greece
Estonia
Cyprus

Group I
Croatia
Iceland
Ukraine
Turkey
Finland

• All groups contain one team from each of the top five seeding pots. Each of the seven sides in the sixth pot were allocated to a six-team group.

• Due to the centralisation of media rights for European Qualifiers, England, France, Germany, Italy, Spain and the Netherlands were all drawn into six-team groups.

• The nine group winners advance directly to the final tournament.

• The eight runners-up with the best record against the teams first, third, fourth and fifth in their groups proceed to play-offs to decide the remaining four European berths.

Continental allocations
Africa: 5
Asia: 4.5
Europe: 13
North, Central America and Caribbean: 3.5
Oceania: 0.5
South America: 4.5
Hosts: 1 (Russia)

Dates
Matchday 1: 4–6 September 2016
Matchday 2: 6–8 October 2016
Matchday 3: 9–11 October 2016
Matchday 4: 11–13 November 2016
Matchday 5: 24–26 March 2017
Matchday 6: 9–11 June 2017
Matchday 7: 31 August–2 September 2017
Matchday 8: 3–5 September 2017
Matchday 9: 5–7 October 2017
Matchday 10: 8–10 October 2017
Play-off first leg: 9–11 November 2017
Play-off second leg: 12–14 November 2017
Final tournament (Russia): 14 June–15 July 2018

http://www.uefa.com/worldcup/draws/index.html#fifa+world+cup+qualifying+draw

Road to the final

European qualifying for the 2018 FIFA World Cup consists of a group stage and a play-off round, providing 13 UEFA member nations for the 32-team final tournament in Russia (who qualify as by right).

Qualifying group stage
Matches take place between 4 September 2016 and 10 October 2017 with seven groups of six teams and two of five. The nine group winners qualify directly for the finals and the eight runners-up with the best record against the teams finishing first, third, fourth and fifth in their section go into the play-offs.

Play-offs
The eight teams are drawn into four pairings for two-legged ties played from 9 abnd 14 November 2017. If scores are level after the second leg the team with the most away goals qualified, whether after 90 minutes or extra time. The four winners qualify for the finals.

Final tournament
The allocation for other confederations is: Asian Football Confederation (AFC) 4.5, Confederation of African Football (CAF) 5.0, Confederation of North, Central American and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) 3.5, South American Football Confederation (CONMEBOL) 4.5, Oceania Football Confederation (OFC) 0.5, and one slot for the hosts Russia. The teams are drawn into eight groups of four with the top two going into the knockout phase.

Further details, including the criteria for separating teams that finish level on points in a group, or after extra time in a match, can be found in the
official competition regulations.

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