The World Cup 2018 Draw
The draw for World Cup 2018 takes place at the Kremlin in Moscow on December 1st and is expected to be viewed by millions of football fans worldwide. Former England striker Gary Lineker and Russian journalist Maria Komandaya will be hosting the ceremony, which is set to get underway at 3pm GMT.
FIFA released their latest World Rankings following the final qualifiers and these helped determine which of the pots each side was assigned. The 32 teams will be split into four different pots with ‘A’ containing the highest ranked sides, such as world champions Germany, Argentina, a resurgent Brazil, Poland, Belgium and hosts Russia. ‘B’ contains England, Switzerland, Uruguay, Peru, and Spain whilst ‘C’ features Scandinavian duo Denmark and Iceland. ‘D’ is the home of World Cup newcomers Panama, alongside Saudi Arabia and Australia. One side will be drawn from each pot to complete the group. England cannot be drawn alongside Spain; likewise, Germany and Brazil won’t feature in the same group, although the pair could meet further down the line.
There are numerous scenarios which could be played out and Germany will hoping for a straightforward passage through the group stage as they aim to defend their title. Joachim Low’s side could be drawn alongside England, Spain, or Switzerland in their section but will be hoping for Mexico, Peru, or possibly even Croatia instead. Sweden are a side in form and knocked out Italy en-route to qualifying for the competition; they look like the team to avoid from Pot C. Denmark and Iran may also prove tough with preference going to African pair Tunisia and Egypt.
Gareth Southgate’s England will be drawn alongside one of the competition’s powerhouses from Pot A but will be hoping it is hosts Russia and not Argentina or Brazil. Russia drew 1-1 with England during Euro 2016 but finished bottom of the group and look the easiest opposition from that set of elite teams. Poland look to be the second weakest but Germany, Portugal, and France would all make it tough for the Three Lions. There will be no repeat of World Cup 2014 as Italy haven’t qualified and Uruguay start alongside England in Pot B so the two teams won’t meet at this stage. We could see a repeat of Japan/Korea 2002 when England were drawn in the ‘group of death’ alongside Argentina, Sweden, and Nigeria. All four sides are in separate pots ahead of the 2018 staging of the competition so history could realistically repeat itself.
Iceland are another side that England will be hoping to avoid in the draw after they were humbled by them in Nice at Euro 2016.
Two UEFA teams can be drawn in the same group; however, only one side from every other confederation can compete in each section so Brazil will not face Peru, Colombia or Uruguay from Pot B.
There are numerous possibilities and permutations that could transpire at the World Cup 2018 draw, with football fans around the globe keeping their fingers crossed for a kind and favourable outcome. Russia 2018 doesn’t get underway until June 14th but December’s draw is likely to have a significant impact on the eventual outcome of the International tournament.
You can find details of all of the top UK bookmakers here at BettingTop10, including Paddy Power, who make Germany marginal favourites for the World Cup at 5/1 ahead of Brazil who can be backed at 11/2.