2022 World Cup Draw
The draw for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar produced some fairly tasty groups for the opening phase.
Five-time winners Brazil are the favourites to lift the prestigious trophy and should have little difficulty progressing from their section.
Argentina, France, Spain and Belgium also look good bets to make it out of their respective groups.
The World Cup takes place between November 20 and December 18 in Qatar (see your World Cup live streaming options).
Here are the key things you need to know about the World Cup draw.
World Cup Group Stage
The 2022 World Cup begins with 32 teams in eight groups of four:
- Group A: Qatar, Ecuador, Senegal, Netherlands.
- Group B: England, Iran, USA, Wales.
- Group C: Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Poland.
- Group D: France, Australia, Denmark, Tunisia.
- Group E: Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, Japan.
- Group F: Belgium, Canada, Morocco, Croatia.
- Group G: Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Cameroon.
- Group H: Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, South Korea.
World Cup Schedule
The key dates for the 2022 World Cup are as follows.
- November 20 – World Cup begins.
- December 2 – Last group stage fixtures.
- December 3-6 – Round of 16.
- December 9-10 – Quarter-finals.
- December 13-14 – Semi-finals.
- December 17 – Third place play-off.
- December 18 – Final.
The top two teams in each group progress to the round of 16. The competition becomes a straight knockout from this point, with each game played to a finish.
Extra-time and penalties will be used if necessary to determine the winners of games in the round of 16, quarter-finals, semi-finals and final.
World Cup Missing Teams
European champions Italy are the most notable absentees after their play-off defeat by North Macedonia, although they did also miss out on the last World Cup.
Russia will not be in Qatar after being kicked out of the play-offs following their country’s invasion of Ukraine.
Norway failed to qualify, meaning Manchester City goal machine Erling Braut Haaland will have to wait for his major tournament debut.
Mohamed Salah and Egypt will not be there after losing to Senegal on penalties.
Nigeria, Algeria and Ivory Coast are missing from Africa, while South American teams Colombia and Chile also failed to qualify.
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