Who can England face at the World Cup 2022? The group game pots, seeds and permutations explained prior to the Qatar draw


England will discover their group game opponents at Qatar 2022 when World Cup draw is made this Friday.

Gareth Southgate’s men come in the draw among the favorites have reached semifinals in 2018 and the final of the Euro 2020.

32 teams will be drawn in eight groups of four, with teams divided into four pools based on their ranking in Fifa’s world rankings, which was updated on Thursday.

England’s fifth-placed Fifa rankings mean they are placed in Pot 1, which means they should in theory have a friendly draw.

When is the draw for the WC 2022?

The WC 2022 draw will take place at 17.00 BST Friday the 1st of April. It is held at the Doha Exhibition & Convention Center.

You can watch the draw live on BBC One from 4.45pm to 6pm, with coverage changing to BBC Two until 6.30pm.

The broadcast is hosted by Mark Chapman, with comments from Jonathan Pearce, and you will be able to watch live online via BBC iPlayer here.

Who could England face at the World Cup 2022?

England will discover their group stage opponents in Friday’s World Cup draw (Photo: Reuters)

While England will avoid South American heavyweights like Argentina, Brazil and defending champions France, who are also in Pot 1, there are still some very tough opponents they may face.

Among the toughest teams in Pot 2 are the old rivals Germany, the 2018 conquerors Croatia and the always strong Netherlands.

African champions Senegal are in Pot 3 along with people like Son Heung-mins South Korea, Robert Lewandowski’s Poland and Dusan Vlahovics Serbia.

ONE re-emerged Canada sit in Pot 4 with the African heavyweights Ghana and Cameroon. Scroll down for the full list of teams.

What about Scotland and Wales?

Gareth Bale Wales to face Scotland or Ukraine for a seat at Qatar 2022 (Photo: Reuters)

The end of the play-offs with Scotland, Wales and Ukraine has been delayed until June due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

To overcome this in the draw, the three teams will be treated as one “placeholder” and have been awarded pool four along with the lowest ranked countries.

Are there other places still to be determined?

Yes – the winners of the intercontinental playoffs taking place in June. Peru faces either Australia or the United Arab Emirates, plus Costa Rica (Concacaf) faces New Zealand (OFC).

Are there other lottery rules to be aware of?

Qatar will be placed in Group A from pot one, with the other top seeds assigned to Group B to H in turn. Once placed in a group, they will be assigned a number in the group between one and four.

Qatar will be automatically named A1 and will take part in the tournament’s opening match on 21 November. The pots will be emptied alternately, from pool one all the way down to pool four.

The WC 2022 draw will take place on Friday 1 April (Photo: AFP / Getty Images)

World Cup draws

Pot 1

  • Qatar
  • Brazil
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Argentina
  • England
  • Spain
  • Portugal

Pot 2

  • Mexico
  • Netherlands
  • Denmark
  • Germany
  • Uruguay
  • Switzerland
  • USA
  • Croatia

Pot 3

  • Senegal
  • Iran
  • Japan
  • Morocco
  • Serbia
  • Poland
  • South Korea
  • Tunisia

Pot 4

  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Ecuador
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Ghana
  • Costa Rica / New Zealand
  • UAE / Australia / Peru
  • Wales / Scotland / Ukraine

Can teams from the same continent be drawn together?

Fifa says that whenever possible, teams from the same league will not be drawn together in the group stage, with the exception of Europe, where each group can contain a maximum of two teams from the continent.

Anything else?

The match schedule will not be confirmed until after the group draw has taken place, to allow for appropriate kick-off times for the TV audience in the countries involved or for spectators in Qatar.

When is the World Cup?

The finals begin on November 21 and end on December 18. There will be up to four matches a day in the group stage. Matches in the group stage start at 10.00, 13.00, 16.00 and 19.00 GMT.

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