Your FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 Qualifiers Guide is here.
As European Qualifiers are underway starting March 24, we look at what to expect in a condensed calendar. For the next 12 months European nations will compete to win their spot to Qatar next year. Alongside South American qualifiers that started earlier, the winner of the next edition is highly likely to be found on the American continent or in Europe. Defending World champions France will look to repeat and reach the final for the 4th time over the last 7 World Cup tournaments (1998, 2006, 2018)
We take a look at the 90SOCCER Qualifiers Power Rankings
South America zone
4 nations will come out directly of the CONMEBOL region with fifth place being sent to an intercontinental playoff round against a nation from the CONCACAF region. Qualifiers started in October of 2020. So far just 4 matches have been played out of 18 matches total for each nation. Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay are the only three undefeated nations this far. They occupy the top 4 spots alongside Ecuador.
On March 6th 2021, FIFA announced that the March 2021 matches were postponed due to travel and quarantine restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. It is yet to be known when the South American qualifiers will resume as countries still deal with high pandemic rates
A total of 10 groups with each between 5 or 6 nations has been determined for the World Cup Qatar qualifiers, zone Europe without big confrontations between nations. The ten group winners qualify for the World Cup. The 10 runners-up will play in the playoffs to compete for another 3 spots.
World Champions France start their campaign against Ukraine and will also meet Finland, Bosnia-Herzegovina and Kazakhstan. A group the French should top without too much difficulties.
Runners-up Croatia was drawn in a group with Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Cyprus and Malta. It will be interesting to see who will win the group out of Russia and Croatia.
Euro 2016 champions Portugal was drawn with Serbia and Ireland. It would surely be the last Cristiano Ronaldo’s World Cup at age 36.
2014 World Cup champions Germany will notably play Romania and Iceland. 2010 World Cup champions Spain is to face Sweden and Greece. 2006 World Cup champions Italy will meet with Switzerland. England is in the same group as Poland and Belgium with Wales and Czech Republic.