Draw for European World Cup qualifying groups set for December 7

The draw ceremony for the European qualifying groups for the 2022 World Cup will be held at the FIFA headquarters on December 7.

FIFA

Seedings for the draw will be based on the FIFA world rankings published on November 26.   -  Reuters

The European qualifying groups for the 2022 World Cup will be drawn at FIFA headquarters on December 7, FIFA said on Thursday.

A gala ceremony with coaches of the 55 national teams had been set to be held in November until the coronavirus pandemic ruled out that plan.

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"Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and related restrictions, the ceremony will be held as a virtual event without the presence of member associations’ representatives,” said FIFA, which will broadcast and live-stream the draw from 6 p.m. local time (9:30pm IST).

Seedings for the draw are based on the FIFA world rankings published on November 26. Currently, the top-seeded teams would be the traditionally strongest nations plus Denmark. Switzerland and Poland are just outside the top 10.

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Only the 10 group winners will advance directly to the 2022 tournament in Qatar. Three more will qualify through playoffs.

The 10 European group runners-up will be joined by two teams based on placings in the current Nations League program for a 12-team playoff bracket in March 2022. Two rounds of single-leg elimination games will produce the final three qualifiers.

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