FIFA U-17 World Cup draw: Sides to be ranked according to performances

The draw ceremony will take place on Friday at D. Y. Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai.

The draw ceremony will be held at the DY Patil Stadium.   -  PTI

Twenty-four teams will be drawn from four pots for Friday’s World Cup U-17 draw ceremony at the D. Y. Patil stadium, Navi Mumbai. The sides will be ranked according to their performances at the last five World Cups. FIFA’s general principle is to ensure that no group has more than one team from the same zone.

India, already assigned to position A1, will play all Group A games in New Delhi.

POT 1: India, Mexico, Brazil, Germany, Mali, France.

POT 2: Spain, Japan, New Zealand, England, Iran, USA.

POT 3: Costa Rica, DPR Korea, Honduras, Iraq, Turkey, Colombia.

POT 4: Chile, Paraguay, Ghana, Guinea, Niger, New Caledonia

Asian nations in the fray:

Saudi Arabia: Asia’s only previous champion, won the U-17 World Cup 1989 (called FIFA U-16 World Cup then), defeating host Scotland 5-4 on penalty kicks in the final held at Scotland. Portugal and Bahrain grabbed third and fourth places.

Saudi goalkeeper Moahmmed Al-Deayea from the winning squad went on to become one of Asia’s best custodians in the senior ranks. Qatar and Oman - two other Asian nations - finished third in 1991 and 1995.

Iran: Fourth appearance at this level, previously in 2001, 2009 and 2013. The Iranians twice advanced beyond the Group Stage.

Iraq: Beat regional rival Iran on penalties to claim the 2016 AFC U-16 Championship.

Japan: Eighth appearance at the tournament. Japan has twice reached quarterfinals (1993 and 2011).

DPR Korea: Progressed to knockouts of U-17 World Cup on three previous occasions 2005, 2007 and 2015.