Take a look at the 32 teams that qualified for the 2018 World Cup, and how they did it.
World Cup Qualified Teams – Russia 2018
Qualification for the 2018 World Cup was several tournaments organised by six football confederations to decide 31 of the 32 places available for the World Cup. Russia, as hosts, did not need to qualify.
The remaining 210 members of FIFA were all eligible to qualify, and for the first time in World Cup history, every single national team registered for the preliminary competition. However, Zimbabwe and Indonesia were later disqualified.
This post will go through the qualification process in each of the football federations, starting with the AFC.
AFC (Asian Football Confederation)
- 12 teams ranked 35-46 play home and away legs, the six winners go into Round Two.
- 40 teams (34 highest ranked with six Round One winners) are divided into eight groups of five teams.
- Eight group winners and the four best group runners up go through to Round Three.
- Twelve teams are put into two groups of six. The top two teams of each group qualify for the World Cup – Iran, South Korea, Japan, Saudi Arabia.
- Two third-placed teams (Australia and Syria) play each other to advance to inter-confederation playoff with CONCACAF fourth placed team.
- Australia win 3-2 on aggregate, going through to play Honduras. They win 3-1 in the second leg to book their place in the tournament.
Related: World Cup TV Schedule
CAF – Confederation of African Football
- 26 teams ranked 28-53 played home and away legs, 13 winners go into Round Two.
- 40 teams (27 highest ranked, with 13 Round One winners) play home and away legs – 20 winners go into Round Three
- 20 teams divided into five groups of four, with group winners qualifying for the World Cup – Tunisia, Nigeria, Morocco, Senegal, Egypt.
CONCACAF – Confederation of North, Central American, and Caribbean Association Football
- 14 teams ranked 22-35 play home and away fixtures – seven winners go into Round Two
- 20 teams (ranked 9-21 and seven Round One winners) play home and away fixtures – ten winners go into Round Three.
- 12 teams (ranked 7-8, and ten Round Two winners) play home and away – six winners go into Round Four.
- 12 teams (ranked 1-6 and six winners from Round Three) are put into three groups of four – top two teams from each go into Round Five.
- Six teams are put into one single group with top three qualifying for the World Cup – Mexico, Costa Rica, Panama.
- (Honduras placed fourth and lost to Australia in inter-confederation playoff)
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CONMEBOL – South American Football Confederation
- Ten teams played home and away matches with the top four teams qualifying – Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Colombia.
- Fifth place Peru went into a inter-confederation playoff with OFC side, New Zealand. They would beat them 2-0 on aggregate.
OFC – Oceania Football Confederation
- New Zealand beat the Solomon Islands 8-3 on aggregate to secure an inter-confederation playoff match against the fifth-placed side from the CONMBEOL conference. This turned out to be Peru, who beat them 2-0 on aggregate.
UEFA – Union of European Football Associations
- 54 teams were put into nine groups of six teams – group winners qualified for the 2018 World Cup – France, Portugal, Germany, Serbia, Poland, England, Spain, Belgium, Iceland.
- Eight best runners up went into a playoff format – the winners of each tie qualified for the World Cup – Switzerland, Croatia, Denmark, Sweden.
World Cup Qualified Teams
Automatically Qualified – Russia (hosts)
OFC – Failed to have a team to qualify.
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