Friday, 23 November 2007

Italy seeded for World Cup draw

Holders Italy are confirmed as one of the nine European seeds in the 2010 World Cup draw to be held on Sunday.

The wins against Scotland and the Faroe Islands has seen them remain in 3rd place in the latest FIFA World Rankings - only behind the South American duo of Argentina and Brazil.

This means the Azzurri are amongst the top nine European countries in the draw with Spain, Germany, Czech Republic, France, Portugal, Netherlands, Croatia and Greece.

But the World champions could face Scotland again, or England, as they are both placed in Pot B for the draw.

[Latest FIFA World Rankings]

The ceremony in South Africa will commence with the Asian zone, followed by CONCACAF, Europe and finally Africa. Exempt from the draw are South America, whose qualifiers are already underway in a home-and-away league format, and Oceania, whose preliminary competition began with the South Pacific Games in August.

The 53 European nations will be divided into eight groups of six teams each and one group of five. The nine group winners will directly enter the 2010 World Cup finals, while the eight second-placed sides do battle in play-offs to whittle down the total 13 European entries.

[Pot A] Italy, Spain, Germany, Czech Republic, France, Portugal, Netherlands, Croatia, Greece.
[Pot B] England, Romania, Scotland, Turkey, Bulgaria, Russia, Poland, Sweden, Israel.
[Pot C] Norway, Ukraine, Serbia, Denmark, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Finland, Switzerland, Belgium.
[Pot D] Slovakia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Hungary, Moldova, Wales, Macedonia, Belarus, Lithuania, Cyprus.
[Pot E] Georgia, Albania, Slovenia, Latvia, Iceland, Armenia, Austria, Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan.
[Pot F] Liechtenstein, Estonia, Malta, Luxembourg, Montenegro, Andorra, Faroe Islands, San Marino.

Draw takes place on Sunday 25 November at 1500 (UK Time) in Durban, South Africa.

Source: FIFA

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