The World Cup Draw: Two more days
The World Cup draw is getting closer and closer. The 32 World Cup competitors are known, now they only have to be divided into 8 groups of 4. To do this, 4 pots of 8 have to be made so each group consists of one team from each pot. The draw will be on Friday, but now we know which team is in which pot.
They first pot was already known, that’s the so called “seeded teams” pot, consisting of Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Spain, Germany, Belgium, Uruguay and Switzerland.
The second pot will be an Africa/South America pot consisting of Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Nigeria, Algeria, Ghana, Ecuador and Chile. That’s only seven teams?! Yeah, that’s only seven teams. This pot will be filled with one team from Europe. There will be a pre-draw to determine which European nation will go into this pot.
The third pot is an Asia/North America pot: Japan, Australia, South Korea, Iran, Mexico, the United States, Costa Rica and Honduras.
And finally the European pot: the Netherlands, Italy, Portugal, Croatia, Russia, England, Greece, Bosnia and France, and as mentioned earlier, one of these teams will go to pot 2.
This doesn’t mean that there could be a group consisting of three European teams. FIFA wants separation of teams from the same confederation and therefor the European team from pot 2 will be assigned to a group with a South American team from pot 1. South American teams from pot 2 will be placed in a group that has a European team from pot 1.
Draw procedures are always very confusing, but this is basically how it goes.
I really can’t wait for the draw. I’m curious to see what will be the “group of death” and which top team will have a walk in the park during the group stage.
Based on the FIFA ranking, the strongest group possible would be a group with Spain, Portugal, United States and Chile. The weakest group possible would be Belgium with Russia, Cameroon and Australia. Of course, this may change after the pre-draw on Friday.
If a strong European team is relocated to pot 2, let’s say Portugal, a possible draw-result could be a group with Argentina, Italy, Portugal and, for example, Mexico. Whoo! Now that would be awesome, for neutral spectators of course. If the Netherlands (i’m from Amsterdam) end up in a group with Argentina, Portugal and Mexico, i will throw my coffee at the TV. The Netherlands ended up in the group of death recently at Euro 2012, together with Germany, Portugal and Denmark. Euro 2012 wasn’t a success for the Netherlands and i don’t want to talk about it.
If you want to do the draw as well, here is a nice little game. It let’s you simulate the draw. I did it twice and got scared by the results, so i’m just going to wait for Friday.