Tomorrow (December 6th) marks a major milestone along the road to next summer’s World Cup action in Brazil – the 2014 FIFA World Cup Draw!
Teams will not only discover whom they play, but also where their games will take place within Brazil.
The World Cup Draw will select each of the 32 teams who qualified and place them into one of eight groups.
There are eight groups (A-H) with four teams in each group who play a round-robin (each team plays each other). The two teams with the best records from their group will advance to play in a single-elimination knockout round.
How will the World Cup Draw work?
The teams are divided into four pots of eight and one team from each pot is chosen for each group. Pot One is made up of the eight seeded teams, Pot Two contains unseeded teams from South America and Africa, Pot Three unseeded teams from Asia and and North and Central America, and Pot Four unseeded European teams.
As you can see below, there are seven teams in Pot two and nine in Pot Four, so the pre-draw will lump one European team in with the South American and African nations.
Pot One: Brazil, Spain, Germany, Argentina, Colombia, Belgium, Uruguay and Switzerland.
Pot Two: Chile, Ecuador, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Algeria, Nigeria, Cameroon, (plus one team from Pot Four)
Pot Three: Australia, Iran, Japan, South Korea, Costa Rica, Mexico, Honduras, USA
Pot Four: Bosnia, Croatia, England, France, Greece, Italy, Holland, Portugal, Russia (minus one team)
-No more than two European teams can feature in the same group and that only one can come from South America. This means that some of the seeded teams will move into Pot X, to make sure they are kept away from other nations. Then there is the problem of the European nation in Pot Two. The group they appear in will have to have a non-European seeded team so that there is room for a team from Pot Four.
- The draw will also decide where and when the various teams play. The dates, kick-off times and venues of the group matches have already been decided but the teams, with the exception of Brazil, who will be team one in Group A, do not yet know where they will end up.
- It isn’t an easy procedure – “World Cup Draw Procedure Both Confuses and offer a Taste of Friday Event”
Friday’s World Cup Draw Procedure:
- To create an even flow to the draw as Pots 1 to 4 are emptied, we begin by drawing one ball from Pot 4 (containing a European team) and placing it into Pot 2 to achieve an equal balance of eight teams in each pot.
- Pot 1 will then be emptied, beginning with Brazil; teams will be allocated to position 1 of Groups A through H sequentially.
- With the addition of the European team to Pot 2, Pot 2 will contain teams from three different qualification zones. With teams from three zones in the same pot, we increase the risk of inadvertently violating the principle of geographic separation. To ensure we do not mistakenly end up with three European teams in the same group, the following mechanism will be implemented:
- The four seeded South American teams will be placed in an ancillary pot — Pot X;
- One of the four teams will be drawn;
- The group of the South American team that is drawn will determine the group that the European team from Pot 2 will join.
- Pot 2 will then be emptied, beginning with the European ball;
- The European team will join the group of South American team drawn from Pot X;
- The remaining teams will be allocated to Groups A through H sequentially;
- (Note: Groups may be skipped to respect the principle of geographic separation; e.g., Chile and Ecuador may not be drawn into groups with seeded South American teams.)
- Pots 3 and 4 will then be emptied in order.
- The positions within Groups A through H will be drawn for all teams of Pots 2, 3 and 4.
Information via “For World Cup Draw: 32 Divided by 4”
*Whoever gets moved from Pot Four to Pot Two is in for a difficult task. Many teams like England might put themselves into what is referred to as “The Group of Death” which is the most stacked group in the tournament.
When and Where can I watch the World Cup Draw?
The chaos begins on Friday afternoon in the popular holiday resort of Costa do Sauipe in Bahia. The main draw, overseen by FIFA general secretary Jerome Valcke, is scheduled to begin at 1pm local time, or 5pm GMT, after the draw to finalize the make-up of Pot Two. The main event should, fittingly, take about 90 minutes.
2014 FIFA World Cup draw date, time and TV channel: ESPN’s multiplatform coverage of the FIFA World Cup Final Draw, determining the groups for the 32 teams competing in the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, includes FIFA World Cup Draw, a two-hour live program on ESPN2 and WatchESPN on Friday, Dec. 6, beginning at 11:30am ET.
Who am I routing for?
Brazil, Argentina, Colombia, Uruguay, England and the USA!