The countdown to the Qatar 2022 World Cup is already underway. Friday, April 1 is the date established by FIFA to celebrate in Doha (at 13 in Argentina) the draw that will define the eight groups to which the 32 teams that will play the contest will be assigned. Before that day, the last vacancies are defined, with gripping duels on all continents. On Thursday they already shielded their tickets Japan, Saudi Arabia, Uruguay and Ecuador. And there was the shock of removing Italy at the hands of North Macedonia. There are 12 places left to define. Like never before, on the day of the draw three places will still be unresolved, corresponding to playoffs that will be played in June. There will be, in short, 37 countries waiting for the lucky balls.The organization of the Cup has already defined the modality of the procedure to assemble the groups: it will be taken as a reference to order the teams the position in the FIFA ranking which will be published on Thursday 31, after the last Qualifying duels. The latest version of that list has Argentina in fourth place, which guarantees the selection of Lionel Scaloni one of the heads of series. The results with Venezuela (3-0) and Ecuador can make him go up or down somewhere, but never below the positions that give space in the precious pot 1. Although that will prevent him from crossing paths with some of the big favorites in the first phase , does not prevent that among the possible rivals are giants of world football, such as Germany. championship that starts on November 21, with the first game of the local Qatar at the Al Bayt stadium, and ends on December 18, with the final scheduled at the Lusail Stadium, with a capacity for 80,000 people. Never before has a World Cup been played in the last months of the year. The qualified teams will be divided into four goblets, ordered according to their position in the FIFA ranking. The eight groups will be made up of one team from each ciborium, in search of a level that is as uniform as possible. A series of restrictions were established to guarantee geographic diversity: There cannot be more than two European teams together and from the other federations (South America, Central-North America, Africa, Asia and Oceania) there can only be one per group. FIFA clarified that this will occur “as far as possible”, given the complexity of having indefinite balls. Another rule that FIFA added is that all groups must have at least one European, so there will be five that have two UEFA teams. The only thing that is already resolved is that Qatar will be in the group A. At the beginning of the draw, the rest of the seeds will be distributed between groups B and H. Then the other chalices will be drawn: one ball will determine which country goes to each group and another, in which position (from 2 to 4) it is located. within the zone. The latter serves to establish the order of the matches in the first round.Argentina will be one of the eight seeded teams, a privilege he will share with qatar, Belgium, Brazil, France, England and Spain (who no longer depend on the results of their next matches). The last place will be defined after the European repechage. Yes Portugal defeat on Tuesday North Macedonia your e is guaranteed among the privileged. Otherwise, an option to be head of the group is opened to Netherlands. Mexico and the United States (these last two have yet to qualify) would have some distant option if certain results are combined.Joshua Kimmich, during a qualifying match against Romania; Germany will be the great cuckoo of the draw The second chalice will have great powers that could touch Argentina in the draw. If the elimination of Portugalthey will be there Germany, Netherlands, Denmark, Switzerland and Croatia. They will be added, if nothing strange happens, Mexico and United Stateswell positioned in the octagonal of Concacaf. Uruguay It will also be in this lot, although it could not touch Argentina because it is from the same federation.Memphis Depay (right) scores the second goal for the Netherlands in the 2-0 victory against Norway in the World Cup qualifiers, on Tuesday, November 16, 2021. Another of the historic ones that make up the ciborium 2In the third ciborium would be the teams a priori weakest in Europe. Of those already classified, it would fall there Serbianwho sent Portugal from Cristiano Ronaldo to the playoff Also the winner of the playoff between Poland and Sweden. This would increase the possibility that the selection of Leo Messi is paired with two teams from that continent. This lot will almost certainly include those already classified Iran, South Korea and Japan.The last chalice, of those that on paper are the weakest, will include the three balls that still have no owner. It is not a problem in the case of the European play-off, but it poses an additional complication in the other two cases because multiple possibilities must be considered to comply with the rule that teams from the same federation do not repeat. Ecuador (it can’t touch Argentina either) will enter this ciborium, just like Saudi ArabiaThis week the life or death matches that give 14 places for Qatar 2022 began to be played and the play-offs that will resolve the last three vacancies in June will be set up. In Europe, 11 teams were fighting for three places. The format of the repechage is electrifying: three groups of four teams were put together, which face each other in a semifinal/final type format, in a single match. The war in the Ukraine added a dramatic element. FIFA decided to disqualify the selection of Russiawho had to play at home with Poland. Thus, the team Robert Lewandowski goes straight to the final, which will be in Warsaw with Sweden, winner of Czech Republic.Pole Robert Lewandowski pushed for Russia to be eliminated from the competition; his country will play the playoff against the winner of Sweden-Czech RepublicUkraine must play away against Scotland, but due to the invasion suffered by the Eastern European country, FIFA decided to postpone the match to June. The winner will face as a visitor to Welsh, who beat Austria this Thursday.Nothing beats the excitement of the third key. Portugal defeated Turkey with much suffering and North Macedonia struck by eliminating Italy, the champion of the last European Championship. The decisive clash is played in Lisbon on Tuesday.Portugal’s Otavio Monteiro, left, celebrates with Cristiano Ronaldo after scoring the opening goal during the playoff match against TurkeyLuis Vieira – APIn South America they were already through Brazil and Argentina. On Thursday night they stamped the passport Ecuador and Uruguay. It only remains to resolve the classified to the intercontinental playoff: Peru comes one step ahead of Colombia and Chile.The league of the concacaf toHe dropped his first classified on Sunday: Canada. United States and Mexico They are clear favorites for the other two direct places, while the playoff vacancy is disputed between Panama and Costa Rica.The ex-River Rogelio Funes Mori, current player of the Mexican national team, who plays the classification next weekIn Asia the two classifieds of group A were already resolved (Iran and South Korea) and in the early hours of Thursday everything was defined in group B. Japan qualified by beating as a visitor to Australia and that triumph automatically gave the passport to Saudi Arabia, before even playing their match against China. The Australians will go to a final phase that enables the winner to a play-off with the fifth in South America, which will be played in June in Qatar. United Arab Emirates (with Rodolfo Arruabarrena of technician), Iraq and Lebanon They will fight on the last date to become the rival of Australia.The African definition is expected to be captivating. There are five crossings, round trip, with a ticket to Qatar as a prize. They face: Democratic Republic of Congo vs. Morocco (1-1 in the first leg), Mali vs. Tunisia (0-1), Egypt vs. Senegal (1-0), Nigeria vs. Ghana (0-0) and Algeria vs. Cameroon (1-0).The Argentine Héctor Cúper seeks a historic classification with the Democratic Republic of the CongoTwitter / ArchiveTwo intercontinental playoffs will be resolved in June. The fifth from South America competes in a single match in Qatar against the best third in Asia, while the fourth from Concacaf will also face the winner of the Oceania qualifier in the World Cup host country. The clear favorite is New Zealand, who will play a semifinal with Tahiti this Sunday. The winner will face on Wednesday the 30th the one who passes the crossing Papua New Guinea vs. Solomon Islands. The remaining European will leave Welsh, Scotland and Ukraine.