World Cup 2018 draw: As it happened
The draw for the 2018 World Cup was at 3pm on Friday...
- Draw ceremony starts at 3pm in the Kremlin
- England to discover fate
- Pot 1: Russia, Germany, Brazil, Portugal, Argentina, Belgium, Poland, France
- Pot 2: Spain, Peru, Switzerland, England, Colombia, Mexico, Uruguay, Croatia
- Pot 3: Denmark, Iceland, Costa Rica, Sweden, Tunisia, Egypt, Senegal, Iran
- Pot 4: Serbia, Nigeria, Australia, Japan, Morocco, Panama, South Korea, Saudi Arabia
England get PANAMA! South Korea in against Germany, Mexico and Sweden. So Japan go in with Poland, Senegal and Colombia.
Morocco are drawn against Portugal, Spain and Iran. Australia in against France, Peru and Denmark. Nigeria in with Argentina, Iceland and Croatia.
Suadi Arabia into Group A so they will play Russia in the opening game, with Egypt and Uruguay also in the group.
England get... TUNISIA! Sweden in with Mexico and Germany. So that means Senegal in with Poland and Colombia.
Iran into Group B with Portugal and Spain. Iceland get Argentina and Croatia in Group D, Costa Rica join Brazil and Switzerland in Group E.
Denmark into Group C with France and Peru.
That means Colombia are paired with Poland in Group H. And now the next round of balls starts, with Egypt coming up against Russia and Uruguay.
Mexico are drawn into Group F with Germany.
Switzerland are drawn against Brazil. Big test for Granit Xhaka and pals this summer.
Argentina are drawn with Croatia. That's an interesting one.
Peru are into Group C alongside France. Nice draw for Les Bleus there. They will be happy with that.
Spain get Portugal! An Iberian derby there. Fantastic.
Uruguay are in... Group A with Russia.
Belgium into Group G, and so that means Poland are into Group H.
Brazil are into Group E. Germany into Group F.
Portugal into Group B, France into Group C. Argentina are into Group D.
No surprises as Russia go into Group A. That's just admin we have to get out of the way.
Stirring scenes here from the Kremlin...
Spanish football federations president Juan Luis Larrea has fallen asleep! Speaking for the whole world there, pal.
This is currently happening:
"It's an exciting day for everybody," says Gareth Southgate, trying his hardest not to sound excited at all. Thomas Muller looks up for it though:
Putin and Infantino are wittering on. What do you lot think? Let us know in the comments and let's have some (civilised) devbate. What about the best and worst case for England?
Gareth Southgate is in the house. Probably never thought he'd be sat here at the start of qualifying.
And Vladimir Putin is making his opening speech.
15:00: Here we go!
The ceremony is now due to start in the Kremlin - we are expecting to hear a bit from a certain Vladimir Putin first off, which could be interesting. Then a few lovely montages followed by some balls being drawn out of hats. Exactly as you might expect really.
14:55: Rule check
This bit is fairly simple. There will be one team from each pot (see above) in each group. Russia are in Group A but everything else is up for grabs. No more than one team from each continent can be in each group - or two, if you are talking about Europe. Nice and easy. PS, how many legends can you fit in one photo?
Hello, the World Cup draw is just 10 minutes away! Or, at least, the ceremony is. Gary Lineker will be your host after shedding his long-standing opposition to FIFA just in time for this star-studded gala.
All the fine details are below...
WHERE WILL IT TAKE PLACE?
It will take place in the concert hall at the State Kremlin Palace, Moscow.
Former England striker Gary Lineker and Russian journalist Maria Komandnaya will host the draw, along with legendary assistants Laurent Blanc, Gordon Banks, Cafu, Fabio Cannavaro, Diego Forlan, Diego Maradona, Carles Puyol and Russia’s Nikita Simonyan.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
Forget previous tournament draws, it’s all change in 2017...
The seven-highest ranked teams in the FIFA World rankings as of October 16 join Russia in Pot One, with the remaining teams dropping into three other pots based on their rankings. Pot Two will contain the next eight strongest teams (well, according to FIFA), and so on.
With the exception of UEFA, no teams from the same confederation can be drawn in the same group. A maximum of two European teams can be drawn together.
WHICH TEAM IS IN WHICH POT?
FIFA has now confirmed the make-up of the pots:
WHERE ARE ENGLAND?
Not in Pot One, for obvious reasons.
However, they are bobbing along nicely in Pot Two, along with Spain, Peru, Switzerland, Colombia, Croatia, Mexico and Uruguay. So they avoid one team which inflicted pain on them four years ago...
England defeat to Uruguay (Reuters)Reuters
WHAT IS ENGLAND'S BEST CASE AND WORST CASE SCENARIOS?
Best case: Russia, Iran and Panama.
Worst case: Brazil, Denmark and Nigeria.
WHEN IS THE WORLD CUP?
The World Cup runs from June 14 to July 15 in 2018.