The World Cup draw takes place on April 1st, and four AFC nations head into the pots, with the potential of one more joining them.
In the next instalment of this series, we’ll look at who can qualified for the competition from the Asian Football Confederation (AFC).
Check out club and national team kits at World Soccer Shop
What’s happened so far?
Qualification from AFC started in June 2019 with 12 nations entering the first round. The first round saw 6 two-legged ties, with the winners of each advancing to the second round, where they were joined by the 34 highest ranking nations from Asia.
The second round saw those 40 split into eight groups of five, with the winner of each group automatically advancing to the third round. Qatar, who won Group E, have already qualified for the World Cup as hosts, so only seven of the group winners moved on to the third round. They were joined by the five best runners-up to complete the 12 teams squabbling over four automatic World Cup berths.
How do things look now?
The third round saw the nations split into two groups of six. At this stage of qualifying, each nation must play their group rivals twice in a traditional round robin league format.
The nations that finish in first and second automatically qualify for the World Cup, while the two nations that finish in third will play each other. The winner of that tie will contest an inter-confederation match against the nation that finishes fifth in the Conmebol region.
Here’s how the final standings look:
|3||United Arab Emirates||10||12|
BetStorm welcome offer: How to get a £10 bet
Qualifying readers* can follow THIS LINK or click the image below to earn a £10 free bet using BetStorm’s sign-up offer.
*18+ only. New customers only. Minimum £10 qualifying bets, stake not returned. Free bet – one-time stake of £10, minimum odds 1.5 stake not returned. 1X wager the winnings. Wager from real balance first. Wager calculated on bonus bets only. Maximum conversion: £200. Valid for 7 days from issue. Withdrawal requests voids all active/ pending bonuses. Eligibility restrictions apply. Further T&Cs apply. BeGambleAware.org
What could happen next?
Automatic qualification has been decided in both groups, with South Korea, Iran, Japan and Saudi Arabia all securing their place at the World Cup.
United Arab Emirates and Australia now meet in the fourth round, a one-legged match scheduled to be played on June 7, 2022.
Whoever wins that will advance to the inter-confederation playoff later in June, where Peru awaits the winner.
- Uefa 2022 World Cup qualifiers: Which European national teams made Qatar?
- Caf 2022 World Cup qualifiers: Which African national teams made Qatar?
- OFC 2022 World Cup qualifiers: Which national teams made Qatar?
- Concacaf 2022 World Cup qualifiers: Which North American national teams made Qatar?
- Conmebol 2022 World Cup qualifiers: Which South American national teams made Qatar?