LIVE: At 3:00 a.m. AEDT on Saturday April 2, the 2022 World Cup draw will take place in Doha, Qatar (7:00 p.m. April 1 local time).
So far, 29 nations have already booked their place in the 32-team tournament, with the Socceroos one of the teams still hoping to qualify in the last chance qualifiers in June.
Socceroos manager Graham Arnold will be present, as will Football Australia chief James Johnson, as Australia discover their potential group stage opponents for the first international tournament.
Follow all the action in our live blog below!
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WHICH TEAMS COULD STILL QUALIFY?
Three places remain to be determined via the playoffs in June in Qatar.
The first sees the winner of an Asian qualifier between the Socceroos and the United Arab Emirates take on fifth-placed South American side Peru.
The second will see New Zealand, representing Oceania, face Costa Rica, fourth in North America.
And finally, the war in Ukraine has delayed the play-offs for the last European place. Scotland and Ukraine will play each other in June, before the winners face Wales a week later. The winner of this confrontation qualifies for the tournament.
But for the purposes of the draw, there will be a placeholder representing each of the three qualifying spots – so Australia will find out their fate before they even qualify.
HOW DOES THE DRAW WORK?
The World Cup draw will be a star-studded affair featuring a host of former players, including Australia’s Tim Cahill.
The 29 qualified teams will be split into four pots based on their FIFA rankings as of March 31, with the exception of host country Qatar, which automatically takes the A1 spot in pot 1.
This means Pot 1 has Qatar plus the other seven highest ranked teams that qualified, Pot 2 has the next eight highest ranked teams, and so on.
Pot four includes the five lowest-ranked qualifiers, along with placeholders for the two winners of the Inter-Confederation playoffs and the remaining winner of the European playoffs.
Pot 1 teams will be drawn first, each placed in their own group, before moving on to Pot 2 and so on. Each group will include one team from each pot.
But here is the crucial factor: Teams from the same confederation will be separated with the exception of Europe which has 13 teams, which means that five of the eight groups will have two European teams.
If a team is removed from the pot in a group where the nation has a geographical restriction, the team is moved to the next group in order – i.e. if a team cannot be placed in the group C, it is assigned to group D instead.
This is also the case with regard to the placeholders for the winners of the Inter-Confederation Qualifiers (Asia vs. South America, North America vs. Oceania) – who must also be kept clear of their confederation representatives. .
WHICH TEAMS ARE IN EACH QUALIFYING POT?
Pot 1: Qatar (hosts), Brazil, Belgium, France, Argentina, England, Spain, Portugal
Pot 2: Mexico, United States, Germany, Denmark, Netherlands, Switzerland, Croatia, Uruguay
Pot 3: Senegal, Iran, Japan, Morocco, Serbia, Poland, South Korea, Tunisia
Pot 4: Canada, Cameroon, Ecuador, Saudi Arabia, Ghana, (European Qualifier Final), (Winner of the Asia-South America qualifiers), (playoff winner North America v Oceania)
WHEN IS THE TOURNAMENT?
The tournament kicks off when hosts Qatar play their opener on November 21 at 9 p.m. (AEDT). For most of the group stage, matches will take place at 9 p.m., midnight, 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. every night.
For the final matches of the group stage and the round of 16, matches will take place at 2am and 6am AEDT.
The World Cup final will take place on December 19 at 2 a.m. AEDT.
Follow all the action in our live blog below. If you don’t see the blog, click here.