The draw for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 intercontinental play-offs will be held in Zurich, Switzerland on November 26, 2021. And the play-offs are scheduled for June 13 and 14 next year. The 22nd World Cup is scheduled to take place between November 21 and December 18, 2022. (More Football News)
While confirming the dates to decide who plays whom, FIFA revealed that the World Cup qualifying format for the intercontinental playoffs will be single-leg games at a neutral venue, instead of two-legged (home-away) fixtures. Two-legged intercontinental playoffs were introduced for the 1986 World Cup.
"The play-offs were originally scheduled to take place in March 2022 but were rescheduled to June 2022 as a result of the unprecedented disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic on the scheduling of FIFA World Cup qualifiers globally," FIFA said in a release.
The playoffs will involve teams from Asia (AFC), South America (CONMEBOL), Oceania (OFC) and the North and Central America and the Caribbean (CONCACAF).
"Following the draw, a dramatic conclusion to the FIFA World Cup 2022 preliminary competition looms with the two intercontinental play-off matches to take place over a single leg on 13 and 14 June 2022," the release added.
Four Asian teams will get a direct berth. One more team can earn a World Cup ticket through the inter-confederation play-off. Hosts Qatar got the automatic qualification.
Four CONMEBOL teams will get a direct berth, with the fifth-place team in the 10-team South American Qualifiers getting a chance through the inter-confederation play-offs, versus a team from another confederation. Brazil and Argentina have already got direct qualifications.
Three CONCACAF teams will get direct World Cup 2022 slots, with one getting a chance via the inter-confederation play-off.
There's one inter-confederation play-off slot available for the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC).
Four years ago, Australia and Peru secured passage to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia via the intercontinental play-offs with wins over Honduras and New Zealand respectively.