Vietnam to play five 2022 World Cup qualification games

June 13, 2019 | 06:00 pm PT
Vietnam to play five 2022 World Cup qualification games
Vietnam national football team celebrate the win against Thailand in King's Cup 2019 on June 5, 2019. Photo by VnExpress/Duc Dong.
For the World Cup 2022 Asia zone qualifiers, Vietnam will play five matches from now until the the year-end.

One of the most anticipated football events for Vietnam this year is the 2022 World Cup qualifiers, for which Vietnam is in the second seeding group.

A second place finish in the recently held King’s Cup in Thailand helped Vietnam get the 15th position in Asia on FIFA Rankings, giving it a decided advantage ahead of the qualification rounds.

The World Cup 2022 qualifiers for Asia has four rounds.

Twelve teams, which are ranked 35th to 46th in Asia compete in the first round and play on a two-legged, home and away format. Rank 15 has ushered Vietnam straight into the second round. 

During the second round, the six winners of first round and 34 teams, ranked 1st to 34th in Asia, will be divided into eight groups of five and compete in the same format as the first round.

The group draw of the second round divides 40 teams into five seeding pots based on their FIFA rankings, with the first pot consisting of top eight teams in Asia, the second pot consisting of teams from 9th to 16th positions and so on.

With a slot in the second pot, Vietnam has gained a big advantage because no matter what group they are in, Vietnam will only have to face one out of the eight top-seeded teams in the first pot, which are Iran, Japan, South Korea, Australia, Qatar, UAE, Saudi Arabia and China. The other three teams in the group will have lower rankings than Vietnam.

The eight group winners and the four best group runner-ups of the second round will advance to the third round and they will also automatically qualify for the 2023 Asian Cup held in China.

If Vietnam can make it to the third round, they will be among the last 12 Asian teams, divided to two groups to compete for four direct slots. In the fourth round, third-placed teams from two groups will clash in a two-legged playoff and the winner will advance to the inter-continental playoffs against the fourth placed team of the North and Central American region for the last ticket to World Cup.

The draw for the second round of World Cup 2022 qualification for Asia region will be held July 17 in Qatar.

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