European World Cup qualifying draw to take place on December 7

The draw for the European section of 2022 World Cup qualifying will take place in Zurich on December 7, world governing body FIFA has announced.

The draw will begin at 5pm UK time and will be a virtual event due to the coronavirus pandemic, with representatives of the various national teams not in attendance.

The 55 teams will be split into five groups of six, and five groups of five. The 10 group winners qualify automatically for the finals in Qatar.

A further three places are available to European teams. The 10 group runners-up and the two best 2020-21 Nations League group winners will then be involved in play-off matches to determine the continent’s final three representatives at the finals.

Seeding will be determined by a country’s world ranking as of November 26, FIFA said.

There will be six pots – five containing 10 teams and one containing five teams.

The 10 highest-ranked teams will be allocated to Pot 1, the next 10 highest to Pot 2 and so on until the last five remaining teams have been allocated to Pot 6.

The qualifiers will be played between March and November 2021.

The finals kick off on November 21, 2022 and will finish on December 18 that year.