Eagles Face ‘Minnows’ In World Cup Draws
The Super Eagles of Nigeria have been drawn against ‘tiny’ African nations, Djibouti or Swaziland, in the qualifiers for 2018 World Cup holding in Russia.
The draws held yesterday in St Petersburg, Russia, place Nigeria in the Second Round, with the Eagles facing the winner of the game between Djibouti or Swaziland, between November 9-17, 2015 alongside the winners of the first round, plus 27 highest-ranked teams in Africa. All 40 teams paired into 20 ties will played home and away.
The first round of the African qualifiers will be played home and away between October 5-13, 2015.
Fifty-three African countries were in the draw yesterday, with only Zimbabwe missing following their expulsion by Fifa for failing to pay a former coach. Africa maintains its five allocation for Russia 2018, which will be played from June 14 to July 15, 2018.
There will be three rounds of qualifying for the African sides.
Round one features the lowest 26 ranked countries on the continent in Fifa’s July rankings. The winners of those ties advance to round two where they will join the remaining 27 highest-ranked teams.
In the final round, five groups of four teams will meet both home and away and the winner of each group will qualify for Russia 2018.