England Seeded for FIFA World Cup 2010 Draw

2nd December 2009 | World Cup Betting category: Football World Cup News
Football World Cup News

It has been made official. England will fill one of the much coveted spots in Pot A of the FIFA World Cup draw, as a seeded team. After the FIFA Executive Committee’s meeting, an announcement was made with regards to the organisational side of the World Cup Draw Pots for the all important occasion on Friday. The favourable seeding means that England can avoid the strongest teams in the competition like Brazil and Spain, but there will be two major names now floating around in Pot 4, which contain the rest of the qualified teams from the UEFA zone.

Although England stand at ninth in the current FIFA World Rankings, they have ridden into a seeded spot because of a strong qualification campaign. The positions of the draw have come from the October FIFA World rankings, instead of November’s which would have changed the whole face of things, due to the extra qualification games France and Portugal had to play. The eight seeded teams which will take their position in Pot 1, and as hosts, South Africa will take up the spot of A1 and the rest of the teams will fill the top spots of the other seven groups.

Pot 1: Argentina, Brazil, England, Germany, Holland, Italy, Spain and South Africa
Pot 2: Asia, Oceania and CONCACAF: Australia, Japan, Korea DPR, Korea Republic, Honduras, Mexico, USA, New Zealand.
Pot 3: Africa: Algeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria, Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay
Pot 4: European teams: Denmark, France, Greece, Portugal, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia and Switzerland

This means that France and Portugal miss out on the seeding, which could all lead to a Group of Death. For the 2010 FIFA World Cup, there could actually be a couple of Groups of Death, which would each contain a seeded team, either France or Portugal, plus one of the strongest teams from Africa or South America. There are some considerations in the draw, namely in keeping geographical teams apart. What this means is that seeded team Argentina, for example, will not be able to draw any of the other South American teams from Pot 3. The only exception to this rule is with the European teams, which a maximum of two can be in each group.

There have been suggestions that the determination of the seeding process would have came down to who FIFA preferred between France and Argentina. France in some ways disgraced themselves after Thierry Henry’s controversial hand-ball inside the Irish penalty area, which lead to the goal which saw get through their qualifying play-off. By settling on October’s FIFA World Rankings, it has not favoured the French at all. If November’s Rankings had been used, France would have squeezed in after picking up extra Ranking points from their play-off games. That would have caused an imbalance though, for the teams which won their groups in Europe, didn’t get the chance to play extra games and pick up more points.

As all of the coaches from the FIFA World Cup qualified teams descend on Cape Town, one famous name will be absent. Argentina’s Diego Maradona, who picked up an eight-week ban from football for an expletive outburst at the media, is not allowed to attend the draw. England’s Fabio Capello has confirmed that he will be there, and David Beckham will also be a part of the ceremony. As much of a threat that there is now of being part of a Group of Death, Capello will be aware that he could just as easily draw Denmark, Algeria and New Zealand. One name they will be hoping to avoid, is that of Portugal and Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese ended both England’s last World Cup appearance and European Champions, beating them twice on penalties.

Just as France and Portugal are dangerously floating around in Pot 2, in Pot 3 there is the dangerous duo of the Ivory Coast and Ghana, which are another pair which seeded teams will want to avoid. While England can be thankful for FIFA’s decision to use the October World Rankings, they will be aware that this is a World Cup in which around every corner lurks potential danger. The date is closing in on which Fabio Capello names his preliminary squad, and while he will have a good idea of who will go, he will now that defeats against the Ukraine and in the friendly against Brazil, made his team drop down to ninth place in the current Rankings.That could have meant that missed out on being seeded, and Capello has already stated that he will only take fully fit players.

The FIFA World Cup kicks off on June 11 and runs for an entire month, culminating in the World Cup Final on July 11. With the seeding all sorted out now, all eyes turn towards the World Cup Draw on Friday. The ceremony will be broadcast live across 200 nations and in the UK, BBC Two will be showing it, starting at 5.45pm.

Some Bookmakers have already jumped on the opportunity that is presenting itself on Friday in Cape Town. There are some limited time bets available with SkyBet, Victor Chandler and William Hill, as to who England will draw from each pot. Naturally, because there is as much chance of drawing Portugal as there is Slovenia from Pot 4, the prices for each team will be pretty much the same. For Pots 2 and 4, all opponents at SkyBet, Victor Chandler and William Hill can be taken at 13/2. The only variant comes in Pot 3, which is the African and South American Group. Here the South American teams are at slightly shorter odds than the African ones. So, for England to draw Paraguay, Chile or Uruguay you can get 13/2 at Victor Chandler, while the African teams can be taken at a best price of 7/1 at both SkyBet and William Hill. While picking a team to bet on will be as much hit and miss as to who comes out of the pot at the FIFA World Cup Draw, hence the long odds, it could be a bit of fun. For something like this, it would probably be best to take some kind of multiple bet like a Trixie, which would be ideal in this situation. Picking three selections will be covered by four bets, and you would need just two of them to come right for a return.


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* All mentioned odds were valid at the time of writing. Betting odds are subject to fluctuations. Please check the current odds with the respective bookmaker!

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