FIFA 2010 World Cup Draw Seeding

26th November 2009 | World Cup Betting category: Football World Cup News
Football World Cup News

The important factor for the World Cup 2010 draw, which takes place on December 4th in Johannesberg, is the seeding of the World’s best teams. This is done, as in any competition, to separate out the best teams across the groups, to try and add some kind of parity to the tournament. The process of seeding teams is not such a straight forward process as one may think, as there are the specific parts to the formula, which determines how FIFA will place seeding on teams. While the seeding for the World Cup 2010 draw will take no bearing from how well teams did during qualification (for example Argentina will likely be a high seeded team, despite having a tough qualification, whereas England’s much stronger qualification will still only put them at around the same level as the South Americans in FIFA Rankings), their performances will have counted for something. The games played, the results and levels of opposition, will have helped with nations’ FIFA World Rankings, which plays into the formula for becoming a seeded team for South Africa 2010.

There is a general formula which has been used in the past for World Cup seeding, and it comes down to two parts. Firstly, the previous World Cup performances (which, for the 2006 World Cup, only 2 World Cup appearances were taken, whereas before it was from the previous three World Cups) is calculated. Points are awarded to nations depending on how far a particular team progressed through the tournament. So the two teams who didn’t make it out of the group stages would only get 8 points for finishing bottom, and 9 for finishing in third. The sixteen teams who went through to the knockouts are organised into 16 places, and then all would all get points counting down from 32 to the tournament winner, to 17 points for the lowest of the 16 teams who qualified for the knockout stage.

The second part to the formula is based on the all important FIFA Rankings (which are listed below). Parts one and two get added together to give the World Cup 2010 draw its seedings. So it basically boils down to: World Cup performance (be it 2 or 3 years) + FIFA Ranking being the basic formula which has been used before. It is not until December 2nd of this year, will the world know exactly how FIFA are going to formulate the specifics. They have to decided whether to include November’s matches or stop the FIFA Rankings at the end of October. Why? Because some teams, like those involved in European play-offs, got to play more games, which would affect their ranking, and give them unfair advantage over others.

October FIFA World Rankings (bearing in mind points from one month to the next can be + or -):
1 Brazil 1632
2 Spain 1629
3 Netherlands 1340
4 Italy 1215
5 Germany 1161
6 Argentina 1103
7 England 1101
8 Croatia 1087

Current (November) FIFA Rankings:
1 Spain 1622
2 Brazil 1592
3 Netherlands 1279
4 Italy 1215
5 Portugal 1181
6 Germany 1170
7 France 1122
8 Argentina 1085

Looking at the listing, you can see the disparity, as England drop out and France come in, as do Portugal over Croatia, this because of France and Portugal’s extra success in the European zone play-offs. Holland have suffered the biggest loss of points because of not playing competitive games, as they were in a smaller qualifying group. The two teams which most of this scenario will revolve around will be France, Portugal and Argentina. Is there a favourite among FIFA? The October rankings favour the South Americans, and the November ones favour France and Portugal heavily. It could make all the difference as to which of those scrape into the seeding for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. If, for example, it is the October rankings FIFA go by, then its Portugal who run the gauntlet of possibly facing Spain, Brazil or any of the other seeded teams.

Regardless, with all that in mind, looking at the October rankings (which would make things a lot easier, and is probably what FIFA will go with), we can postulate how the World Cup 2010 draw may look. Listed below are the top seven teams, based on the previous formula for the 2006 World Cup, and using the October Rankings (the eighth seeded team position will be filled by the hosts South Africa, who will take their place in Group A):

1 Brazil 30 29 59
2 Germany 29 30 59
3 Italy 29 27 56
4 Spain 30 25 56
5 England 25 36 51
6 Argentina 28 21 49
7 France 25 23 48

WCP= World Cup Performance
FIFA =FIFA world Rankings
All points rounded to nearest whole number

What does this mean in terms of how the Pots for the World Cup draw would be determined?
Again going on past ventures, there will be four specific pots from which the teams for the groups for the World Cup 2010 draw are organised. Each group will consist of one team from each pot, and could look something like this:

Pot 1 (the eight seeded teams as above) Brazil, Germany, Italy, Spain, England, Argentina, France, South Africa
Pot 2 (the rest of the nations from UEFA) Holland, Portugal, Serbia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Greece, Switzerland, Denmark
Pot 3 (Asia, Oceanic and CONCACAF zones) USA, Mexico, Honduras, New Zealand, Australia, North Korea, South Korea, Japan
Pot 4 (Africa and South American Zones) Chile, Paraguay, Uruguay, Algeria, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Ghana, Nigeria

Portugal, who would be 8th in the seeding list, would be the unlucky team to miss out, because there could end up a Super Group for example, of Brazil, Portugal, Mexico, Ivory Coast. In the interest of World Cup science, we headed over to and came up with one possible outcome for the FIFA 2010 World Cup Draw, based on the above information.

Group A: South Africa, Slovenia, New Zealand, Chile
Group B: Italy, Switzerland, Australia, Ivory Coast
Group C: England, Portugal, Mexico, Algeria
Group D: France, Denmark, Honduras, Uruguay
Group E: Germany, Holland, USA, Cameroon
Group F: Brazil, Serbia, North Korea, Nigeria
Group G: Argentina, Slovakia, South Korea, Paraguay
Group H: Spain, Greece, Japan, Ghana

The World will have to wait and see just how the seeding and the draw works out, and it is just around the corner. In just over a week, the thrity-two participating nations will know who they are facing.  The managers will start in earnest planning on how to cope with the styles of their opponents, and players will have only a matter of month to play their way into those much coveted World Cup Squads.

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