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World Cup Host Russia Halted by Team Melli in Friendly

12 October, 2017, 01:02 | Author: Kristen Ingram
  • New Zealand bagged OFC¿s play-off place and Burnley's Chris Wood has starred for them

The national team will be making a fifth World Cup appearance next year.

France will book their ticket with three points against Belarus, while the Netherlands, finalists in 2010 and semi-finalists four years ago, see their hopes hanging by a thread as they bid to avoid failing to qualify for successive major tournaments for the first time since 1986, having also missed out on Euro 2016.

The story of the night, however, was Panama's historic victory over Costa Rica which sealed their place in a first-ever World Cup at the expense of the United States, who lost 2-1 to Trinidad and Tobago. Thus, Russian football players will not play against any of the listed teams at the group stage.

Uruguay and Colombia also booked their passage through to Russian Federation but Chile's defeat to Brazil meant they missed out on qualification for their third consecutive World Cup.

Australia and Syria - the third-placed finishers in the two Asian final-round qualifying groups - play the second leg of their play-off on Tuesday with the score 1-1 after the first leg. The World Cup final will be played in Moscow's Luzhniki Stadium on 15 July, 2018.

Switzerland were narrowly beaten to top spot in their group in the final game and will be joined by Italy, Denmark, Croatia, Sweden, Northern Ireland, Greece and Republic of Ireland as the remaining Europeans are whittled down from eight to four.

New Zealand face a play-off next month against the team finishing fifth in South American qualifying, with the victor of that two-legged tie qualifying for the finals.

A number of expectant countries saw their World Cup dreams come to an end this week as their final qualifying results ensured they fell short of even a playoff opportunity.

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