The organizing country is the first classified. Of the 31 remaining spots, 29 are awarded directly and two are resolved in playoffs.
In the Qualifiers on the way to the Qatar 2022 World Cup, the classification of 31 selected must be defined in the six regions in which FIFA divides the planetary map, and that will be added to the host country of the World Cup, the only one that has guaranteed passage regardless of sporting merit.
211 teams take part in the competition of the previous stage of the World Cup, so that only 15 percent of those who start to play the Qualifiers will reach the goal of participating in the final phase, which in this case will be played on an exceptional date, from November 21 to December 18, 2022, to avoid the summer season in the Middle East and mitigate the effects of high temperatures in that region of Asia.
Of those 31 places, 29 will be delivered directly and the remaining two will be resolved in the same number of playoffs, with crosses that FIFA will define in due course and that will feature a team from Conmebol, one from Concacaf, one from Asia and one from Oceania.
Europe is the continent with the largest number of participating countries, 55 from UEFA, and the one with the largest number of places for the World Cup, since there will be 13 teams from the Old World that will be in Qatar.
South America, with ten participating teams, is the region with the least number of competitors and the one with the highest proportionSince it has four direct quotas and it can be five if the team that finishes fifth in the positions wins the playoff against a rival from another continent that FIFA will define in due course.
While in Asia and Africa the competition already began in 2019 and had to be interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, South America is the third region to start its World Cup path, and the remaining three will do so from 2021: UEFA (Europe), the Concacaf (North and Central America, and the Caribbean) and Oceania.
In the distribution made by FIFA in this scheme of 32 selected participants in the final phase of the World Cup, Europe has 13 places, Africa with 5, Conmebol and Asia with 4.5, Concacaf with 3.5 and Oceania with 0.5.
In the Asian Football Confederation Playoffs (AFC, its acronym in English) initially 46 selected. It was the first region to start the qualifying stage for the World Cup, on June 6, 2019.
The contest is divided into three rounds. In the first, six teams advanced to the second stage by prevailing in their heads-up, with round-trip matches: Mongolia (eliminated Brunei), Sri Lanka (to Macao), Guam (to Bhutan), Bangladesh (to Laos) ), Cambodia (to Pakistan) and Malaysia (to East Timor).
The second round brings together 40 teams divided into eight groups of five, who play everyone against everyone and in round-trip matches. This stage began to be played in September 2019, was interrupted by the coronavirus pandemic and is scheduled to resume in January 2021.
In it, the eight winners of each zone and the four best seconds will pass to the third stage. Should Qatar finish first or second in their group, the fifth best in the second place table, they will take their place in the third qualifying round for the World Cup.
The qualifying groups for the Asian qualifiers are composed as follows:
The 12 selected classifieds, in the third round, will be divided into two groups of six each. They all play again, back and forth.
The top two from each zone will get a place in the World Cup. And the two third parties will play a final to define the qualifier for the playoffs against a team from another continent.
The Playoffs in the African Football Confederation (CAF), which has 54 participating teams, began to be played in September 2019, with the dispute of the first stage in which the 28 worst ranked teams in the FIFA ranking intervened as of July of that year.
In hand-to-hand duels defined by draw, 14 teams were classified for the second stage: Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Namibia, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Malawi, Togo, Sudan, Rwanda, Tanzania, Equatorial Guinea, Ethiopia, Liberia and Djibouti.