The 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia has been released after the Final Draw on 1 December in Moscow’s Kremlin State Palace. The 2018 tournament will take place in 12 stadiums across Russia between 14 June and 15 July.
Hosts Russia will open the event against Saudi Arabia at Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium on 14 June in Group A, while defending champions Germany were drawn into a tough Group F along with Mexico, Sweden and Korea Republic. According to the November FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking, the toughest group is Group C which has France, Australia, Peru and Denmark.
England will begin their tournament against Tunisia on Monday, 18 June (19:00 BST) in Volgograd. Nigeria is drawn in group D alongside Argentina, Iceland and Croatia. While Senegal will play against Poland, Colombia and Japan. The two other African representatives Egypt and Morocco are in groups A and B respectively.
The Final Draw ceremony took place inside the walls of the Kremlin with Gary Lineker hosting and an array of high-profile names on hand to assist with the draw. Legends representing the eight previous World Cup-winning nations and the hosts France’s Laurent Blanc, England’s Gordon Banks, Brazil’s Cafu, Italy’s Fabio Cannavaro, Uruguay’s Diego Forlan, Germany’s Miroslav Klose, Argentina’s Diego Maradona, Spain’s Carles Puyol and Russia’s Nikita Simonyan joined Lineker on stage.
In the audience watching were dignitaries such as FIFA President Gianni Infantino, Lothar Matthaeus, Pele, Samuel Eto’o, Ronaldo and many more.
Here are the World Cup groups in full
Group A: Russia, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Uruguay
Group B: Portugal, Spain, Morocco, Iran
Group C: France, Australia, Peru, Denmark
Group D: Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, Nigeria
Group E: Brazil, Switzerland, Costa Rica, Serbia
Group F: Germany, Sweden, Mexico, South Korea
Group G: Belgium, Panama, Tunisia, England
Group H: Poland, Senegal, Colombia, Japan
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