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Friday, May 20, 2011

2014 FIFA World Cup seeding (CAF) using the April ranking

As mentioned in this post, it's unclear what the "latest edition" of the FIFA Rankings actually means. At the time of the official announcement the most recent edition was the April release.

This is how the seeding will look using the April 2011 ranking.

Preliminary round

Pot 1: Central African Republic, Congo DR, Sierra Leone, Congo, Rwanda, Kenya, Ethiopia, Zimbabwe, Guinea-Bissau, Madagascar, Namibia, Equatorial Guinea

Pot 2: Chad, Burundi, Swaziland, Liberia, Lesotho, Eritrea, Somalia, Comoros, Mauritius, Djibouti, Seychelles, Sao Tome e Principe

Group stage

Pot 1: Ghana, Côte d'Ivoire, Egypt, Nigeria, South Africa, Algeria, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Senegal, Libya
Pot 2: Gabon, Tunisia, Guinea, Botswana, Mali, Morocco, Malawi, Cape Verde Islands, Benin, Uganda
Pot 3: Zambia, Mozambique, Niger, Gambia, Sudan, Angola, Togo, Tanzania

It remains to be seen how FIFA/CAF will handle the 12 winners from the preliminary round. They could make a pot with 12 teams or choose the pairs involving the top four teams from the first pot of the preliminary round (Central African Republic, Congo DR, Sierra Leone and Congo).

Remember only the group winner goes to the next stage - a play-off against another group winner. Just imagine a group with Ghana, Tunisia, Zambia and a team from the preliminary stage...

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Christian, husband, father x 3, programmer, Romanian. Started the blog in March 2007. Quit in April 2018. You can find me on LinkedIn.


  1. Just imagine a group with Ghana, Tunisia, Zambia and a team from the preliminary stage... <--- sounds like the average UEFA group to me :P Togo is in that pot too so you could have 3 teams that have qualified in the past 12 years in the same group...

    I really don't like that the decisive stage is a play-off, though. This qualifying series seems all too random - only eight matches - which will surely provide some sort of random upset team that will be slaughtered at the World Cup and then used as argument that African football is awful.

  2. Yes, but in an average UEFA group the top 2 (or 1.89 to be more exact) go to the next stage. Here, only 1 goes through.

    The only eight matches problem I think is caused by the African Cup of Nations moving to odd years. They can no longer combine the qualifiers.

  3. They can no longer combine the qualifiers. <--- Big European clubs to blame as usual, in other words. What else is new. ;)

  4. Not really, CAF love to hold the ACN every two years.

    They could have a system like AFC have with 2 x 5 in the final stage, but that's impossible with the ACN every two years. At least this means we'll keep seeing new teams from Africa at the World Cup :)

  5. I'm sure the two highest ranked preliminary round winners will simply be placed in Pot 3 and the rest in the bottom pot.

    This is dumb with a capital D. Unless they seed the draw for the playoffs, we might see something stupid like Ghana and Ivory Coast against each other for a World Cup place.

    But even if they do do that, African qualifying is going to be even more random and chaotic than it was before!

  6. You seem to be assuming the groups will be drawn in July. They may wait until the preliminary stage is over before the groups are drawn, in which case "latest FIFA rankings" could even mean something else again.

  7. I just can't see FIFA missing out on the CAF group stage draw in July.