World Cup history-makers Morocco will host minnows Eritrea – 181 locations decrease within the FIFA rankings – after they begin their quest for a spot on the 2026 event.
The primary two of 10 matchdays in Africa are scheduled for November 13-21 and, after Eritrea, the primary semi-finalists from Africa face a doubtlessly difficult go to to bettering Tanzania.
Final December in Qatar, Morocco turned solely the third nation exterior of Europe and South America to achieve the World Cup semi-finals, emulating the USA and South Korea.
They shocked Belgium and held Croatia within the group stage, then eradicated Spain and Portugal in knockout matches earlier than falling to France.
In 16 pre-Qatar World Cup matches spanning 5 tournaments, the north Africans had received solely two and suffered 9 defeats.
Morocco got little likelihood of surviving the primary spherical in Qatar, particularly after a late change of coaches with native Walid Regragui succeeding Bosnian Vahid Halilhodzic.
However Yassine Bounou, Achraf Hakimi, Sofyan Amrabat, Hakim Ziyech and Youssef en-Nesyri impressed their teammates to defy the percentages.
Other than Eritrea and Tanzania, Morocco will face Zambia, Congo Brazzaville and Niger in Group E, with the workforce topping the ultimate standings qualifying for the finals.
Morocco ought to justify being the highest seeds within the mini-league, which stretches from November to October 2025, with Patson Daka-inspired Zambia and Tanzania most likely the most important threats.
Egypt, reigning African champions Senegal, Nigeria, Cameroon, the Ivory Coast, Algeria, Tunisia and Mali are the opposite nations seeded to high closing tables and qualify mechanically.
Like Morocco, they’ll kick off their campaigns at house to the bottom ranked aspect within the group, then go to the workforce ranked fourth.
Seeding was primarily based on the FIFA rankings, and Mali are the one high seeds to not have featured at a World Cup.
Cameroon prepared the ground with eight appearances and have been drawn with Cape Verde, Angola, Libya, Eswatini and Mauritius in Group D.
Nigeria, six-time qualifiers however shock absentees from Qatar after shedding a play-off towards arch rivals Ghana, might discover South Africa and Zimbabwe troublesome Group C rivals.
Ghana are set to pose the most important problem to Mali in Group I, which additionally contains Madagascar, the Central African Republic, the Comoros and Chad.
Democratic Republic of Congo, the primary sub-Saharan qualifiers for the World Cup in 1974 when the nation was known as Zaire, are able to testing Group B favourites Senegal.
Algeria, lacking from Qatar after a play-off loss to Cameroon, will most likely view unpredictable Guinea because the nation most definitely to upset them in Group G.
Competitors for locations on the finals in Canada, Mexico and the USA doesn’t finish with the 9 group winners.
One of the best 4 runners-up go into play-offs and the winners enter a six-team inter-continental event with two World Cup locations up for grabs