2018 FIFA World Cup: Start Date, Format, Details
The 2018 FIFA World Cup is set to commence on June 14, 2018, and after a thrilling round of qualification, the field is set.
The 32-team international tournament will last 32 days, running until July 15, and will feature 64 matches during that span.
This time around traditional soccer powers like Argentina, Brazil, Belgium, Portugal and Spain will all participate, along with defending champion Germany. However, two World Cup regulars, Italy and the United States, failed to qualify and will miss the tournament for the first time since 1958 and 1986 respectively.
The draw for the World Cup will take place on Dec. 1, 2017, at the State Kremlin Palace in Moscow, Russia. Eight teams will be placed in a pot for a total of four, with one team selected from each pot to form a group. The top two teams from each group will qualify for the knockout stage in the tournament.
Each national team’s October 2017 FIFA World Ranking will determine their pot placement. The highest-ranked teams will be placed in Pot 1, the next-highest in Pot 2 and so on. Russia will automatically be placed in Pot 1 as the host nation.