Portugal will have to play in the play-offs in the Europe zone in order to hope to qualify for the 2022 World Cup. Cristiano Ronaldo’s partners will have to win two knockout matches next March to join the World Cup in Qatar.
A goal unfairly denied to Cristiano Ronaldo in the first leg in Belgrade then a header from Aleksandar Mitrovic at the last second this Sunday. Portugal’s direct qualification for the 2022 World Cup played very little.
Beaten at home by Serbia (1-2) on the last day of the qualifiers, the Portuguese will therefore have to compete in the play-offs at the end of March.
Unlike previous editions, it will not be a double confrontation but two or three mini-tournaments between four teams. In total, therefore, twelve European teams will try to win one of the last rights to tickets for the World Cup in Qatar: the ten second in pools and the two best winning teams of the Nations League who failed to qualify. .
By finishing second in Group A with 17 points, Fernando Santos’ proteges are sure to finish among the six best second in the qualifiers. Therefore, they should avoid the worst opponents in their Final 4 since the play-offs with the most points will not be able to face each other before the Finals.
12 jump-offs for three qualified
Ahead of the last qualifying matches played on Monday and Tuesday, the majority of Portugal’s potential opponents are already known although one pool in particular remains quite uncertain with three possible rivals: Group G or the Netherlands, Turkey and Norway may still find themselves barragists.
Six play-offs are already known after their second place in the playoffs: Portugal, Russia, Scotland, Sweden, Poland, North Macedonia.
The teams that can still be play-offs: Turkey or Norway or the Netherlands (group A), Italy or Switzerland (group C), Finland or Ukraine (group D), Wales or the Czech Republic (group E).
Play-off teams via the League of Nations: Austria, Wales or the Czech Republic.