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The Netherlands will face Turkey, Norway and Montenegro in qualifying Group G for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar. The UEFA preliminary draw was held in Zurich on Monday. Latvia and Gibraltar complete Group G with the Netherlands as the top seed. The first fixtures are scheduled in March.
Monday’s mainly virtual draw was conducted by Rafael van der Vaart and Daniele de Rossi. They pitted the Netherlands against the number 32 in the world ranking, Turkey. The other main rival for the Dutch, who are currently placed 14th, are Norway, the number 44. Montenegro and Gibraltar will be new to the Netherlands; the two sides have never played the Netherlands before.
“Norway are a young and strong squad, teeming with talent,” Van der Vaart told Dutch newspaper AD after the draw. He referred specifically to Borussia Dortmund top scorer Erling Braut Haaland, Real Madrid midfielder Martin Ødegaard and AC Milan revelation Jens Hauge. “All in all, a heavy draw,” Van der Vaart concluded.
There are ten qualifying groups and the ten winners winners will proceed directly to the World Cup. The ten runners-up will compete in the play-offs with two Nations League countries for three remaining tickets. All teams within a group will play each other twice in a home-and-away format between March and November 2021.
Featuring 32 countries, the World Cup final tournament will start in Qatar a year later, on 21 November 2022. The World Cup final is scheduled for 18 December 2022.
Related article: The KNVB and the World Cup in Qatar