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The FIFA World Cup Trophy. Image Credit: UAE Football Association

Next week’s World Cup draw will have some of its seedings skewed.

Fifa outlined the procedure on Tuesday for the draw in Qatar on April 1. Only 29 of the 32 teams in the draw will be known by then because of the situation in Ukraine and Covid-19 pandemic. The three remaining places are set to be decided in June, but it is still unclear when Ukraine will be able to face Scotland for their play-off.

At the draw, the 29 qualified teams will be put into four pots according to their Fifa ranking.

Hosts Qatar are in Pot 1 along with defending champions France, Belgium, Brazil, Argentina and England. Germany, the 2014 World Cup champions, have been ranked outside the top 10 for more than three years and will be in Pot 2.

Fifa resolved the uncertainty around how to seed the three undecided entries by creating place holder spots in Pot 4. The teams affected could land in a tougher World Cup group than their ranking merits simply because they could not complete their games as originally scheduled.

Some of the teams that could be affected include Ukraine, Wales and Colombia. Each of the three, if they were to qualify, would likely have been in Pot 3.

Only 15 teams have so far qualified for the World Cup ahead of more qualifying games in the next week.

Ukraine was scheduled to play at Scotland on Thursday with the winner advancing to play either Wales or Austria on March 29. Ukraine asked for a postponement because it was not possible for home-based players to train and travel due to the conflict.

The pandemic forced the intercontinental play-off round to be delayed. It is now scheduled to be played in Qatar on June 13-14. An Asian team — possibly the UAE — will play a South American team, and the Oceania representative will play a team from the North American region.

The World Cup is scheduled to be played from November 21-December 18 in eight stadiums around the Qatari capital of Doha.