The real countdown to the 2018 World Cup in Russia begins on Friday as the draw for the tournament is held at a star-studded ceremony in the Kremlin.
President Vladimir Putin is expected to address the footballing world that has descended upon Moscow, in the midst of a freezing Russian winter, to find out who will play who, when and where at the competition next year.
Germany, Brazil and Argentina are all in the first pot along with France, European champions Portugal, Belgium, Poland and the hosts.
But if those nations are certain of avoiding each other, danger lurks in pot two, where the Spanish – the 2010 winners rebuilt into a formidable force by Julen Lopetegui – lie along with England.
"Whatever happens we will accept it gladly and sportingly. I don't waste energy thinking about who I prefer and who HocI don't," said Lopetegui, but Spain and England must be crossing their fingers in the hope of being paired with Poland or the Russians.
FIFA will keep apart sides from the same continent with the exception of Europe, which has 14 representatives to go into eight groups.
Most sections will therefore contain two European nations, raising the prospect of England or Spain meeting Germany or France in heavyweight contests right away.
France and Spain were even drawn together during one practice run of the draw, while alternatively, there is the possibility of England being drawn with Iceland, who humiliated them at Euro 2016.
— #WorldCupDraw 🏆 (@FIFAWorldCup) November 16, 2017
Here's all you need to know about catching all the action from FIFA World Cup 2018 draw live:
When and where will be the FIFA World Cup 2018 draw take place?
The FIFA World Cup 2018 draw will take place at the State Kremlin Palace in Moscow on Friday, 1 December.
Where can I watch the FIFA World Cup 2018 draw live?
The draw will be shown live on SONY TEN 1 SD, SONY TEN 1 HD, SONY TEN 2 SD and SONY TEN 2 HD channels.
What time does the live coverage of the draw start?
The FIFA World Cup 2018 draw will start at 8.30 pm IST.
Where can I watch the draw online?
The live streaming of the FIFA World Cup 2018 draw is on Sony LIV.
With inputs from AFP
Firstpost is now on WhatsApp. For the latest analysis, commentary and news updates, sign up for our WhatsApp services. Just go to Firstpost.com/Whatsapp and hit the Subscribe button.
Updated Date: Dec 01, 2017 21:19:57 IST