World Cup pot placements have been revealed and the announcement is bad news for the United States, says a Dec. 3 report from USA Today. The World Cup pot was announced Tuesday by FIFA for the upcoming World Cup draw. The Associated Press reports that each of the eight first-round groups will include one nation from each pot.
The list below details the World Cup pot placements.
Pot 1 (seeds) - Argentina, Belgium, Brazil, Colombia, Germany, Spain, Switzerland, Uruguay
Pot 2 (South America, Africa) - Chile, Ecuador; Algeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Nigeria
Pot 3 (CONCACAF, Asia) - Costa Rica, Honduras, Mexico, United States; Australia, Iran, Japan, South Korea
Pot 4 (non-seeded Europe) - Bosnia-Herzegovina, Croatia, England, France, Greece, Italy, Netherlands, Portugal, Russia
The World Cup pot draw itself is slated to take place this Friday and it will place the 32 teams into eight groups.
USA today explains that the World Cup pot puts the U.S. team in a bad position. An excerpt from the report reads:
"Even if the USA gets lucky and draws one of the weaker South American teams in Pot 1 that isn’t attached to a European team in the pre-draw, Pot 2 contains few favorable matchups (Chile is No. 12 in the world, Nigeria is the current African champion, the Ivory Coast is loaded with European-based talent, and Ghana has eliminated the USA in each of the last two World Cups). Put simply, there’s a much higher change of a bad draw for the Americans than there is for an easy draw."
Business Insider also says that the World Cup pot placement is not good for the U.S. Tony Manfred explained this by saying:
"The power teams in Pot 1 don't have to play other Pot 1 teams, and European teams in Pot 4 don't have to play most other European qualifiers, the U.S. has to worry about all of the above.
Only two teams from each group make it to the knockout rounds. Since the U.S. is in an unfavorable pot, odds are that there will be two teams in their group that are ranked higher than them — and are thus favored to advance.
They could get drawn with Brazil and the Netherlands, or Argentina and Italy, and it'd be incredibly difficult to move on from the first round."
The World Cup pot placements mean that the strong teams in Pot 3 are in an unfavorable pot position because it is considered the weakest pot in the draw. Therefore, the U.S., Mexico and Japan will not have the chance to get Honduras, Costa Rica or Iran in their group, making their groups much more challenging.
The group draw for the FIFA 2014 World Cup will be held next Friday in Costa Do Sauipe, and it will be televised in 193 countries, FIFA said Monday.