2026 WORLD CUP FOOTBALL

FIFA™ | United States of America, Canada & Mexico

2026 World Cup | Groups AFC

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There are several qualifying rounds and groups in the Asian qualifying zone, AFC. Between 2023 to 2025 (subject to changes), 46 countries in Asia will compete for a total of 8 to 9 World Cup tickets to be awarded (out of 48). These are the 46 countries that belong to the AFC zone and are members of FIFA. They will compete for the 2026 world title in North America. In alphabetical order:

  • Afghanistan
  • Australia
  • Bangladesh
  • Bahrain
  • Bhutan
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Cambodia
  • China PR
  • Guam
  • Hong Kong
  • Indonesia
  • India
  • IR Iran
  • Iraq
  • Jordan
  • Japan
  • Kyrgyz Republic
  • Korea Republic
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Kuwait
  • Laos
  • Lebanon
  • Macau
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Mongolia
  • Myanmar
  • Nepal
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Philippines
  • Palestine
  • Korea DPR
  • Qatar
  • Singapore
  • Sri Lanka
  • Syria
  • Thailand
  • Tajikistan
  • Turkmenistan
  • Timor-Leste
  • Chinese Taipei
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vietnam
  • Yemen
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Worldwide six countries will participate in a play-off mini-event for the last 2 (of the 48) 2026 World Cup tickets to earn. None will be from the European FIFA zone, UEFA. The other five zones will each send one country, while the continent of North America, as host, may also send the sixth country to compete for the final two tickets to the final round. As a result, at least 8 to possibly 9 countries from the FIFA zone AFC will qualify for the World Cup 2026.

Explained: How does the AFC qualification for the 2026 World Cup work?

Matches Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 1

  • Entrants: the 22 AFC countries that are lowest on the FIFA Ranking.
  • The 11 winners of the head-to-head matches advance to Round 2.

Round 1 first matches

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match 10-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 20-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 30-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 40-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 50-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 60-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 70-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 80-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 90-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 100-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 110-0

Round 1 returns

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match 120-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 130-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 140-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 150-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 160-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 170-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 180-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 190-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 200-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 210-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 220-0

Groups Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 2

  • Entrants: the 11 winners from Round 1 + the 25 top AFC countries in the FIFA Ranking = 36 teams.
  • The 18 numbers one and two of the groups advance to the AFC Asian Qualifiers.

Group A

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match A1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match A9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP APWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group B

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match B1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match B9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP BPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group C

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match C1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match C9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP CPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group D

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match D1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match D9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP DPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group E

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match E1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match E9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP EPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group F

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match F1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match F9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP FPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group G

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match G1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match G9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP GPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group H

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match H1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match H9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP HPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Group I

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match I1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 11 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 12 0-0

Standings

#GROUP IPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0

Groups AFC Asian Qualifiers

  • Entrants: the 18 numbers one and two from Round 2.
  • The 6 numbers one and two of the groups qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
  • The 6 numbers three and four of the groups proceed to the AFC Asian Playoffs.

Group I

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match I-1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match I-9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0

Standings

#GROUP IPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0
5Team 5000000-0
6Team 6000000-0

Group II

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match II1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match II9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0

Standings

#GROUP IIPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0
5Team 5000000-0
6Team 6000000-0

Group III

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match III1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III3 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III4 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III5 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III6 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III7 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III8 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match III9 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 10 0-0

Standings

#GROUP IIIPWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0
4Team 4000000-0
5Team 5000000-0
6Team 6000000-0

Groups AFC Asian Playoffs

  • Entrants: the 6 numbers three and four of the AFC Asian Qualifiers.
  • Both numbers one of the groups qualify for the 2026 FIFA World Cup.
  • Both numbers two of the groups will play a new mutual play-off match. Participation in the FIFA cross-continental World Cup 2026 play-offs is at stake.

Group 1

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match 1-1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 1-2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 1-3 0-0

Standings

#GROUP 1PWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0

Group 2

DATETIMEMATCHWHERERESULT
00-00-’0000:00Match 2-1 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 2-2 0-0
00-00-’0000:00Match 2-3 0-0

Standings

#GROUP 2PWDLPTSGD
1Team 1000000-0
2Team 2000000-0
3Team 3000000-0

AFC Qualification for FIFA World Cup | Format

The qualifying series in FIFA Zone AFC for the 2026 FIFA World Cup is structured as follows.

In the Asian qualifiers 46 countries compete for eight to nine tickets for the World Cup Football in North America. Matches are spread over four rounds. These will produce eight qualified countries. For one AFC nation, a resit is scheduled in the intercontinental play-offs.

Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 1

The 22 (of 46 participating) countries of the AFC football continent that are lowest on the FIFA Ranking will start in this first qualifying round. A draw results in eleven mutual matches. Each team plays an away game and a home game. The eleven winners will proceed to the Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 2.

Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 2

Round 2 consists of the eleven winners of the first qualifying round, supplemented by the top 25 teams from the FIFA / AFC Ranking. This makes a total of 36 teams. These nations are drawn into nine groups of four. Each country plays six games: home and away against each of their three group opponents. From each of the nine groups, the top two countries will advance to the third stage of the Asian World Cup qualifying series.

AFC Asian Qualifiers, Round 3

The eighteen most successful countries from Qualifying Round 2 will proceed to Round 3; the official AFC Asian World Cup Football Qualifiers. There will be three groups of six teams. Each country plays ten matches; home and away against each of their five group opponents. The six AFC nations that finish first and second in their group qualify directly for the World Cup 2026 finals. The teams that finish third and fourth join the Asian play-offs.

AFC Asian Playoffs, Round 4

In the AFC playoffs, the six numbers three and four of the three AFC Asian Qualifier Groups continue to play in two newly formed groups of three. All countries play against each other once, on neutral ground. This means that two new matches are scheduled for each team.

Both numbers one are then already assured of a 2026 World Cup finals entrance, in addition to the six countries that have already qualified directly for the World Cup in Round 3. Both numbers two will play another, mutual play-off game. The winner proceeds to the intercontinental play-offs. That final chance can result in one more AFC country to qualify for the FIFA World Cup Football: 9 instead of the minimum number of 8 AFC teams.

For more information on the latter, see 2026 World Cup intercontinental play-offs.

AFC 2026 World Cup Road combined with AFC Asian Cup qualifiers

Parallel to the AFC 2026 World Cup qualification, participation in the 2027 AFC Asian Cup is also at stake. The ten ‘worst’ losers from the Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 1 will play in five new, mutual AFC Asian Cup play-off matches. The winners will qualify for the final round of the AFC Asian Cup qualifying phase, consisting of 24 national teams in total. The ‘best’ loser from Round 1 is already allowed to advance to that stage directly. The same applies to the eighteen numbers 3 and 4 of the Preliminary Joint Qualification Round 2. These 24 countries are divided into six groups of four. Eventually, the six numbers one of these groups qualify for the 2027 AFC Asian Cup finals.

For more information on the AFC qualification format, see: AFC World Cup Football Qualifiers.


Main Info


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FIFA WORLD CUP QUALIFIcation

World Cup Football Qualifiers North America, Central America, Caribbean

Qualification North America, Central America, Caribbean

In North America, Central America and the Caribbean, the FIFA qualifiers run from March 18, 2024 to November 18, 2025. Six, seven or eight of the 32 participating CONCACAF nations qualify, joining hosts USA, Canada and Mexico.

World Cup Football Qualifiers South America

FIFA World Cup football Qualification South America

In South America, the FIFA World Cup qualifiers run from September 7, 2023 to September 9, 2025. A total of 10 CONMEBOL nations participate. Six to seven South American countries will qualify. There is one single round.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Europe

FIFA World Cup football qualification Europe

In Europe, the qualifiers run from March 17, 2025 to March 31, 2026. A total of 55 (of 54) UEFA nations participate. Sixteen European countries will qualify. There is one group stage (Round 1), followed by the European play-offs.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Asia

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Asia

In Asia, the World Cup qualification runs from October 12, 2023 to November, 2025. A total of 46 AFC nations participate. Eight or nine Asian countries will qualify. There are three qualifying rounds, before the play-offs.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Africa

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Africa

In Africa, the World Cup football qualifiers run from November 13, 2023 to November 18, 2025. A total of 54 CAF nations participate. Nine or ten African countries will qualify. There are two qualification rounds.

World Cup Football Qualifiers Oceania

FIFA World Cup football Qualification Oceania

In Oceania, the FIFA qualifiers for the World Cup football run from September, 2024 to March, 2025. Eleven OFC nations participate. One or two Oceanic countries qualify. There are three qualification rounds.


2026 HOST CITies & STADIUMS

Host Cities USA

The 2026 American Dream: the United States is one of the three hosts of the FIFA World Cup Soccer in North America. The USA is the host country with the most - eleven - host cities.

Host Cities Canada

With Vancouver, and Toronto, Canada has two host cities for the world's football finals in North America in 2026. Get more information about the characteristics of these exciting and diverse, dynamic cities.

Host Cities Mexico

With Guadalajara, Mexico City and Monterrey, Mexico has three candidate host cities for the World Cup in 2026. Each host with its specific ambience, history, attractions, hotspots and other features.

Stadiums USA

The United States will have eleven stadiums for the FIFA 2026 World Cup. Click for more information about these fantastic and modern venues in the USA, and which matches they will host.

Stadiums Canada

During the 2026 World Cup finals, these are the two venues in Canada: BC Place Stadium in Vancouver, and BMO Field in Toronto. Find out more about these attractive Canadian stadiums.

Stadiums Mexico

In Mexico, the FIFA 2026 World Cup will take place in these stadiums: Estadio Akron in Guadalajara, the Azteca Stadium in Mexico City and the BBVA Bancomer Stadium in Monterrey.