The greatest football show on earth is returning. This year’s World Cup is set to grab the attention of the football and betting world more than any previous edition. A total of 29 teams have already qualified, but – going into the summer – there are still three places up for grabs. Those final spots will be sewn up in June, via some seriously high-stakes World Cup 2022 Qualifiers.
The betting action is sure to be frenetic ahead of these games. To help guide you through the permutations, we’ve put together this complete guide to wagering on the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers. Read on to find out about the teams, the matches, the best markets and the best football betting sites in the UK.
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2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifiers Betting Odds
This year’s World Cup is being staged in Qatar, in November rather than its customary June start date. That means FIFA had longer to arrange the qualifying competitions. The war in Ukraine has also had an impact, with Russia being disqualified.
By the middle of June though, the qualification places will be decided. On June 1, Scotland will play Ukraine, with the winners of that game meeting Wales on June 5 to decide the last UEFA qualification place.
Two days later, the UAE takes on Australia in the AFC Fourth Round match, with the winner going forward to play Peru for a World Cup place on June 13. Finally, on June 14, the last World Cup qualification place will be handed to either New Zealand (winners of the OFC qualifying tournament) or Costa Rica, who finished fourth in CONCACAF.
All of the qualifying games will attract plenty of betting action, and – as you can see from this table – bookies are not all in agreement on the odds. Note that – while the prices for European clashes are always released far ahead of time – those for other confederations only tend to come out much closer to the game itself.
|Scotland vs. Ukraine||1: 5/4
|UAE vs. Australia||1: 10/3
|Currently Unavailable||Currently Unavailable||1: 7/2
|Costa Rica vs. New Zealand||1: 7/10
|Currently Unavailable||Currently Unavailable||Currently Unavailable|
FIFA World Cup Qualifiers Playoffs: Our Top Five Bookies
The World Cup attracts the attention of all the world’s bookmakers. Football is the biggest betting sport, and the World Cup is the highlight of the football calendar every four years. Some bookies, however, are better than others when it comes to offering a good deal to football punters, with these being the five top brands of all.
1. Bet365 – Best All-Round Qualifiers Betting Site
Bet365 is one of the world’s most popular sports betting platforms. Live streaming with a large schedule each day, cash-out, in-play betting, bet builders and the Edit Bet tool are among its many excellent features. The site also includes news and results, as well as statistics and betting tips.
While Bet365 offers markets for thousands of football events throughout the season, their coverage of key international competitions is unparalleled. They’re one of the few brands to offer match odds far in advance for even the less-heralded World Cup 2022 Qualifiers, and will certainly provide sensational coverage when the tournament itself kicks off.
2. Paddy Power – Top World Cup Qualifiers Playoffs Betting Bonuses
Paddy Power is an Irish bookmaker that has established an excellent reputation. It provides a user-friendly online platform with a large number of sports to pick from, and its football and horse racing sections in particular are extremely impressive. You can also get the latest betting news, request odds with #WhatOddsPaddy, utilise the free bet calculator, watch live sports, and place a football Same Game Multi bet on their platform.
Elsewhere, Paddy Power is well known for their innovative bonuses and promotions. Many of these are usually focused on major events such as the World Cup, and we’re confident they’ll have more enticing deals in place when Qatar 2022 rolls around.
3. Betfred – Top-Notch World Cup Qualifiers Betting Odds
Betfred is a well-known platform with an excellent track record, which provides a solid all-round betting option for punters. Its site doesn’t offer as many sports as some rivals, but it’s certainly strong on the key football events. You can also find a range of handy features here, including live streaming, cash-out, in-play, #PickYourPunt, and Daily Price Boosts.
Many promotions and bonuses are also available, including a solid welcome deal, and it’s highly likely that World Cup 2022-specific deals will be provided. The mobile app is top-notch too, and is certainly one of the best on the market for on-the-go football betting.
4. BoyleSports – Best Price Boosts for World Cup Qualifiers Playoffs
BoyleSports is one of Ireland’s most well-known online betting companies. It has been in business since 1982, and has grown to become the country’s largest independent bookmaker.
Horse racing and football are its key strengths, and for some of the major international tournaments, particularly the World Cup, football punters can bet pre-match or in-play on hundreds of markets. Football betting fans can also find a variety of football-related incentives for their World Cup 2022 Qualifiers betting, such as Price Boosts and Cash Back. The customer service here is excellent too, and both the main website and mobile app are simple to navigate and use.
WC Qualifiers Fixtures and Playoffs
As mentioned above, there are three remaining qualification places up for grabs, but eight teams still have hopes of reaching Qatar. The final qualifiers will be decided through five different matches, featuring teams from Europe, Asia, Central America and Oceania.
AFC World Cup Qualification
A total of 4.5 qualifying places were available to Asian teams, in addition to Qatar, who qualified as hosts. The 0.5 refers to the fact that the fifth-best Asian team will enter an Inter-Continental playoff, one of two to feature in this round of World Cup games.
A total of 45 teams entered the AFC qualifying tournament. Over two rounds, this number was cut to 12 and these were divided in two for the World Cup group stage qualifying, from which the winners and runners-up would automatically qualify. Iran were the most impressive team in the qualifiers, winning eight games to top Group A. South Korea took the second Group A qualifying spot.
In Group B, Saudi Arabia and Japan qualified in first and second, but Australia were a major disappointment, finishing way off the pace in Group B. They will take on the UAE in the AFC play off game, staged in Doha, Qatar, on June 7. The winner of that game will then play against the fifth-ranked team from the South American qualification tournament, Peru, to decide who qualifies. Since there are still a couple of stages to go, we’d probably recommend betting on the Socceroos game-by-game, if you do fancy them, rather than putting an outright wager down.
UEFA World Cup Qualifiers Results
Traditionally the strongest FIFA Federation, UEFA is granted 13 places at the World Cup. Ten of these places were filled by the winners of the ten qualifying Groups. The ten Group
runners-up, along with two teams who’d performed well in the 2021 Nations League tournament, were then split into three paths of four teams each. Each section was played on a knockout basis, with the eventual winner qualifying.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine meant they were disqualified, and gave their playoff opponents, Poland, a bye to the Path B final, where they beat Sweden to qualify for the World Cup. There was drama in Path C as Italy sensationally lost at home to North Macedonia, who subsequently lost to Portugal in the final.
The situation in Ukraine meant that the Path A section was partially delayed. Wales defeated Austria in their semi-final, but will have to wait until June 5 to play the final. They will face the winners of the game between Scotland and Ukraine, which will be held in Glasgow on June 1. All of these remaining matchups look extremely close on paper, meaning you can get solid odds on any 1/X/2 pick you fancy.
With only 32 places available, FIFA has to balance the relative strengths of the confederations, which has resulted in two inter-confederation qualifying games.
As mentioned above, the team that eventually emerges as the fifth-best in the AFC will play against the fifth-best team in South America on June 13, at a venue in Doha.
The other inter-confederation game will be between the OFC winner New Zealand and the fourth-best team in Central America, Costa Rica. The weakness of the OFC means that this is the only confederation that doesn’t get an automatic place in the World Cup. On their way to winning the OFC tournament, New Zealand beat Papua New Guinea, Fiji, Tahiti and the Solomon Islands.
They will face a difficult task against a rugged Costa Rica team, which finished fourth in the CONCACAF qualifying section, narrowly missing out on automatic qualification, just behind the USA. This looks like a tremendously close showdown on paper, so you may want to bet it in-play, rather than attempting to predict the outcome in advance.
World Cup Qualifiers: Scotland v Ukraine
Kieran Tierney will be missing for the culmination of the Scotland World Cup qualifiers in 2022, which is a huge blow given the importance of the Arsenal man, but their preparations have been idyllic compared to the difficulties that the Ukrainian players have had to wrestle with over the last few weeks.
Ukraine played against Borussia Monchengladbach, the German club side, in a friendly earlier this month, but some key players will be short of match fitness, while overseas-based stars like Oleksandr Zinchenko have only recently joined up with the group.
Ukraine will be the neutral’s favourite, and they are ranked more highly than Scotland according to the FIFA ratings. Scotland are a tough team to beat at Hampden Park though, which generates a fantastic atmosphere on occasions like this. In fact, they are unbeaten in 12 games at home, going back to the autumn of 2019, and – with a home crowd roaring them on – they will be big favourites here.
Scotland to Qualify: 5/4 – Bet365
Ukraine to Qualify: 3/1 – BoyleSports
World Cup Qualifiers: UAE v Australia
Both of these AFC teams topped their groups in the second round of AFC qualification, but their campaigns faltered in the third round.
The UAE didn’t win any of their first five, and only saw off the challenge of Iraq by beating South Korea in their last game. Meanwhile Australia won only one of their last seven games, losing to China and Saudi Arabia as well as being held to a draw by Oman.
Whichever team wins here will be the underdog at the next stage when they take on Peru for the final place in the World Cup. While there is little to choose between them on form, UAE will be playing in Qatar, in conditions with which they are more familiar. They were also victorious the last time they played Australia, in the Asia Cup in 2019.
UAE to Win: 7/2 – Paddy Power
Australia to Win: 8/11 – Paddy Power
World Cup Qualifiers: Costa Rica v New Zealand
New Zealand had no real difficulty coming through the OFC qualifying tournament, where there is very little in the way of significant opposition. There is a world of difference, however, between beating Tahiti and the Solomon Islands and taking on a battle-hardened Costa Rica.
That the game will be staged in Qatar will level the playing field to an extent, but New Zealand still face a tough task. Costa Rica won only one of their first six CONCACAF qualifying games, but they then went on a strong run, which concluded with a victory over the USA, ultimately missing out on the World Cup on goal difference. In fact, they won six of their last seven, and conceded only two goals in the process.
The flip side of that defensive strength is that they don’t score many. That may not be an issue, however, against a New Zealand side that is ranked 70 places lower in the FIFA ratings.
Costa Rica to Win: 7/10 – Bet365
New Zealand to Win: 9/2 – Bet365
Best World Cup Qualification Betting Markets
When it comes to betting on the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers, punters have an extremely wide range of options. To help narrow these down though, these can be broadly grouped under three headings.
These are some of the most straightforward and popular forms of market available for the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers. All of the bookmakers will offer outright markets, which usually just means you are betting on a team to qualify.
The detail of the bet will vary according to which qualifier you are betting on. For example, in the case of Costa Rica and New Zealand, betting on which team will qualify with Paddy Power is effectively the same as betting on that single game, with the draw taken out of the equation.
In the case of the other two games, it is important to remember that you are betting on a selection of three teams. So if you are betting on Scotland to qualify, you are betting on them beating both Ukraine and Wales in order to earn a qualification spot.
This type of bet is well suited to those who are confident that they can accurately weigh up the strengths of the teams, and who feel they have an edge through this knowledge.
Team props cover all those specialist markets that are focused on the performance of the team. This includes the traditional Match Winner markets, which you will find at all bookmakers. In such a market, you will have the option of betting on Team A, Team B or the normal-time draw. Some match-winner markets simply refer to which team will ultimately win the tie, even if it takes extra time or penalties to do so, but you should clarify this in advance before placing your wager.
Top World Cup 2022 Qualifiers bookies like Bet365 will also offer a range of other team prop bets, of which the most popular is arguably the Over/Under. These bets are usually based around the total number of goals that will be scored in a game, with the standard Over/Under mark set at 2.5, although you can often find markets based around 0.5, 1.5, 3.5 and even 4.5.
The Over/Under markets require a little lateral thinking, as they involve weighing up the way that a game will be played, the styles of the two teams, and their psychology, so can be useful alternative angles to the traditional Match Winner options.
The other type of market you are likely to see come under the heading of ‘player props’. This refers to bets that are based entirely around the performance of individual players.
The most common is First Goalscorer. If you open up the First Goalscorer market for a World Cup qualifier on the BoyleSports site, for example, you will find a list of all of the possible players with a price next to their name. You will also see ‘No Goalscorer’ as an option.
Betting in this market is more volatile than some other markets, as the outcome is more of a lottery. In turn though, you’ll find higher odds on offer. There are occasionally some especially high prices to be found on players who tend to score more often than expected for their position, such as central defenders who score from set pieces.
You will also find a range of other Player Prop markets, including First Card, and this can be an ideal market for those punters who really know their players, their playing styles, habits and temperament.
World Cup Qualifiers Playoffs Betting: How to Place a Bet
In a World Cup year, there is always a surge of additional interest in football betting, and bookmakers work hard to ensure that it is straightforward for new customers to sign up and register. The process will vary slightly, according to which site you use, but the essential steps are as follows:
Step 1 – Pick a Brand
The first step is obviously to choose your preferred betting brand. There is plenty of information available on this site to help you with this, including – naturally – our list of the top rated World Cup 2022 Qualifiers betting sites at the top of this page.
Take your time to check out the different options and make sure that the site you choose offers all of the markets and features that you are looking for, including strong customer support, a range of banking options and regular bonuses and promotions. For the purposes of this guide, we’ll assume you’ve gone with the user-friendly Paddy Power.
Step 2 – Sign Up
Once you’ve chosen your preferred sportsbook, you simply have to register for a new account. This can be done by clicking on the Join or Register option on the homepage, then following the indicated steps.
You will be asked to enter your personal details into the online registration form, including your name, address, email contact, date of birth, preferred username and password. You will also be able to choose what sort of promotions you wish to receive, and your preferred language and currency. Once you click on Confirm, your new account will be ready to use.
Step 3 – Make a Deposit
Before you can make a bet, you will need to make your first deposit. To do this, you simply navigate to the Payments or Cashier section of the site. You will be given a range of banking options, which will vary according to the site that you use. Then you simply have to click on your preferred option, enter the relevant account details, set your deposit amount, and confirm the payment.
Step 4 – Place Bets
With your account funded, you can make your first World Cup 2022 Qualifiers bets. Before you do so, take a little time to familiarise yourself with the layout of the site and how to get to all of the relevant markets and events that you are looking for.
When you’re ready to bet, just head over to the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers section, click on your preferred matchup and bet type, and that selection will appear in your betting slip. You can then set your stake, check things over, and confirm the bet.
Step 5 – Verify ID
As a new customer, you will be asked to verify your ID, either at the registration stage or when you come to make your first withdrawal. This is a simple process, and helps to keep sites safe for all to use.
To verify your ID, upload digital copies of two documents, such as a passport and a recent utility bill. Most sites will process these quickly, usually within 24 hours, and you can then go ahead and start making withdrawals.
Step 6 – Make a Withdrawal
If you enjoy some betting success, you’ll likely want to withdraw your winnings at some point. To do so, head back to the Cashier section of the site and click on the withdrawal option. You will usually have to withdraw your money using the same method as you used for your deposit, and the withdrawal times will vary depending not only on this, but on the efficiency of the site in this area.
World Cup Qualifiers 2022 Betting Strategies
Every successful sports punter has a strategy, and thinking ahead when you are betting is key to success. Here are some suggestions to help you form your own strategy for betting on the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers.
1 – Follow a Staking Plan
Betting without a staking plan can be a recipe for disaster. Having a staking plan means that you don’t have to worry about how much to bet each time, and can focus instead on finding the best value bets. It also helps to keep you in the game for the long haul, and reduces the risk of you blowing up your betting account.
Some staking plans can be complicated. We’d recommend starting with a simple, level-stakes plan, betting a fixed amount of your bankroll on each wager, and taking things from there.
2 – Mix your Bet Types
This strategy is not for everyone, but even if you don’t bet on the various different markets, it is a good idea to spend some time studying them. As we’ve covered already, you can bet on a wide variety of markets when it comes to World Cup 2022 Qualifiers, from simple outright qualification markets to pre-match and in-play markets. Having a knowledge of these markets, and how they work, can help you to spot opportunities when they arise.
3 – Stay Informed
Team news is vital when it comes to World Cup 2022 Qualifiers, particularly at the end of a long hard season when many players are carrying injuries. Keeping on top of the latest team news, through social media or other online sources, can give you an edge if you are able to move quickly enough.
How to Watch the FIFA World Cup 2022 Playoffs Fixtures in the UK
Actually watching the games is a key part of any football betting strategy. When you are betting on the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers, it is also a great idea to see as much of the action as possible.
In the UK, the main option will be to watch the games on regular television. Sky is the leading resource for live football in the UK, although BT Sport also covers some of the big games. Terrestrial channels, such as the BBC, may offer highlights programs, and there will be plenty of highlights available online or through official broadcasting and FIFA sites.
Finally, sportsbooks themselves can be a good source of football coverage, with the likes of Bet365 and Paddy Power being especially excellent. Some betting sites will provide streaming coverage of the qualifying games, and this can be a handy way to follow the action. Most, however, will limit you to simply following along via a visualisation tool and live stats.
World Cup 2022 Qualifiers In-Play Betting
In-play is a distinct form of football betting that can reward punters who both know their football, and who can react quickly to a changing situation. Most bookmakers offer some form of Qatar World Cup live betting, usually combined with live streaming or other forms of in-game coverage.
Like any form of gambling, in-play betting isn’t something to launch into without preparation and being aware of the particular skills required. Here are some essential tips to get you started:
1 – Always watch the games live
You can’t hope to have an edge on your fellow punters if they are watching the game but you aren’t. Do be aware of the delay in broadcasting coverage, however, that will vary according to the source that you are using.
2 – Be patient
It is easy to get caught up in the action when you’re betting live. Try to avoid the temptation to place completely impulsive wagers. Instead, stay patient, base your reactions on the research that you’ve done pre-game, and wait for your opportunity.
3 – Move quickly when value is available
When a value bet presents itself, you have to be able to act quickly. Having a set staking pattern can help here, as you don’t have to think about what stake to use, saving valuable seconds.
As in all areas, not all World Cup 2022 Qualifiers betting sites are created equal when it comes to in-play. These three, however, are exceptional in this respect:
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World Cup Qualifiers 2022 Betting Offers in the UK
Betting offers are everywhere during a World Cup year, and new punters have plenty of choice when it comes to claiming bonuses. Not every offer will be suitable, but finding the right deal can give your betting a handy boost during the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers.
UK betting offers like these generally come in two main forms:
Sign Up Offers
This is the most common form of betting offer you will see in the UK. A sign up offer is awarded to customers when they register their account, and will usually be in the form of a ‘Bet X, Get Y’ deal, or a ‘Deposit Match’.
In the former case, you place a qualifying wager and are rewarded with free bets. In the latter, a bookmaker will guarantee to match the amount of your first deposit up to a maximum level. Either way, the free bets will come with terms and conditions, and it is important to read these thoroughly before committing to a deal.
Bookmakers also provide ongoing promotions, to reward punters for their ongoing loyalty. These are often related to specific events, and we expect to see plenty of World Cup-related bonuses this winter, including boosted odds for these games and cashback deals. Having specific promotions for World Cup 2022 Qualifiers is a little less likely, but you should still keep an eye on the Promotions page of your favourite bookmaker to see if anything does crop up.
FIFA World Cup 2022 Qualifiers Table
At the time of writing, 29 of the 32 available spots for the World Cup have been filled, with the remaining three being contested in the World Cup 2022 Qualifiers. Below, you can get a quick overview of how the teams who have already qualified stack up, in terms of both their historical pedigree and Bet365’s opinion on how they’ll perform this time around.
|Team||Confederation||World Cup Appearances||Odds to Win
World Cup Qualifiers Africa
53 sides from across Africa duked it out for only five CAF spots for the 2022 World Cup. Morocco and Tunisia got in smoothly enough, but Ghana and Cameroon only made it on away goals. Most dramatic of all was the rematch of the African Cup of Nations final, in which Senegal once again nipped past Egypt on penalties.
World Cup 2022 Qualifiers Europe
55 countries technically qualify for the UEFA qualifiers, from powerhouses like Germany to minnows like San Marino. These were split into 10 groups, with the winners going straight through, and the likes of Denmark and Germany particularly impressing. The remaining sides went into a playoff system. This has already seen Portugal and Poland qualify, with one further spot – for Wales, Scotland, or Ukraine – up for grabs.
World Cup Asia Qualifiers
AFC qualifying is spread across four rounds, in a slightly convoluted system. Ultimately though, four teams achieved automatic qualification: Uran, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Japan. The UAE and Australia both finished third in their groups, and now face a showdown for the final qualifying spot.
World Cup Qualifiers North America, Central America, and the Caribbean
CONCACAF also has a fairly complicated qualifying system, split across three rounds. The most important news, though, was that Canada, Mexico, and the USA finished in the top three spots, and will all go to Qatar. Costa Rica only just missed out, and must now beat New Zealand to get through.
Football World Cup 2022 Qualifiers South America
The CONMEBOL qualifying format is nice and straightforward, with the 10 teams simply playing each other home and away. The top four sides qualify automatically, which – in this case – saw Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, and Ecuador safely through. Peru finished fifth, and will face an inter-confederation playoff against an AFC side.
World Cup Qualifiers Oceania
Only seven countries entered into OFC qualifying, and – with all due respect to the other six sides – New Zealand is the strongest footballing nation by far. The Kiwis beat the Solomon Islands en route to their winner-takes-all inter-confederation playoff with Costa Rica, which will take place on the 14th of June.
World Cup Qualifiers Playoffs Betting – Final Thoughts
The World Cup 2022 Qualifiers are fast-approaching, and – if you want to get some wagers down – now’s the time to start planning ahead. These games carry the highest-possible stakes for the teams involved, making them a fascinating proposition to not only watch, but to bet on too.
After reading this article, you should have a thorough understanding of what’s involved with the upcoming World Cup 2022 Qualifiers. All that remains for you to do is pick one of our recommended bookies, create an account, grab a welcome offer, and start having fun.
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