Scotland and Wales both drawn in Path A; Scotland to face Ukraine at Hampden Park while Wales welcome Austria to Cardiff; Italy and Portugal in Path C so can't both qualify; 2022 World Cup runs from November 21 to December 18; the play-offs to reach Qatar take place from March 24 to 29
Saturday 27 November 2021 07:21, UK
Scotland and Wales could face off for a place at next year's World Cup should they defeat Ukraine and Austria in their respective play-off semi-finals.
Both nations were drawn in Path A, with Scotland facing Ukraine at Hampden Park and Wales welcoming Austria to Cardiff.
Wales will have home advantage against Scotland or Ukraine should they progress to the play-off final.
Italy and Portugal were drawn in Path C, meaning they cannot both qualify for next year's tournament in Qatar.
European champions Italy were drawn against North Macedonia, the lowest-ranked team in the play-offs with a world ranking of 67.
Italy, who failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, will have home advantage for that tie and would travel to Portugal or Turkey in a potential heavyweight final clash.
Russia will be at home to Poland in their play-off semi-final with the winners hosting Sweden or the Czech Republic in another final.
Scotland, who last reached the World Cup in 1998, clinched a home semi-final by winning their last six qualifying matches.
Steve Clarke's side face a Ukraine team that reached the Euro 2020 quarter-finals before running out of steam against England.
Ukraine finished a point above Finland in the qualifiers to seal runners-up spot behind France, going through the group undefeated after winning twice and drawing six times.
Austria finished third behind Scotland in Group F but qualified for the play-offs through the UEFA Nations League. Captained by Real Madrid's David Alaba, they took Italy to extra-time in the last 16 of Euro 2020.
Wales, whose only World Cup finals appearance in 1958 came after a play-off victory over Israel, were unbeaten in their last six qualifiers and drew at home to Belgium in their final match to clinch second spot in Group E.
World Cup play-off draw
Scotland vs Ukraine
Wales vs Austria
Russia vs Poland
Sweden vs Czech Republic
Italy vs North Macedonia
Portugal vs Turkey
The play-offs to reach Qatar take place from March 24 to 29