1998 FIFA World Cup qualification

1998 FIFA World Cup qualification
Tournament details
Teams 174 (from 6 confederations)
Tournament statistics
Matches played 643
Goals scored 1922 (2.99 per match)

A total of 174 teams entered the 1998 FIFA World Cup qualification rounds which began with the preliminary qualification draw on 12 December 1995 at Paris, competing for a total of 32 spots in the final tournament. This is the first time there would be 32 teams in the finals. France, as the hosts, and Brazil, as the defending champions, qualified automatically, leaving 30 spots open for competition.

The 32 spots available in the 1998 World Cup would be distributed among the continental zones as follows:

A total of 168 teams played at least one qualifying match. A total of 643 qualifying matches were played, and 1922 goals were scored (an average of 2.99 per match).

In the event, the final was played between the two automatic qualifiers.

Continental zones

To see the dates and results of the qualification rounds for each continental zone, click on the following articles:

Group 1 – Denmark qualified. Croatia advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 2 – England qualified. Italy advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 3 – Norway qualified. Hungary advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 4 – Austria qualified. Scotland also qualified with the best record among the runners-up.
Group 5 – Bulgaria qualified. Russia advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 6 – Spain qualified. Yugoslavia advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 7 – Netherlands qualified. Belgium advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 8 – Romania qualified. Republic of Ireland advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Group 9 – Germany qualified. Ukraine advanced to the UEFA play-offs.
Play-offs – Croatia, Italy, Belgium and Yugoslavia qualified over Ukraine, Russia, Republic of Ireland and Hungary respectively.
Argentina, Paraguay, Colombia and Chile qualified.
Mexico, USA and Jamaica qualified.
Group 1 – Nigeria qualified.
Group 2 – Tunisia qualified.
Group 3 – South Africa qualified.
Group 4 – Cameroon qualified.
Group 5 – Morocco qualified.
Group A – Saudi Arabia qualified. Iran advanced to the AFC play-off.
Group B – South Korea qualified. Japan advanced to the AFC play-off.
Play-off – Japan qualified. Iran advanced to the AFC–OFC intercontinental play-off.
Australia advanced to the AFC–OFC intercontinental play-off.

Intercontinental play-offs

The teams would play against each other on a home-and-away basis. The winner would qualify.

AFC–OFC intercontinental play-off

22 November 1997
Iran  1–1  Australia
Azizi  40' Kewell  19'
Azadi Stadium, Tehran
Attendance: 128,000
Referee: Pierluigi Pairetto (Italy)

29 November 1997
Australia  2–2  Iran
Kewell  32'
Vidmar  48'
Bagheri  71'
Azizi  75'

The aggregate score was tied 3–3, and Iran qualified due to the away goals rule.

Qualified teams

Final qualification status
  Country qualified for World Cup
  Country failed to qualify
  Country did not enter World Cup
  Country not a FIFA member

The following 32 teams qualified for the 1998 FIFA World Cup:

Team Qualified as Qualification date Appearance
in finals
Previous best performance
 France (h)Host2 July 1992 10th1 (Last: 1986) Third Place (1958, 1986)
 Brazil (c)Defending Champions17 July 1994 16th16 Winners (1958, 1962, 1970, 1994)
 NigeriaCAF Final Round Group 1 Winners7 June 19972nd2Round of 16 (1994)
 TunisiaCAF Final Round Group 2 Winners8 June 19972nd1 (Last: 1978)Group Stage (1978)
 MoroccoCAF Final Round Group 5 Winners8 June 19974th2Round of 16 (1986)
 South AfricaCAF Final Round Group 3 Winners16 August 19971st1
 CameroonCAF Final Round Group 4 Winners17 August 19974th3Quarter Finals (1990)
 RomaniaUEFA Group 8 Winners20 August 19977th3Quarter Finals (1994)
 NorwayUEFA Group 3 Winners6 September 19973rd2Group Stage (1938, 1994)
 BulgariaUEFA Group 5 Winners10 September 19977th2Fourth Place (1994)
 ArgentinaCONMEBOL Winners10 September 199712th7Winners (1978, 1986)
 ColombiaCONMEBOL Third Place10 September 19974th3Round of 16 (1990)
 ParaguayCONMEBOL Runners-Up10 September 19975th1 (Last: 1986)Round of 16 (1986)
 DenmarkUEFA Group 1 Winners11 October 19972nd1 (Last: 1986)Round of 16 (1986)
 EnglandUEFA Group 2 Winners11 October 199710th1 (Last: 1990)Winners (1966)
 AustriaUEFA Group 4 Winners11 October 19977th1 (Last: 1990)Third Place (1954)
 SpainUEFA Group 6 Winners11 October 199710th6Fourth Place (1950)
 NetherlandsUEFA Group 7 Winners11 October 19976th3Runners-Up (1974, 1978)
 GermanyUEFA Group 9 Winners11 October 199714th12Winners (1954, 1974, 1990)
 ScotlandBest runner-up11 October 19978th1 (Last: 1990)Group Stage (1954, 1958, 1974, 1978, 1982, 1986, 1990)
 MexicoCONCACAF Fourth Round Winners12 October 199711th2Quarter Finals (1970, 1986)
 South KoreaAFC Final Round Group B Winners18 October 19975th4Group Stage (1954, 1986, 1990, 1994)
 United StatesCONCACAF Fourth Round Runners-Up9 November 19976th3Third Place (1930)
 Saudi ArabiaAFC Final Round Group A Winners12 November 19972nd2Round of 16 (1994)
 CroatiaUEFA Play-off Winners15 November 19971st1
 ItalyUEFA Play-off Winners15 November 199714th10Winners (1934, 1938, 1982)
 BelgiumUEFA Play-off Winners15 November 199710th5Fourth Place (1986)
 YugoslaviaUEFA Play-off Winners15 November 19979th1 (Last: 1990)Fourth Place (1930, 1962)
 JapanAFC Play-off Winners16 November 19971st1
 JamaicaCONCACAF Fourth Round Third Place16 November 19971st1
 ChileCONMEBOL Fourth Place16 November 19977th1 (Last: 1982)Third Place (1962)
 IranAFC v OFC Play-off Winners29 November 19972nd1 (Last: 1978)Group Stage (1978)

(h) – qualified automatically as hosts

(c) – qualified automatically as defending champions

1Includes 10 appearances by DFB representing West Germany between 1954 and 1990.
2Excludes appearances by pre-division Yugoslavia. If those are counted together, this is their 9th appearance, and their previous appearance was in 1990.


External links

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