The postponed play-off semi-final with Ukraine, and final between the winners and Wales, means all three will be included as one entrant to the group stage draw.
It only comes round once every four years and will tee up the greatest football show on earth – so here’s how you can tune in and watch the World Cup group stage draw for the big event in Qatar this November, and find out who Steve Clarke’s team could get if they make it all the way for the first time since 1998.
When is the 2022 World Cup drawn?
The draw will go ahead, as planned on April 1 in Doha. There had been a suggestion it could be delayed due to some places not being confirmed, but FIFA have decided to proceed with the draw and establish the three remaining entrants in June. It begins around 5pm UK time.
How will it work?
FIFA have confirmed the group seeds for each of the eight four-team groups in the first round, ordered by the FIFA World Ranking. As hosts Qatar are guaranteed Group A. The remaining seeded sides are new world number one nation Brazil, reigning champions France, Argentina, Belgium, England, Spain and Portugal. The other entrants are split into three eight-team pots based on their ranking.
The only caveat is that no four-team group drawn can have more than two European teams.
Who has qualified to be in the 2022 World Cup?
So far 29 nations have places confirmed. They include hosts Qatar and the seven top seeds, pot two will be Netherlands, Denmark, Germany, Switerland, Croatia, Mexico, USA and Uruguay.
Pot Three includes Iran, Japan, Morocco, Serbia, Poland, South Korea, Senegal and Tunisia.
Pot Four has five certain teams included; Ecuador, Saudi Arabia, Ghana, Cameroon and Canada.
Three place-holders will also enter this pot representing the last European play-off winner (Scotland, Ukraine or Wales) to be decided in June, and the winners of two inter-confederation play-offs – Peru v Australia or UAE, and New Zealand v Costa Rica. These will be held on June 13 and 14 in Qatar.
How to watch the Qatar 2022 group stage draw
BBC One will broadcast the draw live from 4.45pm, with an online stream via iPlayer. Another will be available at FIFA.com. As soon as it is made we’ll have all the relevant updates on scotsman.com too.
What are the key dates for the Qatar 2022 World Cup?
As well as Friday’s draw, red letter days include the Opening Ceremony and first match on November 21, the knock-out round of 16 commences on December 3 and the final will be on December 18. There will also be a third-placed play- off the day before the end.
What are Scotland’s chances?
Scotland are currently 500/1 to win it – but they’ve still to see off Ukraine and Wales to reach the Finals. If they do, they’d be in Pot Four so lowest-ranked in each group. There are no easy draws but a set-up of Qatar, Switzerland and Tunisia or Iran (not withstanding memories of 1978) would suit Steve Clarke, but a group of death scenario could be Brazil, Germany and Japan.
George Holan is chief editor at Plainsmen Post and has articles published in many notable publications in the last decade.