The 2018 FIFA World Cup Finals draw was made last week at the Kremlin in Moscow, the main host city for the tournament next summer. The event saw all 32 teams placed into eight different groups. As one of Europe’s biggest sides, Chelsea will have a strong contingent of players on show in Russia. Blues players could feature in up to nine of the nations that will be competing next year and today, we take a look at them.
Group G: Belgium & England
The main group that Chelsea fans should take an interest in is Group G, where Belgium and England have been placed. The Belgians will have Eden Hazard, who is their current captain, Thibaut Courtois and Michy Batshuayi representing them at the World Cup and with his good form in the under-21 side, Charly Musonda might be pushing for a place in the side. They will face Blues captain Gary Cahill in their final group game on the June 28 in Kaliningrad as they face England, who may also have Danny Drinkwater in the side. Both countries will be expected to make it through to the last 16 with minnows Panama and Tunisia making up the rest of Group G.
Group B: Spain
Spain could benefit from the impact of five Chelsea players in Group B, as Cesc Fabregas, Alvaro Morata, Pedro and Cesar Azpilicueta will all expect to make the Spanish squad for next summer’s tournament. Marcos Alonso has never made an appearance for the Spain national team but he has been given some confidence of receiving his first cap at the World Cup by manager Julen Lopetegui. Spain have been drawn alongside Euro 2016 winners, Portugal, Morocco and Iran and will be favourites to go through as group winners.
Group C: Denmark & France
Group C could see the inclusion of three of Antonio Conte’s players and Andreas Christensen, who has recently been a mainstay in the Chelsea side, will be one of Denmark’s star men. He may come up against his team-mates N’Golo Kante and Tiemoue Bakayoko for France in the final group game in Moscow. The two European sides should progress ahead of Peru and Australia in Group C.
Group D: Croatia & Nigeria
Mario Palasic, who is currently on loan at Spartak Moscow, should make Croatia’s World Cup squad as he has already made four appearances for his national side at just 22. He will be joined in Group D by Nigeria, who will have Victor Moses, Ola Aina and possibly Kenneth Omeruo at their disposal from the Chelsea ranks. The other two members of the group are Argentina and Iceland in a very tough Group D.
Group E & F: Brazil & Germany
Brazil are one of the favourites to take home the World Cup trophy and they will be helped by two Chelsea stars, Willian and David Luiz, in Group E. They find themselves in an easy group alongside Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia. Blues new boy, Antonio Rudiger will be hoping to represent Germany in Group F as they look to get through a group that consists of Mexico, Sweden and South Korea.
Group A and Group H won’t have any Chelsea input despite having interest from other Premier League sides.