FA worries on seeding for World Cup draw
The Football Association have expressed their disappointment after England missed out on a place among the top seeds for the qualifying draw for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa. England's defeat by Croatia led to them being overtaken by Greece in FIFA's world rankings, on which the seedings will be based for the draw in Durban tomorrow. England will join Scotland among the nine second seeds. An FA spokesman said: 'Of course it's disappointing. We would have obviously preferred to be one of the top seeds but we have just got to get on with it. 'We have been here before, we were second seeds in the qualifying competition for the 1998 World Cup in France under Glenn Hoddle. We had to play Italy then and we got through. 'The challenge for the new manager and his players will be to take on whatever they are presented with. Let's not worry about the draw, let's just wait and see what it produces and it's a challenge the new manager will have to take on.' Greece overtook England by just a single point in the rankings courtesy of their victories in November's two Euro 2008 qualifiers - Otto Rehhagel's side gained 80 points to a total of 1,114 while England dropped 24 points to 1,113 after their dismal defeat by Croatia. It means England will have to face one of the top seeds - the likes of Italy, Germany, France, Portugal or Spain - and as only the nine group winners automatically secure qualification, the task may not be a straightforward one. Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, ranked 32nd and 35th in the world respectively, will both be among the group of third seeds while Wales, ranked 58th in the world, will one of the group of fourth seeds. The draw will split the 53 European countries into eight groups of six teams, and one group of five. The nine group-winners will qualify automatically and the best eight runners-up will go into home and away play-off matches for the remaining four places. Sunday's draw starts at 1500 GMT. Asia's groups will be drawn first, followed by those in the CONCACAF region (north and central America and the Caribbean), then Europe and finally Africa. There is no draw for South America and the Oceania region, who have already started their preliminary competitions.