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ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

2018 World Cup qualifying - how it works

The qualifying process for the 2018 World Cup began on March 12, 2015 with preliminary ties between the 12 lowest-ranked nations in Asia.

Chiquito Do Carmo of Timor-Leste had the honour of scoring the very first goal on the road to Russia in a 4-1 victory at home to Mongolia.

There are 31 places up for grabs, joining hosts Russia.

  

EUROPE:

13 places

• European qualifying home page

Qualifying for 2018 sees seven groups of six nations and two groups of five. 

Russia...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Bradley says blame for U.S. team stumbles is on everyone's shoulders

Michael Bradley admits the USMNT form has slipped but refuses to pass blame to anyone specifically.

United States captain Michael Bradley said the blame for the national team's slow start to the Hex phase of CONCACAF World Cup qualifying is on everyone's shoulders.

Bradley, 29, believes that everyone on the team has let "too many things slip" in their first two matches of the Hex -- a home loss to Mexico in Columbus, Ohio, and an away thrashing at the hands of Costa Rica that ultimately cost manager Jurgen Klinsmann his job. 

He told ESPN FC in an exclusive interview: "I think the best way...