1958 FIFA World Cup Qualification
Tournament details
Dates30 September 1956 - 5 February 1958
Teams55 (from 6 confederations)
Tournament statistics
Matches played89
Goals scored341 (3.83 per match)
Top scorer(s)England Tommy Taylor (8 goals)
1954
1962

A total of 55 teams entered the 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification rounds, competing for a total of 16 spots in the final tournament. Sweden as the hosts and West Germany, as the defending champions, qualified automatically, leaving 14 spots open for competition.

Qualification Process

The qualification rounds for the four previous World Cups differed widely, with controversial rules and many withdrawals. From this tournament onwards, FIFA divided the teams into several continental zones, assigned a pre-determined number of places in the final tournament to each zone, and delegated the organisation of the qualifying tournaments to its confederations: UEFA of Europe, CONMEBOL of South America, NAFC of North America, CCCF of Central America and Caribbean, CAF of Africa and AFC of Asia (and OFC of Oceania after it was formed later).

The 16 spots available in the 1958 World Cup would be distributed among the continental zones as follows:

However, FIFA also imposed a rule that no team would qualify without playing at least one match because many teams qualified for previous World Cups without playing due to withdrawals of their opponents. Because Israel won the African and Asian zone under this circumstance, FIFA required them to enter a play-off against a team from Europe who initially did not qualify, with the winner of this play-off qualifying. Therefore, effectively in the end, a total of 11.5 places were granted to Europe while only 0.5 places were granted to Africa and Asia.

A total of 46 teams played at least one qualifying match. A total of 89 qualifying matches were played, and 341 goals were scored (an average of 3.83 per match).

Listed below are the dates and results of the qualification rounds.

Confederation Qualification

Africa and Asia

Main article: 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification (Africa and Asia)

Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Indonesia 2 2
2  China PR 2 2
Source: [1]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Israel 0 0
2  Turkey 0 0
Source: [2]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Egypt 0 0
2  Cyprus 0 0
Source: [3]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Sudan 2 3
2  Syria 2 1
Source: [1]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Israel 0 0
2  Sudan 0 0
3  Egypt 0 0
4  Indonesia 0 0
Source: [2]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Israel 0 0
2  Sudan 0 0
Source: [2]

Europe

Main article: 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification (UEFA)

The 27 teams were divided into 9 groups, each featuring 3 teams. The teams played against each other on a home-and-away basis. The group winners would qualify. Denmark, East Germany, Iceland and the Soviet Union made their debuts in World Cup qualification.

Group 1 Group 2 Group 3
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  England 4 7
2  Republic of Ireland 4 5
3  Denmark 4 0
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  France 4 7
2  Belgium 4 5
3  Iceland 4 0
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Hungary 4 6
2  Bulgaria 4 4
3  Norway 4 2
Group 4 Group 5 Group 6
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Czechoslovakia 4 6
2  Wales 4 4
3  East Germany 4 2
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Austria 4 7
2  Netherlands 4 5
3  Luxembourg 4 0
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Soviet Union 4 6
2  Poland 4 6
3  Finland 4 0
Group 7 Group 8 Group 9
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Yugoslavia 4 6
2  Romania 4 5
3  Greece 4 1
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Northern Ireland 4 5
2  Italy 4 4
3  Portugal 4 3
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Scotland 4 6
2  Spain 4 5
3   Switzerland 4 1

North, Central America and Caribbean

Main article: 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification (North, Central America and Caribbean)

The 6 teams were divided into 2 groups with 3 teams each (Group 1 with teams from North America and Group 2 with teams from Central America and Caribbean). The teams played each other on a home-and-away basis. The group winners advanced to the Final Round. The two teams played against each other on a home-and-away basis with the winner qualifying for the final tournament.

Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Mexico 4 8
2  Canada 4 4
3  United States 4 0
Source:[citation needed]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Costa Rica 4 8
2  Curaçao 3 2
3  Guatemala 3 0
Source:[citation needed]
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Mexico 2 3
2  Costa Rica 2 1
Source: FIFA

South America

The 9 teams were divided into 3 groups of 3 teams each. The teams played against each other on a home-and-away basis. The group winners would qualify.

Group 1 Group 2 Group 3
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Brazil 2 3
2  Peru 2 1
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Argentina 4 6
2  Bolivia 4 4
3  Chile 4 2
Pos Team Pld Pts
1  Paraguay 4 6
2  Uruguay 4 5
3  Colombia 4 1

Inter-confederation play-offs: CAF/AFC v UEFA

Main article: 1958 FIFA World Cup qualification (CAF/AFC–UEFA play-off)

A special play-off was created between Israel and the runner-up of one of the UEFA/CONMEBOL/CCCF/NAFC Groups, where the teams played against each other on a home-and-away basis, with the winner qualifying. Two-time champions Uruguay withdrew, while Northern Ireland and Italy had one final match yet to play, so all three were left out. Belgium, Bulgaria, Wales, Netherlands, Poland, Romania, Spain, Peru, Bolivia and Costa Rica were left to draw. After Belgium refused, Wales, the runner-up of UEFA Group 4, was the team drawn from the UEFA group runners-up.[4]

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification Wales Israel
1  Wales 2 2 0 0 4 0 +4 4 Qualification to 1958 FIFA World Cup 2–0
2  Israel 2 0 0 2 0 4 −4 0 0–2
Source: FIFA

Qualified teams

Qualifying countries
Qualifying countries
Team Date of qualification Finals appearance Streak Last appearance
 Argentina 27 October 1957 3rd 1 1934
 Austria 29 September 1957 3rd 2 1954
 Brazil 21 April 1957 6th 6 1954
 Czechoslovakia 27 October 1957 4th 2 1954
 England 19 May 1957 3rd 3 1954
 France 27 October 1957 5th 2 1954
 Hungary 10 November 1957 4th 2 1954
 Mexico 27 October 1957 4th 3 1954
 Northern Ireland 15 January 1958 1st 1
 Paraguay 14 July 1957 3rd 1 1950
 Scotland 6 November 1957 2nd 2 1954
 Sweden (Hosts) 23 June 1950 4th 1 1950
 Soviet Union 24 November 1957 1st 1
 Wales 5 February 1958 1st 1
 West Germany (Defending Champions) 4 July 1954 4th 2 1954
 Yugoslavia 17 November 1957 4th 3 1954

Goalscorers

8 goals
7 goals
5 goals
4 goals
3 goals
2 goals
1 goal
1 own goal

See also

Notes

Footnotes

  1. ^ a b "Sweden 1958 Preliminaries (CAF/AFC)". FIFA. Archived from the original on 11 December 2005. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
  2. ^ a b c Spencer, Pete (5 March 2022). "Israel's gameless 1958 World Cup qualifying campaign: how Wales' stopped the madness". Football Pink. Archived from the original on 5 March 2022. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
  3. ^ "The bizarre twists of fate behind 1958 World Cup Qualification". FC Cymru. Archived from the original on 30 March 2021. Retrieved 12 March 2022.
  4. ^ Doyle, Paul. "The Joy of Six: international football play-offs". The Guardian. Retrieved 13 November 2015.