1962 Preliminaries
England Football Online
Contact Us Page Last Updated 28 October 2013
1970 Preliminaries

World Cup Index
Preliminary Competition
Final Tournament
Team Records
Squad Records

England: the road to England 19


Background The teams were divided into preliminary competition qualifying groups at a draw in Zürich, Switzerland on January 31, 1964.  England, as host nation, were the sole team assigned to qualifying group 10 and joined Brazil, as World Cup holders, in qualifying automatically for the final tournament.

A record 74 teams entered, and 53 took part.  

FIFA Group 10

Team P W D L F A GD Pts
England qualified as host nation

Notes While a record 74 teams entered, only 53 took part.  The 1966 World Cup caused some bitter disagreements before a ball had been kicked competitively. Sixteen African nations boycotted the tournament in protest against a 1964 FIFA ruling that required the champion team from the African zone to playoff against the winners of either the Asian or the Oceania zone in order to win a place at the finals. The Africans felt that winning their zone should have been enough in itself to merit qualification for the finals.  Despite the Africans' absence, there was another new record number of entries for the qualifying tournament, with 70 nations taking part. After all the arguments, FIFA finally ruled that ten teams from Europe would qualify, along with four from South America, one from Asia and one from North and Central America.

Following the preliminary competition, they were joined in the finals by Bulgaria, West Germany, France, Portugal, Switzerland, Hungary, the USSR, Italy, Spain, Uruguay, Chile, Argentina, Mexico and the Democratic People's Republic (DPR) of  Korea.