On 12 June 2014, the eyes of the footballing world will be firmly fixed on Brazil, where the 2014 FIFA World Cup™ will get underway at the Arena de Sao Paulo. Between now and then, however, there is a whole host of milestones to pass, the most significant of which are as follows:

2012 - Launch of the Volunteer Programme. Around 6,000 volunteers will be selected for the FIFA Confederations Cup 2013 and another 18,000 for the 2014 FIFA World Cup. The launch will take place in the coming months on a date still to be fixed.

September 2012 - Presentation of the Official Mascot.

End of 2012 - Presentation of the Official Posters, both for the FIFA World Cup itself and for the specific host cities.

1 December 2012 - The Draw for the group phase of the FIFA Confederations Cup 2013. The event will take place in Sao Paulo, and six of the eight participating nations are already known. Present will be Brazil (as hosts), Spain (FIFA World Cup winners), Uruguay (South American champions), Mexico (North, Central America and Caribbean champions), Japan (Asian champions) and Tahiti (Oceania champions). Europe’s representative will be known on 1 July 2012 and Africa’s in February 2013.

15-30 June 2013 - FIFA Confederations Cup, the Festival of Champions.

December 2013 - Final Draw for the group phase of the 2014 FIFA World Cup. To date, only hosts Brazil are sure of a place among the 32 nations who will be competing for the title.

12 June 2014 - Opening Game of FIFA World Cup.