Ronaldo, Diego Forlan, Fabio Cannavaro, Samuel Eto'o, Oliver Bierhoff, Rinat Dasaev and Alexander Kerzhakov. This is the line-up of football icons who will assist the FIFA Secretary General, Jérôme Valcke, in deciding the fates of teams from five of the six confederations participating in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers. This team will also be joined by the captain of the 2015 FIFA U-20 World Cup winning team – Predrag Rajkovic, from Serbia – and by the captain of the 2015 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup winning team, which will be known tomorrow.

In just one week, the iconic Konstantin Palace in Saint Petersburg will host the first official event of the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The Preliminary Draw scheduled to 25 July at 18.00 local time (17.00 CET) will not only reveal what lies ahead for the teams seeking a coveted spot in the final stage in Russia, but also provide football fans worldwide with a glimpse of Russia’s rich culture and music.