"The battle for second should be tough, with Turkey, Romania and Hungary all involved. Taking into account our recent results, I think we’ve got a chance." Hungary coach Sandor Egervari
Favourites in a group featuring “four genuine football nations” according to coach Bert van Marwijk, the Netherlands cannot expect to have everything their own way.
The draw for the European zone yielded some potentially thrilling sections, with local rivalries set to be stirred and the world champions left to do battle with another winner of football's ultimate prize.
Switzerland and Slovakia seized Europe's last two automatic berths in South Africa, while Portugal, Greece, Slovenia and Ukraine made the play-offs.
Ukraine ran out 6-0 victors in Andorra to make sure of a runners-up finish in Group 6 and a play-off place at the expense of Croatia, who also won.
Switzerland, Greece, Slovakia and Slovenia head into Wednesday's final qualifiers hoping to claim the two remaining direct tickets to South Africa.