Route to the World Cup to be revealed

The wait is almost over. The road to Russia is about to begin.

A total of 141 teams will discover the path they must take to the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ on Saturday when the Preliminary Draw takes place at the Konstantin Palace in St. Petersburg at 18.00 local time (17.00 CET).

All the ingredients are in place. A spectacular draw show which highlights the delights of Russia, hosted by supermodel Natalia Vodianova and Dmitry Shepelev, will be broadcast to 164 countries and a global audience of 94.8 million.

The 2,000 guests at the Palace, which has previously played host to the G8 and G20 summits, will be treated to displays of ballet, opera and Russian music before the business of the draw begins.

Teams from Africa, North, Central America and the Caribbean, Oceania, South America and Europe will learn their fate with some of the most famous faces in world football assisting FIFA Secretary-General Jérôme Valcke.

As usual, FIFA.com is the place to follow the action. A team of dedicated editors are on-site in St. Petersburg to bring you the news and views on the draw, with our live blog beginning at 14.00 local time (13.00 CET).

The dream starts here.