2018 WC: Italy, seven others to battle for remaining FOUR slots

The race for remaining  four slots in the 2018 World Cup is set to crystallize as eight teams take part in the return leg of the 2018 World Cup qualifying play-off games starting this Monday 13 November.

Sunday 12 November saw Senegal, Morocco seal their slots at expense of South Africa and Ivory Coast respectively to complete the roster for African nations.

Switzerland's 1-0 aggregate play- off win over Northern Ireland saw the Swiss safe in Russia before Croatia crushed Greece 4-1 aggregate to become the 28th nation to clinch a World Cup berth..

Italy /Sweden (Monday 13 November)

 Among those staring at exit is four-time World Champions, Italy who could miss the competitions for the first time since 1958.  The Azzuris are among the remaining eight teams fighting for play off and will need a win away to Sweden to seal their spot.  

Gian Piero Ventura's side have to overturn a 1-0 defeat in San Siro ahead of Monday's second leg  play off against Sweden. The Swiss who fancy a return to the World Cup after missing last two editions, will be looking to bank on their home advantage.

Ireland/Denmark (Tuesday 14 November)

Martin O’Neill’s side stand as firm favourites after shutting Danes out in a barren stalemate in fist leg in Copenhagen on Saturday. Any scoring draw for Denmark  will see them proceed while Ireland will look to find a win at home in Dublin.

READ: Key Battle Christian Eriksen vs James McClean

Australia/Honduras ( Wednesday 15 Nov)

After a 0-0 draw in Hinduras. Ange Postelegu's Socceroos World Cup chances remain hanging in balance with a decisive round in Sydney set to decide  their fate. Australia needs a win at home and it remains to be seen if they'll keep Honduras at bay with an away goal for the visitors likely to prove decisive.

Peru/New Zealand ( Thursday 16 Nov)

The Peruvians are searching for first appearance in World Cup since 1982 and head in to the return leg tie at home as wounded Lions after failing to break New Zealand in  dominant first leg in Welligton.

All Whites keeper was among the heroes then producing a goal-line clearance to keep them afloat for the second leg, but can they turn the tide and spring a surprise to oust the South Americans.

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