Inconsoable members of the Italian national team, the Azzuri, after losing out on WC qualification

Italy is one of the most successful national teams in the history of the World Cup, having won four titles behind Brazil which is a five-time winner.

However, the Azzuri, the 2006 World champions won’t appear at the 2018 World Cup for the first time since 1958 after they were held to a goalless draw by Sweden, losing 1-0 on aggregate after the two legs.

Jakob Johansson’s first-leg deflected winner was enough to send the Swedes to Russia.

Italy joins the 2010 runners up Netherlands, Chile and USA who also missed out on the major tournament from the qualifying group stages.

Twenty nine out of the 32 teams have already been confirmed in the tournament and the remaining three will be known by tomorrow after the second leg play-off ties.

Peru will face New Zealand in the second leg after a 0-0 draw in the first leg of their 2018 World Cup finals intercontinental playoff at Wellington Regional stadium on Saturday.

The Peruvians are under immense pressure to advance to next year’s finals for the first time since 1982.

Republic of Ireland host Denmark in the second leg for a final place left for teams from Europe. The first leg also ended in a goalless draw in Denmark.

Australia take on Honduras in the second leg following a 0-0 draw in the first leg to confirm a team from the Oceania region.

The final draw for the tournament will be held in Moscow on Friday 1 December.

Qualified teams:

Africa: Nigeria, Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia, Senegal.

Europe: Russia (hosts), Belgium, Germany, England, Spain, Poland, Serbia, Iceland, France, Portugal, Sweden, Switzerland, Croatia

South America: Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Colombia.

North, Central America and Caribbean: Costa Rica, Mexico, Panama.

Asia: Iran, Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia.

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