Argentina's Lionel Messi reacts during a World Cup qualifying soccer match against Peru at La Bombonera stadium in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Thursday, Oct. 5, 2017.

England and Germany Make It to World Cup in Russia, but Argentina Are Struggling

© AP Photo / Victor R. Caivano
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England and Germany qualified for next year's World Cup in Russia by virtue of wins on Thursday night, October 5. But two-time winners Argentina drew in Peru and are now in great danger of missing out on the tournament altogether.

England and Germany secured their place in next year's World Cup in Russia with victories over Slovenia and Northern Ireland respectively.

But Argentina, who won the World Cup in 1978 and 1986, were held to a goalless draw at home by Peru and are now seriously struggling to make it to Russia.

If they do not win their final game against Ecuador the Argentinians will fail to qualify for the first time since 1970.

Even if they do win that match the best they can hope for is a play-off with New Zealand, which they should win despite an off-color qualifying campaign.  

Peruvians danced in the streets of Lima as they watched the national team on giant TV screens.

Peru will qualify for the World Cup for the first time since 1982 if they can defeat Colombia at home on Tuesday, October 10.

Striker Harry Kane scored the only goal for England, in injury time, to finally overcome Slovenia, who are ranked only 55th in the world.

"This team has potential but we have a hell of a lot of work to do. It's blindingly obvious we could have played better — but we are there," England manager Gareth Southgate said after the match.

Germany, who are the holders having won the trophy in Brazil in 2014, strolled to a 3-1 victory in Belfast and will be the favorites to retain the World Cup in Moscow in July.

Scotland's slim chances of making it to Russia improved with a very late winning goal against Slovakia, who had a man sent off.

And Syria still stand a chance of making it to the World Cup.

Striker Omar Al Somah scored a late penalty as the Syrians drew 1-1 with Australia in the first leg of their play-off against Australia.

The second leg is in Sydney on Tuesday, October 10.

Tickets have gone on sale for the first sales phase of the World Cup and Fifa's website is expected to be busy this weekend as England and Germany fans buy tickets.

A draw will take place next week to decide who has been successful with their application for tickets.

By then it will be clear who has won the European and African groups and who will have to go into play-offs.

On Friday night, October 6, Ukraine play Croatia in the final match of their group. Both teams can still qualify from that group, as can Turkey and Iceland who are playing each other.

More tickets will go on sale on November 16 on a first come first served basis.

The play-off matches take place in November and all the 32 teams who have made it by the time of the World Cup draw in Moscow on December 1.

Four days after that another set of tickets will go on sale and a final batch will go on sale in March.

The Russian government is determined the World Cup will pass off smoothly and peacefully and will be putting in high security for the duration of the tournament.

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