Celeb picks for Caltex Socceroos' FIFA World Cup draw

The countdown to the FIFA World Cup draw is almost over and we will soon know which nations the Caltex Socceroos will face in Russia.

In the early hours of Saturday morning (AEDT), Australia will be drawn into one eight groups for the greatest sporting festival on the planet.

We've turned to Australia's football identities to get their thoughts on ideal opponents.

Here are the teams Optus Sport presenter and producer Richard Bayliss is keen to see the Caltex Socceroos take on.


Imagine facing hosts Russia in the opening match in Moscow!

It would surely be the most-watched Socceroos match ever in terms of global audience.

Regardless of when you played them, Russia would be under enormous pressure to perform - a tall order given they possess an ordinary, primarily locally-based squad – so the perfect opportunity is there to make 150 million enemies in 90-odd minutes.

Russia will be the lowest-ranked team at the tournament.


Never before has the World Cup been the stage for the Socceroos to reignite a rivalry that genuinely transcends sport.

The enormity of facing England would capture the imagination across Australia more than any World Cup match before it.

And maybe the thought of losing to us might spark them into playing some decent football.

Could we beat England? Of course. It’s a major tournament.

They’ll beat themselves.

Socceroos England
England would add another layer of excitement.


Riding the wave of qualifying for the first time since 1990, Egypt’s fortunes have the potential to create one of the feel-good stories of the World Cup.

It would be nice if the Socceroos hitched their wagon to the storyline, while ending it all the same.

The exploits of lightning-fast Mohamed Salah for Liverpool this season would be an imposing prospect, but his lack of world class teammates would give us a great chance to claim three points.

Could we stop Mohamed Salah and Egypt?