AN incredible day of results has turned FIFA World Cup qualifying on its head.
There will be no Russia 2018 campaign for South American champions Chile, whose 3-0 defeat to Brazil doomed them to sixth place in the CONMEBOL standings.
Also out of the picture are Paraguay, with Peru sneaking into fifth place after holding on for a 1-1 draw against Colombia.
The Incas, who have not featured at the World Cup finals since Spain 1982, will face Oceania winners New Zealand in an intercontinental playoff.
But perhaps the biggest shock of a crazy day came from the CONCACAF region, where a trio of gobsmacking results completely and utterly flipped the script.
Trinidad & Tobago were given no chance against the United States, who only needed to beat the bottom side to ensure progress to Russia.
That proved a bridge too far for the USA, however, as the Caribbean underdogs took advantage of an early own goal to claim a famous 2-1 victory.
In isolation, that outcome would have put the Americans on a collision course with Australia, who secured a playoff berth with their extra-time win over Syria on Tuesday night.
But Panama and Honduras had other ideas, claiming shock wins over Costa Rica and Mexico respectively to dump the USA out of the running altogether.
— GolazoJuice (@GolazoJuice) October 11, 2017
That means the Panamanians will join Mexico and Costa Rica in the final 32, while Honduras will battle the Socceroos over two legs for the right to progress.
Those results follow some equally stunning developments in the UEFA World Cup qualifying sector.
There was more misery for the Netherlands, who fell short in their bid to overtake Sweden on goal difference.
Once a powerhouse of European football, the Oranje have now missed both Euro 2016 and Russia 2018 since reaching the semi-finals at the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.
Heartbreak for Wales translated to jubilation for the Republic of Ireland, while Northern Ireland remain in the hunt for their first finals appearances since Mexico 1986.
England cantered through Group F, but Scotland were left stranded behind Slovakia due to an inferior goal differential.
The biggest story of all came from Iceland, who followed up their impressive Euro 2016 campaign by topping a group that featured World Cup regulars such as Croatia, Turkey and the Ukraine.
With regional qualifiers in Asia, Europe and the Americas completed, there are now only nine slots remaining for Russia 2018.
Three of those will go to the remaining CAF group winners in Africa, leaving four places for the winners of the UEFA playoffs and another two for the intercontinental combatants.
2018 FIFA World Cup outright betting
$6.50 – France
$7 – Brazil
$8 – Spain
$8.50 – Argentina
$15 – Belgium
$19 – Italy
$21 – England
$26 – Portugal
$34 – Colombia, Russia
$41 – Croatia, Uruguay
$67 – Mexico, Poland
$81 – Switzerland
$101 – Serbia
$301 – Australia
Teams already qualified for Russia 2018
Africa: Egypt, Nigeria
Asia: Iran, Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia
Europe: Russia, Belgium, England, France, Germany, Iceland, Poland, Portugal, Serbia, Spain
North America: Costa Rica, Mexico
South America: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Uruguay
Teams still in qualifying for World Cup 2018
CAF third round: Burkina Faso, Cape Verde, DR Congo, Ivory Coast, Morocco, Senegal, South Africa, Tunisia
UEFA playoffs: Croatia, Denmark, Greece, Italy, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Sweden, Switzerland
Intercontinental playoffs: Australia, Honduras, New Zealand, Peru
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