July 25, 2015

ST. PETERSBURG, Russia (AP) The latest on Saturday's World Cup qualifying draw (times are local):


5:30 p.m.

While staying silent on any ambitions to succeed Sepp Blatter as FIFA president, former French star Michael Platini is happy to discuss his work as UEFA president.

Financial Fair Play rules designed to cut club losses have been eased slightly this month to give clubs more freedom to spend on players within budget.

Platini says clubs ''want to spend more money ... but they want to spend more money they don't have, that is not so good.''

Manchester City has been spending heavily again, including 49 million pounds ($76 million) on winger Raheem Sterling from Liverpool, now that it is no longer subject to FFP restrictions.

Platini says ''if they have the money I don't care. It's not a problem, for me. If want to buy a Ferrari you need money, if you don't have, you don't have a Ferrari.''

Candidates to succeed Blatter must be nominated by five national federations by Oct. 26.


5 p.m.

Gerard Depardieu, the French actor who portrayed former FIFA president Jules Rimet in the much-panned movie ''United Passions,'' was listed as a guest by FIFA at the qualifying draw.

The film, premiered at the 2014 Cannes Film Festival, was released in North America on June 5. While it cost about $30 million to make, it grossed about $900 at the box office in its first weekend of U.S. release.


3:30 p.m.

FIFA finally released details for Saturday night's draw at Konstantin Palace, which has a television start time of 6 p.m.

The playoff draw that determines which confederations face each other for the final spots is scheduled for 6:18 p.m.

That is followed by Africa at 6:20 p.m., North and Central America and the Caribbean at 6:47 p.m., Oceania at 7:05 p.m., South America at 7:12 p.m. and Europe at 7:27 p.m.

Because South America competes as a one 10-nation group, the draw determines merely the schedule.

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