Belgium v Colombia - International Friendly

Can’t miss qualifiers, friendlies as Brazil beckons

Uruguay and Mexico got the final 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifying matches off to a flying start on Wednesday with dominant wins to put one foot each into the finals, while Colombia emerged with the victory and statement of class against Belgium on Thursday in a friendly matchup between two trendy picks to make waves next summer.

Today marks the beginning of the meat on the international break sandwich. Eight European teams will do battle—playing the first leg of two, the second of which comes Tuesday—in the race for the final four World Cup™ spots afforded to the soccer-rich continent.

The showpiece comes when Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal host Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Sweden as the world sweats on which global star will miss out on soccer’s highly anticipated carnival. Iceland, pitted against Croatia, also has the chance to become the smallest national population wise—320,000 live there—to reach the finals

Friendlies between Brazil-bound teams also move the meter today with Italy hosting Germany in tilt of titans and Ecuador taking on Argentina. The Germans and Argentinians are expected to debut new adidas jerseys that launched earlier this week. You can find them at SOCCER.COM along with the winning shirts worn by Mexico and Colombia.

Saturday gives four African teams the chance to pursue World Cup™ dreams with Nigeria and Ivory Coast coming into the contests with advantages from the first leg. Brazil will play Honduras in Miami, while Japan and Spain also should sport new adidas shirts in friendly play.

Come Tuesday night, we’ll know the 32 teams that will feature in the FIFA World Cup™ finals and have a better idea of who the managers might pick to take the field.

All of the matches of note, from the U.S. Men’s National Teams’ two tune-ups against Scotland and Austria to England’s experiments with Chile and Germany and all the rest of the international action of note is below.

Find all the replica and lifestyle gear you need to root on your country at SOCCER.com.

  • Friday, Nov. 15

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifying: UEFA Playoffs, Leg 1

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo (L) and Swe

Iceland v Croatia, 2 p.m. ET, Laugardalsvollur, Reykjavik, Iceland

Greece v Romania, 2:45 p.m. ET, Karaiskaki Stadium, Athens, Greece

Portugal v Sweden, 2:45 p.m. ET, Estadio Da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal

Ukraine v France, Kiev Olympic Stadium, Kiev, Ukraine

International Friendlies

Russia v Serbia, 11:30 a.m. ET, Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia

Denmark v Norway, 1 p.m. ET, MCH Arena, Herning, Denmark

Italy v Germany, 2:45 p.m. ET, San Siro, Italy

England v Chile, 3 p.m. ET, Wembley, London, England

Scotland v USA, 3:05 p.m. ET, Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland

Argentina v Ecuador, 8 p.m. ET, Metlife Stadium, East Rutherford, New Jersey

  • Saturday, Nov. 16

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifiers: AFC Playoffs, Leg 2

FBL-WC2014-CIV-SEN

Nigeria v Ethiopia, 10 a.m. ET, U.J Esuene Stadium, Calabar, Nigeria (Nigeria leads 2-1 on aggregate)

Senegal v Ivory Coast, 2 p.m. ET, Stade Mohamed V, Casablanca Morocco (Ivory Coast leads 3-1)

International Friendlies

Japan v Holland, 7:15 a.m. ET, Cristal Arena, Genk, Belgium

Equatorial Guinea v Spain, 4 p.m. ET, Nuevo Estadio De Malabo, Malabo, Equatorial Guinea

Brazil v Honduras, 7:30 p.m. ET, Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida

  • Sunday, Nov. 17

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifiers: AFC Playoffs, Leg 2

FBL-WC2014-TUN-CAM

Cameroon v Tunisia, 9 a.m., ET, Ahmadou Ahidjo Stadium, Yaounde, Cameroon (0-0 on aggregate)

  • Monday, Nov. 18

International Friendlies

Italy Training Session & Press Conference

Italy v Nigeria, 2:45 p.m. ET, Craven Cottage, London, England

Argentina v Bosnia-Herzegovina, 8:30 p.m. ET, Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri

  • Tuesday, Nov. 19

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifying: UEFA Playoffs, Leg 2

FBL-WC2014-UKR-FRA-TRAINING

Romania v Greece, 2 p.m. ET, National Arena, Bucharest, Romania

Croatia v Iceland, 2:15 p.m. ET, Maksimir Stadium, Zagred, Croatia

Sweden v Portugal, 2:45 p.m. ET, Friends Arena, Stockholm, Sweden

France v Ukraine, 3 p.m. ET, Stade De France, Saint-Denis, France

2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil™ Qualifiers: AFC Playoffs, Leg 2

FBL-WC2014-GHA-EGY

Egypt v Ghana, 11 a.m. ET, Cairo International Stadium, Cairo, Egypt (Ghana leads 6-1)

Algeria v Burkina Faso, 1:15 a.m. ET, Stade Mustapha Tchaker, Blida, Algeria (Burkina Faso leads 3-2)

International Friendlies

Russia v South Korea, 9 a.m. ET, Luzhniki Stadium, Moscow, Russia

Belgium v Japan, 3 p.m. ET, Koning Boudewijn Stadion, Brussels, Belgium

Australia v Costa Rica, 3:30 a.m. ET, Sydney Football Stadium, Sydney, Australia

Austria v United States, 2 p.m. ET, Ernst Happel Stadium, Vienna, Austria

South Africa v Spain, 2 p.m. ET, FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, South Africa

Holland v Colombia, 2:30 p.m. ET, Amsterdam Arena, Holland

England v Germany, 3:00 p.m. ET, Wembley Stadium, London, England

Brazil v Chile, 8 p.m. ET, Rogers Centre, Toronto, Canada

What’s your must-watch match of the international break? Let us know in the comments section below.