It's likely to be less crowded onstage at the next Republican presidential debate, scheduled for Jan. 14  on Fox Business Network. The criteria for the prime-time portion will be more selective, Politico reported.

The criteria could prevent three candidates -- Ohio Gov. John Kasich, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul -- from receiving initiations to appear on the main stage. Fox Business Network will decide the lineup based on national polls and those in the two states hosting the earliest 2016 primaries. The main stage will include only those candidates who rank among the top six in an average of the five most recent national polls, or the top five in the five most recent polls in New Hampshire and Iowa, Politico reported. 

The network also will look at polls released before Jan. 11 at 6 p.m. EST. Politico crunched the numbers, and predicted that based on recent national polling numbers, the main event will feature businessman Donald Trump, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz,  Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie. Nine candidates appeared in the Dec. 15 Las Vegas debate hosted by CNN. 

To appear in the undercard debate next month, candidates need to garner at least 1 percent in one of the five most recent national polls.

The Fox Business Network debate will be held at the North Charleston Coliseum and Performing Arts Center in North Charleston, South Carolina. It will be the first presidential debate of 2016.