Sports

England in top tier of new UEFA Nations League

England in top tier of new UEFA Nations League

With the group stages of World Cup qualifying coming to a close, UEFA have revealed the teams that will take part in each League in the 2018-19 UEFA Nations League.

At a draw on 24 January, each of the four leagues will be divided into four groups of three or four nations who will play each other home and away in the worldwide breaks from September to November next year.

Germany, Portugal, Belgium and Spain are the top seeds and can not play each other, with France, England, Switzerland and Italy in pot 2.

The group matches will be played in September, October and November next year.

The four-division format means that one of Europe's 16 lowest-ranked teams is guaranteed to qualify for the Euros.

The top three leagues will see four teams relegated, meaning that it could be an advantage for teams to be demoted to a weaker division before the second edition, with possible 2022 World Cup places at stake.

Promotion and relegation will be part of the competition so the four group winners will be promoted to League A with the four teams who finish last in the groups relegated to League C. There will be a normal qualifying competition, with two teams going through from each group.

League B: Austria, Wales, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine, Republic of Ireland, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Northern Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic, Turkey.

League C will be made up of three groups of four teams and one group of three.

League C: Hungary, Romania, Scotland, Slovenia, Greece, Serbia, Albania, Norway, Montenegro, Israel, Bulgaria, Finland, Cyprus, Estonia, Lithuania.

League A will consist of the 12 top-ranked teams.

The new UEFA Nations League stems from the desire of UEFA and its 55 member associations to improve the quality and standing of national team football.

Teams will be split into one group of three and three groups of four.

Division D: Azerbaijan, Macedonia, Georgia, Belarus, Armenia, Faroe Islands, Latvia, Luxembourg, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Liechtenstein, Malta, Kosovo, Andorra, San Marino and Gibraltar.

Teams will be drawn into four groups of four.

The Euro 2020 qualification play-offs are set for March 2020 as mentioned above, and Euro 2020 itself, which will be played across the continent, will begin three months later.


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