The new competition introduced by European football’s governing body has witnessed some riveting action.
As you might already know, the competition features all the 55 UEFA members and is hence, divided into four leagues named A, B, C and D. These four leagues are then divided into four groups themselves and teams are distributed into groups of three or four depending upon their ranking coefficients to avoid mismatches. The winners from groups in League A then qualify for playoffs to decide the winners.
In the first group of League A, as the table stands right now, France is leading the group with seven points, the Netherlands is at second with three points while Germany is at the bottom with just a single point. During this international break, France will play Netherlands while the Dutch will also face Germany. In order to qualify for the playoffs, France needs to win or draw its next game against Netherlands. France would also qualify for the playoffs if Germany managed to beat Netherlands. For the Dutch, to qualify for the playoffs, the equation is simple. They need to win both their games. Germany, at this point stands at no chance of qualification for the playoffs. It can, however avoid relegation if it manages to beat Germany and France beats Netherlands.
In the second group of League A, Belgium and Switzerland will play it out to decide top spot and qualification for the playoffs. Both Belgium and Switzerland stand at six points each while Iceland hasn’t opened its account yet. Belgium has the greater chances of qualification for play-offs as it will play two games. Belgium needs to avoid defeat in both games in order to qualify for play-offs. Iceland however, on the other hand, needs to beat Belgium and hope Iceland do the same. Iceland, on the other hand, is bound for relegation.
In the third group of League A, Portugal has six points from two games, Italy has four from three, whilst Poland has just a single point. As it stands, Portugal will qualify for playoffs if it manages to avoid defeat in both games against Italy and Poland. Italy will only qualify if they manage to beat Portugal and hope Poland pull off something similar. Poland can avoid relegation if Portugal beats Italy by a solid margin and they then beat Portugal, they’d then avoid relegation by virtue of goal difference.
In the fourth group of League A, Spain tops the group with six points from three games while England has four from three. Croatia, on the other hand, has just a single point but has an extra game in hand. Spain needs to beat Croatia in the next game to secure their playoff spots. For England to qualify, they need to beat Croatia and hope that Croatia beats Spain. World Cup finalists Croatia can qualify for play-offs if it wins both its next games. If Croatia wins against Spain, the game against England will decide who gets relegated and who gets promoted to the playoffs.
In the first group of League B, Ukraine has won all three games and leads the table with nine points. Czech Republic has three points while Slovakia is winless. Ukraine is guaranteed promotion to League A if Slovakia does not manage to win both its next games with a solid goal difference. If Ukraine wins its game against Slovakia, it will get promoted to League A. Czech Republic needs to beat Slovakia with a huge goal margin to avoid relegation.
In the second group of League B, dark horses from this year’s World Cup Russia leads the table seven points, Turkey has three points while Sweden has just one. Russia is sure to qualify for League A if it defeats or gets a point against Sweden. Sweden too stands a chance of promotion to League A if it wins both its next game and ends up with a better goal difference than Russia. If Turkey, however, beats Sweden, Sweden will get relegated to League C.
The situation in Group 3 in League B is exactly similar to Group 1 in League B where Bosnia and Herzegovina has nine points, Austria has three points from two games and Northern Ireland is winless. Northern Ireland has been relegated to League C. If Austria manages to beat Bosnia by a large margin or win both its games, they’ll earn promotion to League A.
In Group 4 of League B, Wales is leading the group with 6 points, Denmark has four while Ireland has one point. If Wales win the game against Denmark, it will earn promotion to League A. Denmark will win earn promotion if it wins both its games while Denmark vs Ireland game could also decide promotion or relegation for both the sides.