UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying play-offs

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The play-offs of the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying tournament decided the last three teams that qualified for the UEFA Euro 2024 final tournament in Germany. The twelve participants of the play-offs were selected based on their performance in the 2022–23 UEFA Nations League. The teams were divided into three paths, each containing four teams, with each play-off path featuring two single-leg semi-finals, and one single-leg final. The three play-off path winners joined hosts Germany and the twenty other teams already qualified for UEFA Euro 2024.

Format

The twelve teams were selected based on their performance in the 2022–23 UEFA Nations League. These teams were divided into three paths, each containing four teams, with one team from each path qualifying for the final tournament.

The format was similar to that of the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying play-offs. However, given there was one fewer qualifying spot available (as no host qualified automatically for Euro 2020), and the UEFA Nations League was restructured from the 2018–19 season, the play-offs now featured only three paths, with the now-downsized League D no longer given its own path.

Team selection

Based on the Nations League rankings, the twelve selected teams were chosen as follows, starting with League C and working up to League A:

  1. All available group winners were selected.
  2. If a group winner had directly qualified through the UEFA Euro 2024 qualifying group stage, then they were replaced by the next best-ranked team from the same league that had not also directly qualified.
  3. If fewer than four teams from a given league had failed to qualify, then the remaining slots for that league were allocated as follows:
    1. The best-ranked League D group winner would be selected unless this team had directly qualified.
    2. Any remaining slots would be allocated based on the Nations League overall ranking:
      • If the league had a group winner selected for the play-offs, then the next-best team in the overall ranking from a lower league was selected.
      • If the league had no group winner available, then the best team in the overall ranking was selected.

Path formation

The twelve selected teams were then allocated to paths of four teams each. The draw to allocate teams to the different paths was subject to the following general conditions:

With these conditions, the general draw procedure was as follows, starting with League C and working up to League A:

Match pairings and rules

Each play-off path featured two single-leg semi-finals, and one single-leg final, taking place in March 2024. In the semi-finals of each path, based on the Nations League rankings, the best-ranked team hosted the fourth-ranked team, and the second-ranked team hosted the third-ranked team. The host of each final was decided by a draw between the two semi-final pairings.

The play-offs were played in single-leg knockout matches. If scores were level at the end of normal time, 30 minutes of extra time were played, followed by a penalty shoot-out if the scores remained level.

Teams selected

The team selection process, using a set of criteria, determined the twelve teams that would compete in the play-offs based on the Nations League overall rankings.

League A
Rank Team
1 GW  Spain
2 GW  Croatia
3 GW  Italy
4 GW  Netherlands
5  Denmark
6  Portugal
7  Belgium
8  Hungary
9   Switzerland
10  Germany
11  Poland
12  France
13  Austria
14  Czech Republic
15  England
16  Wales
League B
Rank Team
17 GW  Israel
18 GW  Bosnia and Herzegovina
19 GW  Serbia
20 GW  Scotland
21  Finland
22  Ukraine
23  Iceland
24  Norway
25  Slovenia
26  Republic of Ireland
27  Albania
28  Montenegro
29  Romania
30  Sweden
31  Armenia
32  Russia
League C
Rank Team
33 GW  Georgia
34 GW  Greece
35 GW  Turkey
36 GW  Kazakhstan
37  Luxembourg
38  Azerbaijan
39  Kosovo
40  Bulgaria
41  Faroe Islands
42  North Macedonia
43  Slovakia
44  Northern Ireland
45  Cyprus
46  Belarus
47  Lithuania
48  Gibraltar
League D
Rank Team
49 BD  Estonia
50  Latvia
51  Moldova
52  Malta
53  Andorra
54  San Marino
55  Liechtenstein

Key

Draw

The qualifying play-off draw took place on 23 November 2023, 12:00 CET, at the UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland. The draw followed the path formation rules to determine the paths in which the non-group winners will participate. Three separate draws determining the host of the play-off final of each path also took place between the winners of the semi-final pairings (identified as semi-final 1 for seed 1 v 4, and semi-final 2 for seed 2 v 3).

Due to the specificity of the draw, the exact procedure could only be finalised following the conclusion of the qualifying group stage. No restrictions were applied to the draw, as none of the clashes prohibited by UEFA for political reasons could occur. Based on the twelve teams that advanced to the play-offs, the three play-off paths were formed following the path formation rules, starting with League C and working up to League A:

The following three non-group winners from League B (ordered by Nations League ranking) took part in the draw, with two being drawn into Path B, while the remaining team was allocated to Path A:

The two teams drawn into Path B occupied positions B3 and B4, following their Nations League ranking, while the team drawn into Path A occupied position A3.

The following was the composition of the play-off paths:

Path A
Rank Team
11  Poland
16  Wales
21  Finland
49  Estonia
Path B
Rank Team
17  Israel
18  Bosnia and Herzegovina
22  Ukraine
23  Iceland
Path C
Rank Team
33  Georgia
34  Greece
36  Kazakhstan
37  Luxembourg

In the semi-finals of each path, the best-ranked team hosted the fourth-ranked team, and the second-ranked team hosted the third-ranked team.

The following semi-final winners were drawn to host the play-off final:

Schedule

The semi-finals took place on 21 March, while the final matches took place five days later on 26 March 2024. The losing semi-finalists in each path still competed in a friendly on the day of the final, hosted by the team that was drawn to hold the play-off final. However, the friendly match between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Israel was cancelled by both Federations and UEFA due to security reasons related to the Israel–Hamas war.

Times are CET (UTC+1), as listed by UEFA (local times are in parentheses).

Path A

The winner of Path A, Poland, entered Group D in the final tournament.

Bracket

 Semi-finalsFinal
       
 21 March 2024 – Cardiff
 
  Wales4
 26 March 2024 – Cardiff
  Finland1
  Wales0 (4)
 21 March 2024 – Warsaw
  Poland (p)0 (5)
  Poland5
 
  Estonia1
 

Semi-finals

21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)20:45
Poland 5–1 Estonia
Report
Stadion Narodowy, WarsawAttendance: 53,868Referee: Slavko Vinčić (Slovenia) 21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)20:45 (19:45 UTC+0)
Wales 4–1 Finland
Report
Cardiff City Stadium, CardiffAttendance: 32,162Referee: István Kovács (Romania)

Final

26 March 2024 (2024-03-26)20:45 (19:45 UTC+0)
Wales 0–0 (a.e.t.) Poland
Report
Penalties
4–5
Cardiff City Stadium, CardiffAttendance: 31,876Referee: Daniele Orsato (Italy)

Path B

The winner of Path B, Ukraine, entered Group E in the final tournament.

Bracket

 Semi-finalsFinal
       
 21 March 2024 – Zenica
 
  Bosnia and Herzegovina1
 26 March 2024 – Wrocław
  Ukraine2
  Ukraine2
 21 March 2024 – Budapest
  Iceland1
  Israel1
 
  Iceland4
 

Semi-finals

21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)20:45
Israel 1–4 Iceland
Report
Szusza Ferenc Stadion, Budapest (Hungary)Attendance: 1,226Referee: Anthony Taylor (England) 21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)20:45
Bosnia and Herzegovina 1–2 Ukraine
Report
Bilino Polje Stadium, ZenicaAttendance: 10,992Referee: Felix Zwayer (Germany)

Final

26 March 2024 (2024-03-26)20:45
Ukraine 2–1 Iceland
Report
Wrocław Stadium, Wrocław (Poland)Attendance: 29,310Referee: Clément Turpin (France)

Path C

The winner of Path C, Georgia, entered Group F in the final tournament.

Bracket

 Semi-finalsFinal
       
 21 March 2024 – Tbilisi
 
  Georgia2
 26 March 2024 – Tbilisi
  Luxembourg0
  Georgia (p)0 (4)
 21 March 2024 – Athens
  Greece0 (2)
  Greece5
 
  Kazakhstan0
 

Semi-finals

21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)18:00 (21:00 UTC+4)
Georgia 2–0 Luxembourg
Report
Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena, TbilisiAttendance: 51,404Referee: José María Sánchez Martínez (Spain) 21 March 2024 (2024-03-21)20:45 (21:45 UTC+2)
Greece 5–0 Kazakhstan
Report
Agia Sophia Stadium, AthensAttendance: 25,200Referee: Danny Makkelie (Netherlands)

Final

26 March 2024 (2024-03-26)18:00 (21:00 UTC+4)
Georgia 0–0 (a.e.t.) Greece
Report
Penalties
4–2
Boris Paichadze Dinamo Arena, TbilisiAttendance: 44,000Referee: Szymon Marciniak (Poland)

Goalscorers

There were 29 goals scored in 9 matches, for an average of 3.22 goals per match.

4 goals

2 goals

1 goal

1 own goal

Discipline

A player was automatically suspended for the next match for the following offences:

Cautions that did not result in a suspension expired on completion of the qualifying group stage, and were not carried forward to the play-offs.

The following suspensions were served during the qualifying play-offs:

Team Player Offence(s) Suspended for match(es)
 Bosnia and Herzegovina Renato Gojković Yellow card Yellow-red card in Group J vs Slovakia (19 November 2023) Semi-finals vs Ukraine (21 March 2024)
 Estonia Maksim Paskotši Red card in Semi-finals vs Poland (21 March 2024) Potential final vs Finland or Wales (26 March 2024)
 Georgia Khvicha Kvaratskhelia Yellow card in Group A vs Spain (8 September 2023)
Yellow card in Group A vs Scotland (16 November 2023)
Yellow card in Group A vs Spain (19 November 2023)
Semi-finals vs Luxembourg (21 March 2024)
Giorgi Loria Red card in Finals vs Greece (26 March 2024) Group F (main tournament) vs Turkey (matchday 1; 18 June 2024)
 Israel Roy Revivo Red card in Semi-finals vs Iceland (21 March 2024) Potential final vs Bosnia and Herzegovina or Ukraine (26 March 2024)
 Kazakhstan Nuraly Alip Yellow card in Group H vs Northern Ireland (19 June 2023)
Yellow card in Group H vs Denmark (14 October 2023)
Yellow card in Group H vs Slovenia (20 November 2023)
Semi-finals vs Greece (21 March 2024)
 Luxembourg Danel Sinani Red card in Group J vs Liechtenstein (19 November 2023) Semi-finals vs Georgia (21 March 2024)
Potential final vs Greece or Kazakhstan (26 March 2024)
Maxime Chanot Red card in Semi-finals vs Georgia (21 March 2024) Potential final vs Greece or Kazakhstan (26 March 2024)

Notes

  1. ^ The restriction would have applied to the following pairings: Armenia–Azerbaijan, Belarus–Ukraine, Gibraltar–Spain, Kosovo–Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo–Serbia.
  2. ^ Due to the Israel–Hamas war, Israel were required to play their home matches at neutral venues until further notice.
  3. ^ Due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Ukraine were required to play their home matches at neutral venues until further notice.
  4. ^ a b c d As the team was eliminated, the suspension was served outside the tournament.

References

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  5. ^ "UNL Media Briefing" (PDF). Union of European Football Associations. 20 September 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 September 2018. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  6. ^ "Overall ranking of the 2022/23 UEFA Nations League" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 27 September 2022. Retrieved 28 September 2022.
  7. ^ "UEFA EURO 2024 play-off draw". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. Retrieved 23 November 2023.
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  10. ^ "European Qualifiers 2022-24 – Play-off draw procedure (Executive Committee version)" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 28 June 2023. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
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  12. ^ "European Qualifiers: How the play-offs are shaping up". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 16 November 2023. Retrieved 18 November 2023.
  13. ^ "EURO 2024 Play-offs: Details on when and how to get your tickets". Football Association of Wales. 7 December 2023. Retrieved 27 December 2023.
  14. ^ https://apnews.com/article/israel-bosnia-game-canceled-c4da69002a1f3b7461a78a05098db682
  15. ^ "European Qualifiers 2022–24 – Play-offs – Fixture List" (PDF). Union of European Football Associations. 23 November 2023. Retrieved 23 November 2023.
  16. ^ "Poland vs. Estonia" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  17. ^ "Wales vs. Finland" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  18. ^ "Wales vs. Poland" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 26 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  19. ^ "European Qualifier match between Belgium and Sweden declared abandoned with half-time result confirmed as final". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 19 October 2023. Retrieved 23 November 2023.
  20. ^ "Israel vs. Iceland" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  21. ^ "Bosnia and Herzegovina vs. Ukraine" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  22. ^ "Decisions from today's extraordinary UEFA Executive Committee meeting". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 25 February 2022. Retrieved 25 February 2022.
  23. ^ "Ukraine vs. Iceland" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 26 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  24. ^ "Georgia vs. Luxembourg" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  25. ^ "Greece vs. Kazakhstan" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 21 March 2024. Retrieved 21 March 2024.
  26. ^ "Georgia vs. Greece" (JSON). Union of European Football Associations. 26 March 2024. Retrieved 26 March 2024.
  27. ^ "European Championship 2024: Booking List before Play-off Semi-finals" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 11 March 2024. Archived (PDF) from the original on 11 March 2024. Retrieved 11 March 2024.

External links