EURO 2020 play-offs: All you need to know

What are the play-offs?

Sixteen teams will battle it out for the four remaining UEFA EURO 2020 places in the competition’s new-look play-offs. When completed, we will know all 24 finalists, and all the EURO 2020 group fixtures.

Who plays who, when and where?

Fixtures were determined by a series of draws in November. The teams listed first will host the matches, including finals­ – i.e. the winner of the Bulgaria/Hungary tie will stage the Path A final.

Following a decision made by the UEFA Executive Committee, the European Qualifiers Play-Offs semi-finals will take place on 8 October with the finals to follow on 12 November.

Play-off semi-finals

Path A: Bulgaria v Hungary (20:45), Iceland v Romania (20:45),
Path B: Bosnia and Herzegovina v Northern Ireland (20:45), Slovakia v Republic of Ireland (20:45)
Path C: Norway v Serbia (20:45), Scotland v Israel (20:45) 
Path D: Georgia v Belarus (18:00), North Macedonia v Kosovo (20:45) 

Play-off finals

Path A: Bulgaria/Hungary v Iceland/Romania (20:45) 
Path B: Bosnia and Herzegovina/Northern Ireland v Slovakia/Republic of Ireland (20:45)
Path C: Norway/Serbia v Scotland/Israel (TBC)
Path D: Georgia/Belarus v North Macedonia/Kosovo (18:00)

Are the play-offs new?

There have been play-offs for five of the last six EUROs, starting with a one-off match between the Netherlands and the Republic of Ireland at Anfield for EURO ’96. The UEFA EURO 2020 play-offs have a very different format, though. For the first time, teams must come through more than one round and, unlike all previous editions, sides have qualified to participate via the UEFA Nations League rather than the European Qualifiers.

How do the play-offs work?

The 16 UEFA Nations League group winners were guaranteed play-off places before the European Qualifiers. If they advanced via their qualifying groups, their spot went to the next best-ranked team in their league. Where a league did not have four teams to compete (such as League A), remaining slots were allocated to teams from another league, according to the overall UEFA Nations League rankings.).

Do teams know who they will potentially play in the EURO finals?

Teams in Paths B and C know:

• Path B winners go to Group E alongside Spain, Sweden, Poland
• Path C winners go to Group D alongside England, Croatia, Czech Republic

Paths A and D are more complicated.

If Romania qualify as Path A winners:

• Romania would go to Group C alongside Netherlands, Ukraine, Austria
• Path D winners would go to Group F alongside Portugal, France, Germany

If Bulgaria, Hungary or Iceland qualify as Path A winners:

• Path A winners would go to Group F alongside Portugal, France, Germany
• Path D winners would go to Group C alongside Netherlands, Ukraine, Austria

EURO play-off ties to date

1996: Republic of Ireland 0–2 Netherlands, Anfield
2000: Scotland 1–2agg England (0–2 1–0)
2000: Israel 0–8agg Denmark (0–5 0–3)
2000: Slovenia 3–2agg Ukraine (2–1 1–1)
2000: Republic of Ireland…

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