Hosts Croatia, holders Spain, and the runners-up in the last two editions – Italy and Portugal – will be in the top pot of seeds for the UEFA Futsal EURO 2012 finals draw at the Hypo Expo XXI conference centre in Zagreb from 11.30CET on 9 September.
The 12-team lineup for the tournament from 31 January to 11 February was decided on Sunday. Those contenders will be split into four groups of three by the draw, with each section containing one side from each of the seeding pots, defined by their UEFA coefficient. The hosts and holders are automatically in the first section along with former champions Italy – runners-up in 2007 but quarter-finalists in Hungary last year, when Portugal reached their first final but also lost to Spain, their third title in a row.
Russia, victors in 1999, will be joined in Pot 2 by 2010 bronze-medallists the Czech Republic, two-time runners-up Ukraine and Serbia. The other semi-finalists last year, Azerbaijan, could be the team to avoid from Pot 3, which will also contain Romania, Slovenia and first-time qualifiers Turkey.
In the group stage the top two teams in each pool will progress to the quarter-finals, after which the competition is a straight knockout.
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