This week's UEFA EURO 2008™ qualifiers have moved several teams to within touching distance of next summer's finals, but with games still left in October and November, so far all that can be said for sure is that co-hosts Austria and Switzerland will be there. uefa.com examines the seven groups, each of which carry two qualifying places.
Poland drew in Portugal and Finland this week to maintain first place. Finland are two points behind but the same distance ahead of Portugal after they conceded a late equaliser on Wednesday at home to Serbia. That team are a further point back, though both the Portugal and Serbia have four games left rather than three in the sole eight-nation group. On 13 October Poland welcome Kazakhstan, Portugal visit bottom side Azerbaijan, Finland visit fifth-placed Belgium and Serbia go to Armenia.
Scotland's stunning 1-0 win in France took them to the top of the group, one point ahead of Italy following their 2-1 triumph in Ukraine. France, whose only two defeats have been inflicted by Scotland, are a further point back, with Ukraine six more adrift though they have a game in hand. Scotland play Ukraine on 13 October, as Italy meet Georgia and France go to the Faroe Islands. Italy's trip to Scotland on 17 November is the only remaining meeting of the top three.
Reigning champions Greece came away from Norway with a 2-2 draw to remain two points clear with a game in hand. Turkey joined Norway on 17 points as they defeated Hungary 3-0, though still have to meet their two main rivals, while Bosnia-Herzegovina are four points behind after a surprise home loss to bottom team Moldova. That nation are Turkey's 13 October opponents, with Greece playing Bosnia-Herzegovina. Four days later Norway go to Bosnia-Herzegovina and Turkey meet Greece.
Leaders Germany sat out Wednesday's qualifying action but their position was strengthened as the Czech Republic, in second, beat the third-placed Republic of Ireland 1-0. Germany, who have four games to go rather than their main rivals' three, lead the Czech Republic by two points with Ireland now six adrift of second place. A draw in Ireland on 13 October would book Germany's qualification, while an away win would also take the Czech Republic through. The top two then meet in Munich four days later.
Croatia remain unbeaten at the top and defeated Estonia and Andorra this week to go three points clear. England's 3-0 wins against Israel and Russia have lifted them to second, and lead their Wembley victims by three and two points respectively. England play Estonia in the only 13 October game and four days later Croatia could all but seal qualification with a home win against Israel, and indeed victory will be enough if Russia do not defeat England in Moscow.
Sweden sat out Wednesday's action and were joined on 19 points by Spain, who beat Latvia 2-0, though the Scandinavian nation have a game in hand. Own-goal defeats for Northern Ireland in Latvia and Iceland have left them three points behind, with Denmark two further back, though like Spain they still have four fixtures remaining. Denmark welcome Spain on 13 October while Sweden go to Liechtenstein.
The Netherlands needed a late goal to win 1-0 in Albania, and like Romania now have 20 points from eight games. Still unbeaten, the top two play in Romania on 13 October while Bulgaria, two points back but with one fewer fixture remaining after defeating Luxembourg 3-0, are not in action that day.
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