Final build-up

Road to the final

The 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship features a qualifying group stage and a play-off round to determine which 11 teams join hosts Poland in the final tournament.

Qualifying group stage
Teams are split into nine groups – seven of six sides and two of five – and play each other on a home-and-away basis. The nine group winners qualify automatically. The four runners-up with the best record against the nations first, third, fourth and fifth in their sections advance to the play-offs.

Play-offs
The two play-off ties are contested according to the knockout system. The team that scores the greater aggregate of goals proceeds to the next round, with away goals, extra time and then penalties used to determine the winner in the event of a draw.

Final tournament
The final tournament involves the nine group winners, the two play-off victors and Poland, who qualify automatically as hosts. The 12 sides are divided into three groups of four. Teams play each other once in their section, with the three pool winners and the best runner-up qualifying for the semi-finals.

Further details, including the criteria for separating sides that finish level on points in a group, can be found in the official competition regulations.

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