Germany will have to overcome this year's runners-up Spain in the UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship second qualifying round after an intriguing draw in Nyon.
The five-time winners failed to qualify for the first time in 11 editions last season and will be eager to avoid a repeat against a Spain team beaten in extra time in this summer's showpiece. The Iberian side have, of course, inscribed their name on the trophy before, in 2004, earning a famous 2-1 win against Germany, just days after a 7-0 group stage defeat by the same opponents. The Czech Republic and Greece complete Group 6.
Germany are among three teams entering the tournament at this stage, given a bye through the first qualifying round along with France and England. They both face stiff challenges, too, with England pitted against Norway for the fifth time in six seasons – they have won one apiece in that time, drawing the others. Yet arguably the most mouth-watering pool is Group 1, where Sweden face a real battle to defend their title.
Italy, final tournament regulars and winners in 2008, the Netherlands and an up-and-coming Republic of Ireland team await the holders – Amanda Ilestedt, who captained them to this year's title, did her compatriots few favours as she assisted on making the draw. She was on stage with UEFA Women's Football Committee chairwoman Karen Espelund and Mikael Salzer, UEFA head of women's and futsal competitions.
Second qualifying round draw
Group 1: Republic of Ireland, Sweden, Italy, Netherlands*
Group 2: France, Switzerland, Belgium*, Russia
Group 3: Denmark, Ukraine, Scotland*, Austria
Group 4: England, Norway*, Serbia, Hungary
Group 5: Finland, Northern Ireland, Portugal*, Iceland
Group 6: Germany*, Czech Republic, Spain, Greece
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