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Competition format

There are two qualifying rounds before the final tournament, which consists of two groups of four with the top two progressing to a direct knockout competition.
Competition format
The UEFA European Women's Under-19 Championship trophy ©Sportsfile

Competition format

There are two qualifying rounds before the final tournament, which consists of two groups of four with the top two progressing to a direct knockout competition.

Europe's best teenage female footballers have been showcasing their skills in this competition since its inception as the UEFA European Women's Under-18 Championship ahead of the 1997/98 season.

Direct knockout
Twenty-six teams entered in the inaugural year and by the time the competition switched to an U19 event in 2001/02 that was up to 34. An impressive 45 contested the latest edition in Italy – including the hosts – and to accommodate the growing number of entrants and refine a competition still in relative infancy, it has undergone a host of changes, big and small, since it started.

Present format
The current format has been more or less unchanged in nine seasons now, however. There are two qualifying rounds featuring groups of four teams, with one country hosting the round-robin fixtures, played over six days.

The group winners and runners-up with the best record against the first and third-placed sides in the second stage join the hosts, who receive a bye, in the finals. There they are divided into two groups of four, the top two advance to the semi-finals where it reverts to a direct knockout competition.

Challenge cup
The challenge cup is donated by UEFA to the winning association for one year, with the holders returning it two months before the next final round. A scaled-down replica of the cup is awarded to the winners, with the challenge cup becoming the permanent property of any association that lifts the trophy three consecutive times or five times in total.

YearAgeEntrantsFormatFinals hostsWinners
1997/98U1826Prelim round – 8 groups of 3/4
Two-legged QF, SF, F
N/ADenmark
1998/99U1828Prelim round – 8 groups of 3/4
Two-legged QF
Round-robin finals
SwedenSweden
1999/2000U1832Three qualifying group rounds
Finals: 4-team group, top 2 in final
FranceGermany
2000/01U1832Three qualifying group rounds
Finals: SF, F
NorwayGermany
2001/02U1934Three qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
SwedenGermany
2002/03U1938Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
GermanyFrance
2003/04U1941Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
FinlandSpain
2004/05U1942Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
HungaryRussia
2005/06U1943Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
SwitzerlandGermany
2006/07U1945Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
IcelandGermany
2007/08U1945Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
FranceItaly
2008/09U1945Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
BelarusEngland
2009/10U1945Two qualifying group rounds
Finals: group stage, SF, F
FYROM
France

Key
QF – Quarter-finals
SF – Semi-finals
F – Final

http://www.uefa.com/womensunder19/season=2011/competitionformat/index.html#competition+format

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