Europe will have an increased allocation of eight berths in the 2015 FIFA Women's World Cup, hosted by Canada, and the race to earn them begins with the preliminary round draw, streamed live from Nyon at 14.00CET on Tuesday 18 December.
The eight teams with the lowest coefficients will be drawn into two groups of four teams to be played as one-venue mini-tournaments from 4 to 9 April. Among those eight are Albania, playing in their first women's competition at any level, and senior debutants Montenegro.
There will be two pots: the hosts (Malta and Lithuania) and the remaining entrants (Albania, Faroe Islands, Georgia, Latvia, Luxembourg and Montenegro). Each group will contain one host and three teams from the other pot. The top two in each group will progress to the qualifying group stage draw on 16 April where they will join the 38 top-ranked nations.
Seven groups of six teams will be played on a home-and-away basis from 20/21 September 2013 to 17 September 2014. The seven group winners qualify for the finals. The four runners-up with the best record against the sides first, third, fourth and fifth in their groups go into two rounds of knockout play-offs drawn on 23 September and plaon 25/26 and 29/30 October, and 22/23 and 26/27 November 2014 for the remaining UEFA berth in Canada the following summer.
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