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Futsal World Cup elite round play-offs: Netherlands, Croatia through

Netherlands saw off Finland on penalties and Croatia squeezed past Poland to become the last two European qualifiers.

Croatia got the better of Poland in the play-offs
Croatia got the better of Poland in the play-offs MATEUSZ SLODKOWSKI / CYFRASPORT

Croatia overcame Poland on Tuesday while Netherlands downed Finland on penalties on Wednesday in the FIFA Futsal World Cup elite round play-off second legs, the pair becoming the last European qualifiers for the finals from 14 September to 6 October in Uzbekistan in the process.

Through to finals

Hosts (1): Uzbekistan
AFC (4): 4 teams TBC by 28 April
CAF (3): 3 teams TBC by 21 April
CONCACAF (4): 4 teams TBC by 17 April
CONMEBOL (4): Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Venezuela
OFC (1): New Zealand
UEFA (7): Croatia, France, Kazakhstan, Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Ukraine

Europe has seven berths in the finals. Five had already been filled by the elite round group stage winners (France, Kazakhstan, Portugal, Spain and Ukraine) and play-off winners Croatia and Netherlands completed the line-up.

First legs

Friday 12 April

Poland 2-3 Croatia

Saturday 13 April

Netherlands 1-1 Finland

Second legs

Tuesday 16 April

Croatia 2-2 Poland (agg: 5-4)

Wednesday 17 April

Finland 4-4 Netherlands (agg: 5-5, Netherlands won 5-4 on pens)

Tie-by-tie

Poland vs Croatia

  • Croatia beat Poland 3-1 in the EURO 2022 group stage in Amsterdam to remain unbeaten in four competitive meetings (three wins and a 7-7 draw in EURO 1999 qualifying), prior to this tie.

Poland

Main round: Group 6 winners (W3-0h vs Greece, L3-4a vs Azerbaijan, W4-1a vs Greece, W7-2h vs Azerbaijan)
Elite round: Group B runners-up (L1-2h vs Serbia, W3-2a vs Ukraine, W7-2h vs Belgium, W3-1a vs Belgium, W4-2a vs Serbia, L3-5h vs Ukraine)

Previous World Cups: 1992 (second group stage)
EURO 2022: Group stage
EURO best: Group stage (2001, 2018, 2022)

Croatia

Main round: Group 7 winners (W5-1h vs Hungary, W7-0a vs Israel, W6-1h vs Israel, D1-1a vs Hungary)
Elite round: Group C runners-up (W5-1a vs Germany, W4-0h vs Slovakia, L2-5a vs France, L1-2h vs France, W4-0h vs Germany, W4-2a vs Slovakia)

Previous World Cups: 2000 (second group stage)
EURO 2022: Group stage
EURO best: Fourth place (2012)

Futsal EURO 2022 highlights: Poland 1-3 Croatia

Netherlands vs Finland

  • Netherlands had won all four of their competitive meetings with Finland, most recently in EURO 2012 qualifying, going into this tie.

Netherlands

Main round: Group 11 runners-up (W2-1h vs Kosovo, L2-4a vs Ukraine, D3-3a vs Kosovo, D1-1h vs Ukraine)
Main round play-offs: W11-3agg vs Moldova (W5-2h, W6-1a)
Elite round: Group A runners-up (L0-2h vs Kazakhstan, L1-6a vs Azerbaijan, W5-0a forfeit vs Romania, W5-0h forfeit vs Romania, L0-2a vs Kazakhstan, W3-0h vs Azerbaijan)

Previous World Cups: 1989 (runners-up), 1992 (second group stage), 1996 (second group stage), 2000 (second group stage)
EURO 2022: Group stage (hosts)
EURO best: Fourth place (1999)

Finland

Main round: Group 8 runners-up (L1-2h vs Romania, W6-0h vs Denmark, D0-0a vs Romania, W4-1h vs Denmark)
Elite round: Group E runners-up (L1-5h vs Portugal, W5-0a forfeit vs Armenia, W5-0a forfeit vs Georgia, W5-0h forfeit vs Georgia, L0-5a vs Portugal, W5-0h forfeit h vs Armenia)

Previous World Cups: Never qualified
EURO 2022: Quarter-finals
EURO best: Quarter-finals (2022)

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