What is the UEFA Nations League?

Hugely popular with national-team coaches, the UEFA Nations League was devised to replace friendlies with meaningful international games.

Cristiano Ronaldo with the trophy after the inaugural UEFA Nations League finals
Cristiano Ronaldo with the trophy after the inaugural UEFA Nations League finals VI-Images via Getty Images

UEFA's newest national-team competition, the UEFA Nations League was devised to replace friendlies with competitive matches, allowing nations to play against equally ranked teams.

The 55 associations were split into four Leagues according to their position in the UEFA National Team Coefficient Rankings following the 2018/19 inaugural UEFA Nations League. A new league structure was introduced after the first edition, comprising 16 teams in Leagues A, B and C and seven teams in League D. The four group winners of the top-ranked League A qualify for the UEFA Nations League Finals.

The group winners in Leagues B, C and D will gain promotion. Those who finish bottom of the groups in Leagues A and B will be relegated. Two League C teams will be relegated to League D for the third edition of the competition in 2022/23. Those two teams are determined by play-offs (home and away) between the four fourth-ranked teams from each League C group.

The four group winners of League A qualify for the UEFA Nations League Finals. The knockout tournament will be hosted by one of the quartet.

The draw for League Phase of the 2020/21 UEFA Nations League was made in Amsterdam on 3 March 2020:

LEAGUE A

Group A1: Netherlands, Italy, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Poland
Group A2: England, Belgium, Denmark, Iceland
Group A3: Portugal, France, Sweden, Croatia
Group A4: Switzerland, Spain, Ukraine, Germany

LEAGUE B

Group B1: Austria, Norway, Northern Ireland, Romania
Group B2: Czech Republic, Scotland, Slovakia, Israel
Group B3: Russia, Serbia, Turkey, Hungary
Group B4: Wales, Finland, Republic of Ireland, Bulgaria

LEAGUE C

Group C1: Montenegro, Cyprus, Luxembourg, Azerbaijan
Group C2: Georgia, North Macedonia, Estonia, Armenia
Group C3: Greece, Kosovo, Slovenia, Moldova
Group C4: Albania, Belarus, Lithuania, Kazakhstan

LEAGUE D

Group D1: Faroe Islands, Latvia, Andorra, Malta
Group D2: Gibraltar, Liechtenstein, San Marino

The full fixture schedule with confirmed dates and kick-off times is available here.

Roll of honour

2018/19: Portugal
2020/21: TBD