The road to the expanded 16-team 2014/15 UEFA European Under-17 Championship final tournament in Bulgaria has been paved after the qualifying round draw was made.
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The road to the expanded 2014/15 UEFA European Under-17 Championship final tournament in Bulgaria has been paved after the qualifying round draw was made.
Involving 52 teams, the draw was conducted by Jim Boyce, UEFA Youth and Amateur Committee chairman, and 2012/13 Austria captain Michael Lercher, who received the Fair Play trophy. While top seeds Germany have been given a bye to the elite round, the remaining entrants were split into 13 groups of four sides to be played as mini-tournaments in between 19 September and 31 October 2014.
The top two in each section along with the five third-placed teams with the best record against the leading pair will join Germany in the elite round in spring 2015. In all, 15 nations will join Bulgaria that May, the size of the showpiece doubled from the eight countries that comprised the finals between 2002/03 and 2013/14.
Group 1 (22-27 September): Scotland, Republic of Ireland*, Faroe Islands, Gibraltar
Group 2 (26-31 October): Poland, Georgia*, Estonia, Liechtenstein
Group 3 (15-20 October): Iceland, Italy, Moldova*, Armenia
Group 4 (25-30 October): England, France, Cyprus*, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia
Group 5 (25-30 September): Ukraine, Sweden, Greece, Latvia*
Group 6 (19-24 September): Turkey, Portugal, Slovenia*, Northern Ireland
Group 7 (21-26 October): Croatia, Hungary*, Kazakhstan, Israel
Group 8 (9-14 October): Serbia*, Netherlands, Malta, Finland
Group 9 (8-13 October): Austria, Norway, San Marino, Albania*
Group 10 (23-28 October): Belgium*, Switzerland, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Group 11 (24-29 October): Slovakia*, Spain, Luxembourg, Lithuania
Group 12 (25-30 September): Czech Republic, Denmark, Romania, Andorra*
Group 13 (19-24 October): Russia, Belarus*, Wales, Montenegro
Bye to elite round: Germany
Bye to finals: Bulgaria (hosts)