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Women's European Qualifiers group deciders: Preview

We preview the games on Friday and Tuesday as six more finals places are decided and the play-off line-up is set.

The Netherlands will qualify if they beat Italy in the very tight Group A
The Netherlands will qualify if they beat Italy in the very tight Group A Getty Images

The league phase of the first new-look Women's European Qualifiers ends on Friday and Tuesday, with six more teams set to emulate Germany and Spain in clinching finals places alongside hosts Switzerland without needing to go through the play-offs.

Automatic qualification is the prize for those that finish in the top two of the four League A groups with the other eight teams in the highest tier entering the play-offs alongside 12 nations from League B and six from League C. Those spots will be settled on Matchday 5 and 6 along with promotion and relegation between the leagues ahead of the next UEFA Women's Nations League.

We preview the action.

Permutations: Who needs what

Who has qualified for Women's EURO 2025 or reached the play-offs?

Through to finals: Germany, Spain, Switzerland (hosts)

Can still earn direct qualification: Austria, Belgium, Czechia, Denmark, England, Finland, France, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden

Confirmed in play-offs from League A: Poland, Republic of Ireland

Confirmed in play-offs from League B: Croatia, Portugal, Scotland, Serbia, Wales

Confirmed in play-offs from League C: Albania

Relegated from League A: Republic of Ireland

Promoted from League C: Albania

All the matches

All kick-off times CET

League A

Group A1

On paper this looked a competitive group and so it has proved, Netherlands bouncing back from their opening loss in Italy to lead, though only three points ahead of fourth-placed Finland. Still, victory in Sittard against Italy will take the 2017 champions, now without retired Lieke Martens but boosted in the group by Lineth Beerensteyn's goals, to the finals.

Any of the four teams could still be inside or outside the top two going into Matchday 6 in a group yet to produce an away win, in stark contrast to the other three League A sections.

Friday 12 July
Finland vs Norway (18:00)
Netherlands vs Italy (20:45)

Tuesday 16 July
Norway vs Netherlands (19:00)
Italy vs Finland
(19:00)

Group A2

Spain came back from two down with less than 15 minutes left to beat Denmark 3-2 in sealing qualification on Matchday 4, and could be forgiven if they already have half an eye on the Olympic tournament, which kicks off on 25 July, as they seek to add one of only two UEFA or FIFA women's senior or youth football titles they have never previously won or indeed currently hold – the other being Women's EURO itself.

The race for second place is tighter and might well be settled in Sint-Truiden, where an away win would take Denmark to the finals but a draw would still leave them best-placed. Czechia must win both games to qualify automatically and defeat by Spain would confirm their relegation.

Friday 12 July
Czechia vs Spain (18:00)
Belgium vs Denmark (20:00)

Tuesday 16 July
Denmark vs Czechia
(19:00)
Spain vs Belgium (19:00)

Group A3

France missed the chance to qualify on Matchday 4 when they lost at home to England four days after an away win against the European champions. Still, victory against Sweden would take Les Bleues through with a game to spare and allow them to turn their thoughts to their home Olympic campaign.

Sweden versus England in Gothenburg, meanwhile, looks a decider, with both hoping to come out of Friday only needing a draw; they finished 1-1 at Wembley. Republic of Ireland are already relegated and in the play-offs though of course could still have a say on who ends in the top two.

Friday 12 July
England vs Republic of Ireland (21:00)
France vs Sweden (21:10)

Tuesday 16 July
Sweden vs England (19:00)
Republic of Ireland vs France (19:00)

Group A4

Germany have come from behind to secure three of their four wins which have ensured their qualification as they too have an Olympic campaign to look to in Horst Hrubesch's final games in charge before Christian Wück takes over next season.

Iceland are three points clear of Austria in the race for the other qualification spot and have the head-to-head advantage after their away draw and home win in their direct matches. Iceland will qualify if they win either of their remaining games, and even if other results go their way Austria will need something when they go to Hannover to face Germany. Poland are already into the play-offs and must beat Austria to avoid relegation with a game to spare.

Friday 12 July
Austria vs Poland (18:00)
Iceland vs Germany (18:15)

Tuesday 16 July
Germany vs Austria (19:00)
Poland vs Iceland
(19:00)

League B

Group B1

For finals hosts Switzerland, promotion as group winners is the only goal with no need to go through the play-offs, and while a 1-0 loss in Hungary on Matchday 4 was a setback, victory against Türkiye would seal a League A return with a game to spare in a group where all three other teams have play-off ambitions, at least as best fourth-placed team.

Friday 12 July
Azerbaijan vs Hungary (18:00)
Türkiye vs Switzerland (19:30)

Tuesday 16 July
Switzerland vs Azerbaijan (19:00)
Hungary vs Türkiye (19:00)

Group B2

Serbia and Scotland are both sure of play-off slots and promotion will be decided when they meet on Tuesday in Glasgow, having drawn 0-0 in Leskovac. Slovakia are well-placed for the other guaranteed play-off spot, having won their home game against Israel 2-0.

Friday 12 July
Slovakia vs Scotland (19:00)
Serbia vs Israel
(20:00)

Tuesday 16 July
Scotland vs Serbia (19:00)
Israel vs Slovakia (19:00)

Group B3

Portugal are already into the play-offs as they seek to reach a third straight EURO and their 3-0 home win against Bosnia and Herzegovina means they can even afford a two-goal defeat in Zenica to seal promotion with a game to spare. Northern Ireland beating Malta would ensure both they and Bosnia and Herzegovina are confirmed in the play-offs. Malta did draw 0-0 in Belfast, though.

Friday 12 July
Bosnia and Herzegovina vs Portugal (19:00)
Malta vs Northern Ireland (19:30)

Tuesday 16 July
Portugal vs Malta (19:00)
Northern Ireland vs Bosnia and Herzegovina (19:00)

Group B4

Croatia and Wales are already into the play-offs and Ukraine are a point from joining them, though they will look for victory in Kosovo to potentially stay in the promotion race depending on what happens in Karlovac when the top two meet. Croatia are up if they win that game though Wales can return to League A with two July victories.

Friday 12 July
Kosovo vs Ukraine (18:00)
Croatia vs Wales (20:15)

Tuesday 16 July
Wales vs Kosovo (19:00)
Ukraine vs Croatia (19:00)

League C

Group C1

Belarus will be promoted if they draw in Georgia or beat Cyprus. Lithuania vs Georgia could well decide second place though the race for the three play-off spots among the five League C runners-up is currently close across the groups.

Friday 12 July
Georgia vs Belarus (18:00)
Cyprus vs Lithuania (20:00)

Tuesday 16 July
Lithuania vs Georgia (19:00)
Belarus vs Cyprus (19:00)

Group C2

Slovenia, like Belarus, have two chances to clinch first place thanks to their five-point cushion. Moldova cannot make the play-offs and neither will Latvia if they do not beat North Macedonia, who will look to win in Skopje to give themselves the best possible chance.

Friday 12 July
North Macedonia vs Latvia (19:00)
Moldova vs Slovenia (19:00)

Tuesday 16 July 
Slovenia vs North Macedonia (19:00)
Latvia vs Moldova (19:00)

Group C3

Promotion and the guaranteed play-off spot will be decided when Montenegro host Greece on Tuesday though victories for either four days earlier would help both teams' bid for the insurance of a best runners-up spot. Neither the Faroe Islands nor Andorra are still in contention.

Friday 12 July
Faroe Islands vs Montenegro (17:45)
Greece vs Andorra
(19:00)

Tuesday 16 July
Andorra vs Faroe Islands (19:00)
Montenegro vs Greece (19:00)

Group C4

Things look good for Romania as even if first place ends up still up for grabs in Bucharest on Matchday 6, they have the head-to-head cushion of having won 5-0 in Armenia.

Friday 12 July
Kazakhstan vs Romania (16:00)
Armenia vs Bulgaria (17:45)

Tuesday 16 July
Romania vs Armenia (19:00)
Bulgaria vs Kazakhstan (19:00)

Group C5

Albania have completed their fixtures in the sole three-team group and already clinched the promotion slot and a play-off. Estonia can still seal second place with four points against Luxembourg, who themselves will be hoping to build on their win against Albania to finish as one of the three best runners-up.

Friday 12 July
Luxembourg vs Estonia (19:30)

Tuesday 16 July
Estonia vs Luxembourg (19:00)

How qualifying works

League phase

In qualifying, as per the league stage of the Nations League, teams compete in groups of four or three teams (League C) and over six matchdays between April and July, with each team playing one home match and one away match against all the other teams in their group.

For qualifying itself, the top two teams in each League A group will gain places in the July 2025 finals alongside hosts Switzerland (who will compete in League B although their automatic qualification is assured). The remaining seven spots will be decided by two rounds of play-offs in October and November/December.

Play-offs

The first round of the play-offs is split into two paths. In one path, the teams finishing third and fourth in League A will play the five group winners and three best-ranked runners-up in League C (for ranking the three best runners-up, results against fourth-placed teams are not counted). The eight winners progress to the second round.

In the other first round path, the four group winners and two best-ranked runners-up in League B will be drawn into six ties against the remaining two runners-up and four third-placed teams in League B. The six winners progress to the second round.

In the second round, the teams from both paths come together and will be drawn into seven ties, with seeding for the seven highest-ranked teams based on the European Qualifiers overall league rankings. The seven winners progress to the final tournament.

The play-off paths will be adjusted as necessary to take into account the performance of Women's EURO hosts Switzerland, who compete in League B but are guaranteed a slot in the final tournament.

If Switzerland finishes as a League B winner, runner-up or in third place, the best-ranked fourth-placed team of League B will complete the round 1 path 2 play-off line-up and the draw seeding for the six ties will be adjusted accordingly.

Promotion and relegation

Promotion and relegation will also be at stake ahead of the next UEFA Women's Nations League, beginning the 2025–27 competition cycle:

• The winners, runners-up and third-placed teams of League A stay in League A;

• The runners-up and three best-ranked third-placed teams in League B stay in League B;

• The runners-up, third-placed and fourth-placed teams in League C stay in League C;

• The winners of Leagues B and C will be promoted to the next league;

• All fourth-placed teams in Leagues A and B, as well as the lowest-ranked third-placed team of League B, will be relegated to the next league.

Women's EURO 2025 calendar

Qualifying league stage matchday 5: 12 July 2024
Qualifying league stage matchday 6: 16 July 2024
Play-off draw: 19 July 2024
Play-off round 1 (2 legs): 23–29 October 2024
Play-off round 2 (2 legs): 27 November–3 December 2024
Finals draw: 16 December 2024
Finals: 2–27 July 2025 (Switzerland)

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