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European Qualifiers: State of play

Six nations have already booked their place at next summer’s European Championships, but who is likely to join them after the final round of qualifiers?

It looks set to be a busy week of international football with the European Qualifiers reaching the business end of proceedings.

But how is each group shaping up? We look at the state of play with November’s qualifiers under way…

Group A – England qualify with Czech Republic

England qualified top of Group A on Thursday after they beat Montenegro 7-0 at Wembley. They have one more group game to go as they travel to Kosovo on Sunday (kick-off 5pm).

The Czech Republic have also secured their spot at Euro 2020 after coming from behind to beat Kosovo – who were also vying for second place in Group A – in a dramatic 2-1 victory.

Kosovo do have the back-up of a Nations League play-off spot and could still make it to the tournament next summer.

Coming up: November 17 – Bulgaria vs Czech Republic, Kosovo vs England

Group B – Work still to do for Portugal

Top spot in Group B has gone to Ukraine after their victory over Portugal last time out.

Both Portugal and Serbia won their games on Thursday evening – beating Lithuania and Luxembourg respectively – meaning that the race for second spot will go down to the final games on Sunday.

Portugal are ahead of Serbia by a point and will need to better their result to secure automatic qualification.

If results do not go their way, then there is always the play-offs for Cristiano Ronaldo and his team-mates.

Coming up: November 17 – Luxembourg vs Portugal, Serbia vs Ukraine

Group C – Play-offs loom for Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland have lost control of Group C following their dramatic late defeat to Netherlands last month.

Michael O’Neill has since been appointed the new Stoke manager but he will oversee the games against Germany and Netherlands plus a potential play-off in March.

O’Neill’s side face an uphill battle to qualify automatically as they look to leapfrog one of those countries.

Northern Ireland need two wins from those games if they are to have a realistic chance of automatically reaching next summer’s tournament.

If Netherlands and Germany both avoid defeat against Northern Ireland then they will qualify for Euro 2020, with Ronald Koeman’s side the favourites to top the group because of their superior head-to-head record.

Coming up: Saturday – Germany vs Belarus, Northern Ireland vs Netherlands; November 19 – Germany vs Northern Ireland, Netherlands vs Estonia.

Group D – All to play for

It’s tight at the top of Group D with Republic of Ireland, Denmark and Switzerland all vying for the automatic qualifying spots.

Despite defeat in Switzerland, Mick McCarthy’s side, who still top the group having played a game more, know victory against second-placed Denmark in Dublin on November 18 will see them qualify for next summer’s tournament.

Switzerland, who currently sit third in Group D just one point behind Ireland and Denmark, are now in pole position to top the group.

Coming up: Friday – Denmark vs Gibraltar, Switzerland vs Georgia; November 18 – Gibraltar vs Switzerland, Republic of Ireland vs Denmark.

Group E – Wales need wins to qualify

Croatia are on course to qualify and a point at home against Slovakia on November 16 should be enough to see them get the job done.

Meanwhile, Wales, who are currently fourth in the group, will need to beat Azerbaijan, also on November 16, to keep their qualification dreams alive.

Depending on the result in Croatia, a Wales win in Baku could then set up a winner-takes-all clash with Hungary in Cardiff on November 19.

Coming up: Saturday – Azerbaijan vs Wales, Croatia vs Slovakia; November 19 – Slovakia vs Azerbaijan, Wales vs Hungary.

When is Euro 2020? Hosts, dates, qualification

Teams are booking their Euro 2020 spots at the business end of the qualifying campaign but with 24 sides set to play across 12 host cities, how will the tournament work?

Group F – The battle to join Spain

Spain have sealed their place at Euro 2020 but the battle to join them is now where the interest lies in this group.

Sweden, Romania and Norway are all looking to secure automatic qualification alongside Spain with two more matchdays to come.

Sweden are currently second in the group but face a crucial trip to Romania on November 15 before a home game against Faroe Islands three days later.

Romania are third, one point behind Sweden and three ahead of Norway, but they face difficult games against Sweden and Spain this month.

Norway have plenty to do if they are to pip Sweden and Romania to qualification but matches against Faroe Islands and Malta are very winnable on paper.

Coming up: Friday – Norway vs Faroe Islands, Romania vs Sweden, Spain vs Malta; November 18 – Malta vs Norway, Spain vs Romania, Sweden vs Faroe Islands.

Group G – Austria, North Macedonia, Slovenia, Israel bid to join Poland

Poland have already booked their spot at Euro 2020 but there is a four-way tussle between Austria, North Macedonia, Slovenia and Israel to join them at next summer’s tournament.

Austria are in pole position though as they hold a five-point advantage over North Macedonia – who they face on November 16 – Slovenia and Israel.

Coming up: Saturday – Slovenia vs Latvia, Austria vs North Macedonia, Israel vs Poland; November 19 – Latvia vs Austria, North Macedonia vs Israel, Poland vs Slovenia.

Group H – Turkey and France through

Turkey and France have qualified for Euro 2020 courtesy of Turkey’s 0-0 draw with Iceland in Istanbul on Thursday, with the point seeing the hosts through.

It also meant that France would qualify due to their superior head-to-head record with Iceland – who are set to take part in the March play-off rounds – and they cemented their place with a 2-1 win against Moldova, which sent them top of the group.

Sunday will see France and Turkey battle it out for top spot, with Les Bleus currently ahead by two points.

Coming up: November 17 – Albania vs France, Andorra vs Turkey, Moldova vs Iceland.

Group I – Belgium, Russia already qualified

Top spot is the only thing left to play for in Group I, but with Belgium three points ahead of Russia with a better goal difference (+29 compared to +23), it would take some swing to stop Roberto Martinez’s side.

However, the Russians will be hoping they can perform a miracle when the two sides face each other on November 16 in St Petersburg.

Meanwhile, Scotland’s qualifying campaign did not go to plan, but they do have a second chance after securing a play-off spot thanks to their performance in the Nations League.

Coming up: Saturday – Cyprus vs Scotland, Russia vs Belgium, San Marino vs Kazakhstan; November 19 – Belgium vs Cyprus, San Marino vs Russia, Scotland vs Kazakhstan.

Group J – Finland on course for first major finals

Italy are the runaway winners of Group J but the story is who could be joining them at Euro 2020.

Finland are just a win away from qualifying for their first major tournament with games against Liechtenstein and Greece on November 15 and 18 respectively.

Armenia and Bosnia & Herzegovina will be waiting in the wings should Finland slip up.

Coming up: Friday – Armenia vs Greece, Finland vs Liechtenstein, Bosnia & Herzegovina vs Italy; November 18 – Greece vs Finland, Italy vs Armenia, Liechtenstein vs Bosnia & Herzegovina.

European Qualifiers on Sky Sports

Watch November’s European Qualifiers on Sky Sports from November 14-19 or follow all the action across Sky Sports‘ digital platforms.

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