If you are a football fan, then you will probably already know about the UEFA Nations League which has begun for the first time this year. UEFA have announced this competition in order to improve football on a national level and 55 different teams are competing in the inaugural competition. In this article, we are going to discuss everything that you need to know about the Nations League. Make sure to keep reading if you’d like to know more about this new tournament.
What Is The Nations League?
Since 2011, EUFA have been talking about creating a new type of competitions for their members and the nations that they represent. This year, this idea finally came to fruition as the competition began in September and teams are coming together to prove their worth off the back of the World Cup in Russia earlier this year. The plan for this tournament was finally agreed on at the XXXVII Ordinary UEFA Congress that took place in Astana in March 2014. This is only the beginning of a really interesting tournament and it is something which football fans and the players have been looking forward to for a long time.
What Is The Format?
If you are a sports betting fan, then you’ll want to know how the competition works and who to bet on. The good news is that this competition involves relegation and promotion so there is a lot to play for. If you were to take a look at a sports betting platform, you would see that the teams that are playing each other are divided into different groups based on ranking. This makes the competition a lot fairer and you might find that placing bets is a lot more interesting when teams are playing those of a similar ranking to them.
There are four main leagues in the Nations League and they have been decided on thanks to UEFA’s rankings that were made in October 2017. Any teams in League A would be seen as the top-ranked sides while those in League D are the lower ranked sides. Next, we are going to discuss some the teams that appear in each league.
Within League A, there are four different groups, these groups will play against each other and the winners of each group will then come up against each other in order to take the top spot. The four teams at the bottom of their group will be relegated down to League B for the next competition. You’ll find the groups in this league as follows:
Group A1: France, Germany, Netherlands
Group A2: Switzerland, Iceland, Belgium
Group A3: Portugal, Italy, Poland
Group A4, Spain, Croatia, England
The winners of each group in this league will be promoted to League A in the next competition. Each team that comes bottom in their group will be relegated to League C. The teams in this league are:
Group B1: Slovakia, Czech Republic Ukraine
Group B2: Turkey, Russia, Sweden
Group B3: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Austria, Northern Ireland
Group B4: Wales, Denmark Republic of Ireland
The teams in this league will play off in their groups. The top four teams in each group will be promoted to League B. The bottom team in each group will be relegated to League D. The teams in League C are as follows:
Group C1: Scotland, Israel, Albania
Group C2: Hungary, Estonia, Greece, Finland
Group C3: Cyprus, Slovenia, Bulgaria, Norway
Group C4: Serbia, Romania, Lithuania, Montenegro
The lowest league in the Nations League competition is League D. The top four teams from each group in this league will be promoted to League C. As this is the bottom league, there will be no relegation. The teams in this group will be as follows:
Group D1: Georgia, Andorra, Kazakhstan, Latvia,
Group D2: Moldova, San Marino Belarus, Luxembourg,
Group D3: Azerbaijan, Kosovo Faroe Islands, Malta,
Group D4: Armenia, Liechtenstein, FYR Macedonia, Gibraltar
On top of this, any team that ranks top of their group in any league will be eligible to play for a place in the UEFA Euro final tournament. This is if they have not already qualified for the competition. There are four places available for the March 2020 tournament.
When Will It Happen?
The Nations League has already kicked off and teams are showing their strength. There are six different matchdays throughout September, October and November. The UEFA Nations League Finals competition will take place in June 2019.
Advantages For Teams?
Through this competition, national teams will be able to benefit from real training against other nations as friendly matches don’t quite cut it. When the matches are competitive, they play better and understand the other team more.
Another advantage is that teams who do not qualify for the Euro final tournaments have another chance to do so. This is great for the lower level teams who might not have normally had a chance of getting into the competition.
On top of this, lower-level teams can take advantage of getting to play against other teams who are closer to their ranking, making it more of a fair competition. These teams have the chance to move up the ranks and find themselves in League A eventually.
Advantages For Supporters?
For football fans, there is a lot more excitement because of this competition. Fans like to see their teams win but when it is a competitive match it is a lot more interesting. Supporters can enjoy something to look forward to when the World Cup and the Euros are not on.
Overall, it is clear that the UEFA Nations League competition is a great addition to football. Teams will be able to show how good they are when the other big competitions aren’t on and they can move up the ranks if they improve. With this competition, there will be more competitive matches and so fans will love coming out to support their team.