Euro 2020 play-offs: All you need to know ahead of 2021 tournament
Scotland, Northern Ireland and Republic of Ireland handed final chance of qualifying for Euro 2020 via play-offs; matches to be played in October and November 2020
Last Updated: 18/06/20 12:20pm
Sixteen nations will be involved in the Euro 2020 play-offs, competing for the final four qualifying spots for next summer's tournament. It's complicated, but here's all you need to know...
The coronavirus pandemic delayed March's play-offs, but here's what's in store for October and November's crunch games...
Who's in the play-offs?
Scotland, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland are among the 16 nations who have secured a second chance of qualifying for Euro 2020 via October and November's play-offs.
The 16 teams have been divided into four play-off paths, as seen below:
- Path A: Iceland, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania
- Path B: Bosnia & Herzegovina, Slovakia, Republic of Ireland, Northern Ireland
- Path C: Scotland, Norway, Serbia, Israel
- Path D: Georgia, North Macedonia, Kosovo, Belarus
What's the play-off format?
In a similar format to the EFL play-offs, the highest-ranked team in each path will host the fourth-ranked team in one semi-final, with the second-ranked nation hosting the third-ranked nation in the other. Which team hosts the final was decided by UEFA in a draw in November 2019.
The play-offs are played in single-leg knockout matches. The winners of the two semi-finals will meet in a one-off final where the winner will qualify for Euro 2020. If the matches are level after 90 minutes, extra time and penalties will be used to determine a winner.
When will the play-offs take place?
The Euro 2020 play-off semi-finals will be held on Thursday October 8, 2020, with the play-off finals taking place on Thursday November 12, 2020 (Kick-off times TBC).
Right, so who's playing who in the semi-finals?
Here's how things stand...
Have you opted into Sky Bet Club?
Opt in and bet £25 or more before 23:59 on Sunday to earn a free £5. Free bets will credited by 7pm on Monday.
Thursday October 8, 2020
- Semi-final 1: Iceland vs Romania
- Semi-final 2: Bulgaria vs Hungary
Winner of Bulgaria vs Hungary match will host Path A play-off final.
- Semi-final 1: Bosnia & Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland
- Semi-final 2: Slovakia vs Republic of Ireland
Winner of Bosnia & Herzegovina vs Northern Ireland match will host Path B play-off final.
- Semi-final 1: Scotland vs Israel
- Semi-final 2: Norway vs Serbia
Winner of Norway vs Serbia match will host the Path C play-off final.
- Semi-final 1: Georgia vs Belarus
- Semi-final 2: North Macedonia vs Kosovo
Winner of Georgia vs Belarus match will host the Path D play-off final.
Thursday November 12, 2020
Path A final
- Bulgaria or Hungary vs Iceland or Romania
Path B final
- Bosnia & Herzegovina or Northern Ireland vs Slovakia or Republic of Ireland
Path C final
- Norway or Serbia vs Scotland or Israel
Path D final
- Georgia or Belarus vs North Macedonia or Kosovo
If both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland navigate their semi-final assignments against Slovakia and Bosnia & Herzegovina respectively, the two Irish nations will compete in a final in Belfast for a place at next summer's tournament.
Scots to face Israel
Scotland drew Israel in the Euro 2020 play-off semi-finals as they aim to reach their first major finals in 22 years.
Steve Clarke's side were assured a home match because they topped their group at the inaugural Nations League, and victory at Hampden Park in October will see them visit either Norway or Serbia for a spot at Euro 2020.
What's the prize for the Path winners?
The four play-off Path winners will secure the final four places at Euro 2020. Each nation will be placed into Pot 4 in the draw for next summer's tournament finals, the date and time of which is still to be confirmed.
Who's already qualified for Euro 2020?
- England, Czech Republic, Ukraine, Portugal, Netherlands, Germany, Denmark, Switzerland, Croatia, Wales, Spain, Sweden, Poland, Austria, France, Turkey, Belgium, Russia, Italy, Finland.