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Euro Qualifiers: Norway win, Spain and Belgium shine

Euro Qualifiers: Norway win, Spain and Belgium shine

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Norway, with goals from footballing sensations Erling Haaland and Martin Odegaard, thwarted Scotland’s early qualification hopes by securing a 2-1 triumph against Georgia. Scotland’s dreams were pinned on a Group A draw to assure their journey to the Euro 2024 finals in Germany. However, Haaland’s commanding header, coupled with Odegaard’s fierce strike, shattered those dreams before the halftime whistle. Not to be easily dismissed, Georgia’s Budu Zivzivadze found the net during stoppage time, making for a nail-biting finish, but Norway’s defense held firm.

In another Group A face-off, Spain, soon to challenge Scotland, displayed their prowess by demolishing Cyprus 6-0 in Granada. Midfielders Gavi and Mikel Merino started the onslaught, and it was up to substitutes Joselu, Ferran Torres, and Alex Baena to conclude it – with the former Manchester City forward bagging two of those goals.

Switching focus to England’s group, Italy, despite their nervy moments, managed to best Ukraine 2-1 and ascend to second place. Davide Frattesi’s commendable efforts granted Italy a temporary respite, but Ukraine’s Andrey Yarmolenko ensured they didn’t rest easy. A major showdown is on the horizon as Italy prepares to lock horns with England on October 17, a fixture that could solidify England’s berth to Germany.

North Macedonia kept their hopes alive, joining Italy and Ukraine with seven points, following a 2-0 triumph over Malta. Contributions from Elif Elmas and Jonav Manev proved crucial. Meanwhile, Belgium’s Romelu Lukaku was in top form, netting twice in their 5-0 rout against Estonia. Early efforts from Jan Vertonghen and Leandro Trossard set the tone, and Charles de Ketelaere added the finishing touch.


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Group F is on a knife’s edge, with Belgium and Austria sharing the lead, both amassing 13 points. Austria, with a remarkable 3-1 win against Sweden, has jeopardized the latter’s Euro hopes. Marco Gregoritsch and Marko Arnautovic’s double ensured a mountainous task for Sweden. Their next fixture against Belgium could potentially decide the group’s topper.

Switzerland’s stronghold in Group I remains intact, thanks to a decisive 3-0 win against Andorra, with goals coming from Cedric Itten, Granit Xhaka, and Xherdan Shaqiri. Israel, trailing by three points, snatched a win against Belarus, all thanks to Gavriel Kanichowsky’s last-minute magic.

Euro 2024: Road to the Championship

Two top teams from each of the ten groups earn direct qualifications. The subsequent three entries come via the play-offs. As of now, Germany is the only guaranteed participant, courtesy of their host status.
The play-off draw is due in November 2023, with matches scheduled between March 21 and 26, 2024.

Euro 2024 kicks off on June 14, with the grand finale set for July 14 at the Olympiastadion, Berlin. The group stage draw will occur in December 2023 at Hamburg’s Elbphilharmonie, with Germany seeded in pot 1. The three play-off winners will not be known at the time of the draw but will be placed into pot 4 for the group stage draw.

A Summer in Germany

Germany, as the hosting nation, gets a direct entry to Euro 2024. Their non-participation in the qualifying round ensures they’ll be fresh and raring to go when the action unfolds next summer. However, they will be looking to secure the services of a new manager soonest if they are to make an impact in the tournament.


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