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The 2018–19 UEFA Nations League A is the top division of the 2018–19 edition of the UEFA Nations League, the inaugural season of the international football competition involving the men's national teams of the 55 member associations of UEFA.[1] League A culminated with the Nations League Finals in June 2019, which crowned Portugal as the inaugural champions of the UEFA Nations League.

2018–19 UEFA Nations League A
Tournament details
DatesLeague phase:
6 September – 20 November 2018
Nations League Finals:
5–9 June 2019
Teams12
Final positions
Champions Portugal (1st title)
Runners-up Netherlands
Third place England
Fourth place  Switzerland
Relegated Croatia
 Germany
 Iceland
 Poland
Tournament statistics
Matches played28
Goals scored81 (2.89 per match)
Attendance1,143,530 (40,840 per match)
Top scorer(s)Switzerland Haris Seferović (5 goals)

Contents

FormatEdit

League A consists of the top 12 ranked UEFA members, split into four groups of three. The winners of each group will advance to the UEFA Nations League Finals, and the third-placed team of each group will be relegated to the 2020–21 UEFA Nations League B.[2]

The Nations League Finals will take place in June 2019 and be played in a knockout format, consisting of the semi-finals, third place play-off, and final. The semi-final pairings, along with the administrative home teams for the third place play-off and final, are determined by means of a draw on 3 December 2018.[3] The host country will be selected among the four qualified teams on 3 December 2018 by the UEFA Executive Committee,[4] with the winners of the final crowned as the inaugural champions of the UEFA Nations League.

The four group winners will be drawn into groups of five teams for the UEFA Euro 2020 qualifying competition (in order to accommodate for the Nations League Finals). In addition, League A will be allocated one of the four remaining UEFA Euro 2020 places. Four teams from League A which have not already qualified for the European Championship finals will compete in the play-offs, to be played in March 2020. The play-off berths will be first allocated to the group winners, and if any of the group winners have already qualified for the European Championship finals, then to the next best ranked team of the league, etc. If there are fewer than four teams in League A which have not already qualified for the European Championship finals, the play-off berths will be allocated to the next best ranked team of the following league, etc. The play-offs will consist of two "one-off" semi-finals (best-ranked team vs. fourth best-ranked team and second best-ranked team vs. third best-ranked team, played at home of higher-ranked teams) and one "one-off" final between the two semi-final winners (venue drawn in advance between semi-final 1 and 2).[5][6]

SeedingEdit

Teams were allocated to League A according to their UEFA national team coefficients after the conclusion of the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying group stage on 11 October 2017. Teams were split into three pots of four teams, ordered based on their UEFA national team coefficient.[7][8] The seeding pots for the draw were announced on 7 December 2017.[9]

Pot 1
Team Coeff Rank
  Germany 40,747 1
  Portugal 38,655 2
  Belgium 38,123 3
  Spain 37,311 4
Pot 2
Team Coeff Rank
  France 36,617 5
  England 36,231 6
   Switzerland 34,986 7
  Italy 34,426 8
Pot 3
Team Coeff Rank
  Poland 32,982 9
  Iceland 31,155 10
  Croatia 31,139 11
  Netherlands 29,866 12

The group draw took place at the SwissTech Convention Center in Lausanne, Switzerland on 24 January 2018, 12:00 CET.[10][11][12][13][14][15]

GroupsEdit

The fixture list was confirmed by UEFA on 24 January 2018 following the draw.[16][17]

Times are CET/CEST,[note 1] as listed by UEFA (local times, if different, are in parentheses).

Group 1Edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation      
1   Netherlands 4 2 1 1 8 4 +4 7[a] Qualification to Nations League Finals 2–0 3–0
2   France 4 2 1 1 4 4 0 7[a] 2–1 2–1
3   Germany 4 0 2 2 3 7 −4 2 Relegation to League B 2–2 0–0
Source: UEFA
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
Notes:
  1. ^ a b Head-to-head goal difference: Netherlands +1, France −1.
Germany  0–0  France
Report
Attendance: 67,485[18]

France  2–1  Netherlands
Report

Netherlands  3–0  Germany
Report

France  2–1  Germany
Report

Netherlands  2–0  France
Report
Attendance: 44,366[18]

Germany  2–2  Netherlands
Report

Group 2Edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation      
1    Switzerland 4 3 0 1 14 5 +9 9[a] Qualification to Nations League Finals 5–2 6–0
2   Belgium 4 3 0 1 9 6 +3 9[a] 2–1 2–0
3   Iceland 4 0 0 4 1 13 −12 0 Relegation to League B 1–2 0–3
Source: UEFA
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
Notes:
  1. ^ a b Head-to-head goal difference: Switzerland +2, Belgium −2.
Switzerland   6–0  Iceland
Report
Attendance: 14,912[19]

Iceland  0–3  Belgium
Report

Belgium  2–1   Switzerland
Report

Iceland  1–2   Switzerland
Report

Belgium  2–0  Iceland
Report

Switzerland   5–2  Belgium
Report
Attendance: 15,000[19]

Group 3Edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation      
1   Portugal 4 2 2 0 5 3 +2 8 Qualification to Nations League Finals 1–0 1–1
2   Italy 4 1 2 1 2 2 0 5 0–0 1–1
3   Poland 4 0 2 2 4 6 −2 2 Relegation to League B 2–3 0–1
Source: UEFA
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
Italy  1–1  Poland
Report

Portugal  1–0  Italy
Report
Attendance: 52,635[20]

Poland  2–3  Portugal
Report

Poland  0–1  Italy
Report

Italy  0–0  Portugal
Report
Attendance: 73,000[20]

Portugal  1–1  Poland
Report

Group 4Edit

Pos Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts Qualification or relegation      
1   England 4 2 1 1 6 5 +1 7 Qualification to Nations League Finals 1–2 2–1
2   Spain 4 2 0 2 12 7 +5 6 2–3 6–0
3   Croatia 4 1 1 2 4 10 −6 4 Relegation to League B 0–0 3–2
Source: UEFA
Rules for classification: Tiebreakers
England  1–2  Spain
Report

Spain  6–0  Croatia
Report

Croatia  0–0  England
Report

Spain  2–3  England
Report

Croatia  3–2  Spain
Report

England  2–1  Croatia
Report

Nations League FinalsEdit

The draw took place on 3 December 2018 at the Shelbourne Hotel in Dublin, Republic of Ireland.[3]

Times are CEST (UTC+2), as listed by UEFA (local times are in parentheses).

BracketEdit

 
Semi-finalsFinal
 
      
 
5 June 2019 – Porto
 
 
  Portugal3
 
9 June 2019 – Porto
 
   Switzerland1
 
  Portugal1
 
6 June 2019 – Guimarães
 
  Netherlands0
 
  Netherlands (a.e.t.)3
 
 
  England1
 
Third place play-off
 
 
9 June 2019 – Guimarães
 
 
   Switzerland0 (5)
 
 
  England (p)0 (6)

Semi-finalsEdit

Portugal  3–1   Switzerland
Report
Attendance: 42,415[23]
Referee: Felix Brych (Germany)

Netherlands  3–1 (a.e.t.)  England
Report

Third place play-offEdit

Switzerland   0–0 (a.e.t.)  England
Report
Penalties
5–6

FinalEdit

Portugal  1–0  Netherlands
Report

GoalscorersEdit

Overall rankingEdit

The 12 League A teams are ranked 1st to 12th overall in the 2018–19 UEFA Nations League according to the following rules:[2][27]

  • The teams finishing first in the groups will be ranked 1st to 4th according to the results of the Nations League Finals.
  • The teams finishing second in the groups were ranked 5th to 8th according to the results of the league phase.
  • The teams finishing third in the groups were ranked 9th to 12th according to the results of the league phase.
Rnk Grp Team Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
1 A3   Portugal 4 2 2 0 5 3 +2 8
2 A1   Netherlands 4 2 1 1 8 4 +4 7
3 A4   England 4 2 1 1 6 5 +1 7
4 A2    Switzerland 4 3 0 1 14 5 +9 9
5 A2   Belgium 4 3 0 1 9 6 +3 9
6 A1   France 4 2 1 1 4 4 0 7
7 A4   Spain 4 2 0 2 12 7 +5 6
8 A3   Italy 4 1 2 1 2 2 0 5
9 A4   Croatia 4 1 1 2 4 10 −6 4
10 A3   Poland 4 0 2 2 4 6 −2 2
11 A1   Germany 4 0 2 2 3 7 −4 2
12 A2   Iceland 4 0 0 4 1 13 −12 0
Source: UEFA
Rules for classification: Ranking criteria

Prize moneyEdit

The prize money to be distributed was announced in March 2018.[28] Each team in League A will receive a solidarity fee of €1.5 million. In addition, the four group winners will receive double this amount via a €1.5M bonus fee.

The four group winners of League A, which will participate in the Nations League Finals, will also receive the following fees based on performance:

  • Winners: €4.5M
  • Runners-up: €3.5M
  • Third place: €2.5M
  • Fourth place: €1.5M

This means that the maximum amount of solidarity and bonus fees for a team from League A is €7.5M.

Qualifying play-offsEdit

The four best teams in League A according to the overall ranking that have not qualified for UEFA Euro 2020 through the qualifying group stage will compete in the play-offs, with the winners qualifying for the final tournament. If there are fewer than four teams in League A that have not qualified, the remaining slots are allocated to teams from another league, according to the overall ranking.

  Qualified directly for the final tournament
  Advanced to play-offs (in bold)
  Assured of a play-off spot, but may still qualify directly for the final tournament
League A
Team Rank
  Portugal[GW] 1
  Netherlands[GW][H] 2
  England[GW][H] 3
   Switzerland[GW] 4
  Belgium 5
  France 6
  Spain[H] 7
  Italy[H] 8
  Croatia 9
  Poland 10
  Germany[H] 11
  Iceland 12

Notes

  1. GW Nations League group winner
  2. H UEFA Euro 2020 host

NotesEdit

  1. ^ CET (UTC+1) for matches in November 2018, and CEST (UTC+2) for all other matches.
  2. ^ The Croatia v England match was played behind closed doors due to a UEFA punishment against Croatia for racist behaviour in their UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying home match against Italy.[22]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "UEFA Nations League receives associations' green light". UEFA. 27 March 2014.
  2. ^ a b "Regulations of the UEFA Nations League 2018/19" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 28 September 2017. Retrieved 3 October 2017.
  3. ^ a b "UEFA Nations League Finals: Draw Procedure" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 27 September 2018. Retrieved 27 September 2018.
  4. ^ "Lyon to host 2018 UEFA Europa League final". UEFA. 9 December 2016.
  5. ^ "UEFA Nations League format and schedule approved". UEFA.com. 4 December 2014.
  6. ^ "UEFA Nations League format and schedule confirmed". UEFA. 4 December 2014.
  7. ^ "Confirmed: How the UEFA Nations League will line up". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 11 October 2017. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  8. ^ "National Team Coefficients Overview" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 11 October 2017. Retrieved 11 October 2017.
  9. ^ "UEFA Nations League draw seedings confirmed". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 7 December 2017. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  10. ^ "UEFA Nations League format confirmed". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 20 September 2017. Retrieved 20 September 2017.
  11. ^ "UEFA Nations League 2018/19 – League Phase Draw Procedure" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 7 December 2017. Retrieved 8 December 2017.
  12. ^ "All you need to know: UEFA Nations League draw". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 17 January 2018. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  13. ^ "League Phase Draw Press Kit" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 22 January 2018. Retrieved 23 January 2018.
  14. ^ "Group stage draw". UEFA.com. 24 January 2018.
  15. ^ "UEFA Nations League 2018/19 League Phase draw". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 January 2018. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  16. ^ "UEFA Nations League calendar: all the fixtures". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 January 2018. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  17. ^ "UEFA Nations League 2018/19: Fixtures List – League Phase" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 24 January 2018. Retrieved 24 January 2018.
  18. ^ a b c d e f "Summary UEFA Nations League A – Group 1". Soccerway. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  19. ^ a b c d e f "Summary UEFA Nations League A – Group 2". Soccerway. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  20. ^ a b c d e f "Summary UEFA Nations League A – Group 3". Soccerway. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  21. ^ a b c d e f "Summary UEFA Nations League A – Group 4". Soccerway. Retrieved 30 November 2018.
  22. ^ "England's Nations League match in Croatia will be behind closed doors". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 30 January 2018. Retrieved 30 January 2018.
  23. ^ "Full Time Report – Semi-finals – Portugal v Switzerland" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 5 June 2019. Retrieved 5 June 2019.
  24. ^ "Full Time Report – Semi-finals – Netherlands v England" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 6 June 2019. Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  25. ^ "Full Time Report – Third-place match – Switzerland v England" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 9 June 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
  26. ^ "Full Time Report – Final – Portugal v Netherlands" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 9 June 2019. Retrieved 9 June 2019.
  27. ^ "2018/19 UEFA Nations League rankings" (PDF). UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 20 November 2018. Retrieved 21 November 2018.
  28. ^ "UEFA Nations League solidarity and bonus fees". UEFA.com. Union of European Football Associations. 23 March 2018. Retrieved 4 April 2018.

External linksEdit