European hopefuls learn play-off fate

European hopefuls learn play-off fate
Sun Oct 21

The teams still in contention for the remaining four of the continent’s 13 places at the final tournament were paired up as follows:

Portugal - Sweden
Ukraine - France
Greece - Romania
Iceland - Croatia

Portugal (ranked 14), Greece (15), Croatia (18) and Ukraine (20) were the seeded teams while France (21), Sweden (25), Romania (29) and Iceland (46) were unseeded, based on the FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking of 17 October 2013

The draw was conducted by Gordon Savic, Head of FIFA World Cup Qualifiers, with the assistance of Alexander Frei, the former Swiss international who appeared in the last two FIFA World Cups™ and 84 international matches (42 goals, all-time Swiss top scorer).

All eight coaches were in attendance: Niko Kovač (Croatia), Didier Deschamps (France), Fernando Santos (Greece), Lars Lagerbäck (Iceland), Paulo Bento (Portugal), Victor Piţurcă (Romania), Erik Hamrén (Sweden) and Mykhailo Fomenko (Ukraine).

The home-and-away play-off matches are due to be played on 15 November and 19 November respectively.

The team which scores the greater number of goals in the two matches qualifies. In the event of a tie, the team that scores the greater number of away goals will qualify. If the winner is still not decided, the second-leg match will go to extra time with two periods of 15 minutes each, with the away goals rule still applied. If no goals are scored in extra time, then the penalty kick procedures will apply, as described in the Laws of the Game.


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