2016 European Championships draw
Spain will be up against Ukraine, Slovakia, Belarus, Macedonia and Luxembourg for a place in the final stages of the 2016 European Championships, after the draw in Nice.
Ukraine appear to be the most difficult opponent in the group, along with two countries Spain knows all about - Slovakia and Belarus. Spain - defending champions after the victory in Kiev in 2012, where the Spaniards successfully defended its trophy from four years before – has to finish either first or second of the group to ensure qualification.
The best third-placed team from the nine groups will also qualify directly for the final stages, while the other teams will battle it out for the remaining four places via a playoff.
The draw revealed some interesting pair-offs. Belgium, the most feared team in pot 2, was paired with the theatrically weaker Bosnia Herzegovina, while England was paired with Switzerland, another team which will be at the World Cup. Croatia, who will also be in Brazil, will be up against Italy.
Portugal was put into the group of five and will therefore play its two friendliest against the host nation – France. In addition, the Portuguese will have tough matches against Denmark and Serbia.
Holland will play against Turkey, the team everybody wanted to avoid in pot 3, as well as the Czech Republic. Another two interesting encounters are Germany-Poland and Russia-Sweden.