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Republic of Ireland in League B alongside Wales and the North as Nations League line-ups confirmed

There are 12 teams in total in League B, with the group stage draw taking place in January 2018.

Image: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Updated 12.00

WITH THE GROUP stages of the 2018 World Cup qualifying complete, the line-ups for the inaugural Uefa Nations League have been confirmed.

The competition, which Uefa say will replace “most friendlies” in international football, is due to begin on 6 September 2018, and will separate teams according to how they are ranked.

Here’s an explainer if you need to catch up:

So basically, there are four leagues — A, B, C and D — in which sides have been placed according to their position in the Uefa National Team Coefficient Rankings following the end of the European Qualifiers for the 2018 FIFA World Cup (play-off results will not be included).

Where do Ireland find themselves?

The Republic of Ireland are in League B along with Austria, Wales, Russia, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Northern Ireland, Denmark, Czech Republic and Turkey.

Martin O’Neill’s side’s 1-0 win in Cardiff on Monday night has cost Wales a position in League A.

As per the Uefa website, here’s how League B will work:

  • Teams will be split into four groups of three. The four group winners are promoted to League A, with the four sides that finish bottom relegated to League C for the next competition, to be played in 2020.
  • The top four-ranked League B teams that do not qualify for Euro 2020 will enter play-offs in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

Robbie Brady with Ben Davies Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The group stage draw will take place on 24 January 2018 in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Elsewhere, League A consists of the 12 top-ranked teams: Germany, Portugal, Belgium, Spain, France, England, Switzerland, Italy, Poland, Iceland, Croatia and the Netherlands.

  • The 12 teams will be divided into four groups of three, with the four group winners, or Final Four, then contesting the Uefa Nations League Finals — semi-finals, third-place match and final — in June 2019. A host country will be appointed in December 2018 from the finalist teams.
  • The four bottom teams in their respective groups will be relegated to League B for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four-ranked teams that do not qualify for Euro 2020 will contest a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

League C contains Hungary, Romania, Scotland, Slovenia, Greece, Serbia, Albania, Norway, Montenegro, Israel, Bulgaria, Finland, Cyprus, Estonia and Lithuania.

  • Teams will be split into one group of three and three groups of four. The four group winners will be promoted to League B, with the four bottom sides relegated to League D for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four-ranked teams that do not qualify for Euro 2020 will contest a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

And League D consists of Azerbaijan, FYR Macedonia, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia, Latvia, Faroe Islands, Luxembourg, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Liechtenstein, Malta, Andorra, Kosovo, San Marino and Gibraltar.

  • Teams will be drawn into four groups of four. The four group winners will be promoted to League C for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four-ranked teams that do not qualify for Euro 2020 will contest a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

Here’s how the calendar looks

The Uefa Nations League group stage will be played across three international breaks between September and November 2018.

Euro 2020 qualifying will then take place between March and November 2019, with the Uefa Nations League Finals for the top four teams in June 2019.

The Euro 2020 qualification play-offs are set for March 2020 as mentioned above, and Euro 2020 itself, which will be played across the continent, will begin three months later.

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- This article was originally published at 11.20am.

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Emma Duffy

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