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Dublin: 11°C Wednesday 14 April 2021

8 teams Ireland could face in the Euro 2016 playoffs

Martin O’Neill’s side’s loss tonight means they will have to play two additional matches in their bid to reach France.

N.B. It has yet to be confirmed whether or not Ireland will be one of the four seeded teams.

1. Turkey (Fifa ranking: 37)

Turkey Netherlands Euro Soccer Source: AP/Press Association Images

Turkey need just a point against Iceland to guarantee their spot in the playoffs at the expense of the Netherlands.

2. Bosnia and Herzegovina (Fifa ranking: 30)

Soccer - UEFA Euro 2016 - Qualifying - Group B - Wales v Bosnia Herzegovina - Cardiff City Stadium Source: David Davies

Israel take on Belgium in their final game and need to better Bosnia’s result against Cyprus to have any hope of displacing them in third.

3. Ukraine (Fifa ranking: 24)

Spain Ukraine Euro Soccer Source: Angel Fernandez

Slovakia will claim second provided they beat Luxembourg — otherwise Ukraine will leapfrog them if they can beat Spain.

4. Slovenia (Fifa ranking: 46)

Soccer - UEFA European Championship Qualifying - Group E - Slovenia v England - Stozice Stadium Source: PA Archive/Press Association Images

Slovenia will almost certainly finish third, with Estonia three points behind them but with a markedly inferior goal difference (their head-to-head record is identical).

5. Hungary (Fifa ranking: 33)

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Greece Hungary Euro Soccer Source: AP/Press Association Images

Hungary have finished third in their group and may yet qualify automatically as the best third-place team depending on results elsewhere.

6. Sweden (Fifa ranking: 45)

Soccer - UEFA European Under-21 Championship - Final - Sweden v Portugal - Eden Stadium Source: EMPICS Sport

Sweden are nearly certain to finish third unless they beat Moldova and Russia lose to Montenegro in the final round of games, which would take the Swedes to second and put the Russians in the playoff.

7. Croatia (Fifa ranking: 16)

Brazil Soccer WCup Croatia Mexico Source: Petr David Josek

One of the more uncertain outcomes, Croatia need to beat Malta and hope Norway don’t win in Italy to avoid third place and a playoff spot.

8. Denmark (Fifa ranking: 28)

Mideast Qatar Handball World Championship Source: AP/Press Association Images

Denmark have finished third in their group, and so, will definitely be one of the sides in the playoffs.

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About the author:

Paul Fennessy

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