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Euro 2016 Qualifiers Preview: Groups A-D

Another round of Euro 2016 qualifiers is upon us as we go into the second half of the qualification group stage. Here’s how things stand in Groups A-D heading into Matchday 6.

Group A:

  1. Czech Republic – 13pts
  2. Iceland – 12pts
  3. Netherlands – 7pts
  4. Turkey – 5pts
  5. Latvia – 3pts
  6. Kazakhstan – 1pts

Netherlands finds themselves in sort of a bind after a couple of disappointing results. The bronze medalists from last summer’s World Cup has only two wins and and one draw in five games. Luckily for them, they are taking on Latvia on Friday, a team they beat 6-0 at home.

Iceland and the Czech Republic square off for the top position in the standings, and although the Czechs won the first meeting 2-1, Iceland has two straight wins at home.

Turkey will travel to Kazakhstan to take on the last-placed Kazakhs. Turkey and the Netherlands are playing must-win games for the rest of the qualification stage if they are to have any chance to catch up to the Czech Republic and Iceland.

Schedule:

June 12: Kazakhstan – Turkey

June 12: Iceland – Czech Republic

June 12: Latvia – Netherlands

Group B:

  1. Belgium – 11pts
  2. Wales  – 11pts
  3. Israel – 9pts
  4. Cyprus – 6pts
  5. Bosnia and Herzegovina – 5pts
  6. Andorra – 0pts

Belgium and Wales are both undefeated so far, but that could change as they go head to head at Cardiff City Stadium on Friday. The Belgians has scored 13 goals in five games and have only allowed a single goal. Last time these teams met, it ended in a scoreless draw.

Israel travels to Bosnia and Herzegovina and will be looking for another win in order to keep up with Belgium and Wales in the standings. They won comfortably 3-0 over the Bosnians in the previous meeting, but they are coming off two straight losses against Wales and Belgium.

Cyprus is taking on Andorra, and is most likely heading home with three points. Cyprus crushed Andorra 5-0 when they played back in March.

Schedule:

June 12: Wales – Belgium

June 12: Bosnia and Herzegovina – Israel

June 12: Andorra – Cyprus

Group C:

  1. Slovakia – 15pts
  2. Spain – 12pts
  3. Ukraine – 9pts
  4. Belarus – 4pts
  5. FYR Macedonia – 3pts
  6. Luxembourg – 1pts

Slovakia is one of two nations that have five straight wins in the qualification group stage, the other one being England. It’s been an impressive run for the Slovaks, and the 2-1 win over Spain has been the highlight so far. On Sunday they will host FYR Macedonia, a team they beat 2-0 in the first meeting in Skopje.

Spain will travel to Borisov to take on Belarus. Despite the loss against Slovakia, Spain is doing fine so far and have scored the most goals in the group (14) and only allowing three. The Spaniards beat Belarus 3-0 in their first meeting after goals by Sergio Busquets, Pedro Rodriguez and Isco.

Ukraine will host Luxembourg and the last time these two came together, the Ukrainians won 3-0 against a sad Luxembourg side that has allowed 14 goals in five games and only scored three.

Schedule:

June 14: Ukraine – Luxembourg

June 14:  Belarus – Spain

June 14: Slovakia – FYR Macedonia

Group D:

  1. Poland – 11pts
  2. Germany – 10pts
  3. Scotland – 10pts
  4. Ireland – 8pts
  5. Georgia – 3pts
  6. Gibraltar – 0pts

The race in Group D is wide open. Four nations have the chance to top the group after this round of games. Poland leads the group after three wins and two draws, including a 2-0 win over World Cup winners Germany.

Poland has scored 16 goals in five games while allowing three. Captain Robert Lewandowski (Bayern Munich) leads the team with four goals. Poland will host Georgia on Saturday in Warsaw. Poland won the first meeting 4-0.

Ireland and Scotland also square off. The first meeting ended in a 1-0 win for Scotland in Glasgow. Now they will head to Aviva Stadium in Dublin to take on an Irish side that is coming off a 1-1 draw with group leaders Poland.

Germany has a date with Gibraltar. This is Gibraltar’s first qualification appearance, and seeing that they are a tiny nation, it’s no surprise that they are at the bottom of the standings. They have only scored a single goal while allowing 27. Last time out, Germany beat them 4-0 at home.

Schedule:

June 13: Poland – Georgia

June 13: Ireland – Scotland

June 13: Gibraltar – Germany

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