Search icon


10th Oct 2022

How Ireland can get a Euro 2024 play-off place after nightmare draw

Robert Redmond

Ireland Euro 2024 playoff

Ireland received a nightmare qualification draw for Euro 2024.

The Republic of Ireland have been drawn into an extremely difficult qualification group for Euro 2024. Ireland were landed in Group B alongside the Netherlands, France, Greece and Gibraltar.

Stephen Kenny said following the draw in Frankfurt that Ireland would need to do something ‘extraordinary’ to finish in the top two, and he’s right.

If the Boys in Green don’t pull off a miracle, however, here is how they can still reach the tournament in Germany even if they finish behind the Netherlands, France and Greece.

Ireland euro 2024 group

Ireland’s Euro 2024 qualification campaign.

Ireland begin their qualification campaign at home to France next March and end it in November 2023 away to the Netherlands.

They will play away to fourth seeds Greece next June. And they face a daunting double-header next September – away to France before facing the Netherlands in Dublin three days later.

The top two from each group qualify automatically for Euro 2024, which will be staged in Germany, but Ireland’s chances of doing so look remote.

The national team have won just four of their 21 competitive games under Kenny.

There have been some encouraging signs, but France and the Netherlands can select from a significantly more talented pool of footballers.

Almost all of their players are operating at a higher level than their Irish counterparts. Ireland appear to be in a two-way fight with Greece to finish third.

In truth, Kenny’s team are paying the price for their poor performance in the Uefa Nations League, which directly impacts the seeding for the Euro 2024 qualification groups.

But there may still be a back door route for Ireland to get a play-off place if they cannot topple France or Holland.

Ireland could get a play-off place for Euro 2024.

The top two from each group will qualify automatically for Euro 2024, alongside tournament hosts Germany. This leaves three places to be filled, which will be decided by the Nations League play-offs in March 2024.

The winners of each group in Nations League A, B and C are guaranteed a play-off place.

If these teams all qualify automatically, their place will go to the next-best ranked side. If there aren’t enough non-qualified teams in the same league, then the selection process moves down to the next league, ending with League D.

The Netherlands and Greece, who are in Ireland’s group, are guaranteed play-off places thanks to their performances in the Nations League.

So, for example, if every team from League A qualifies automatically, their play-off places will be filled by the best-ranked teams from League B who have not qualified for Euro 2024. Ireland are ranked 26th overall in the Nations League, and 10th in League B.

So, Ireland’s chances of getting a play-off place will be increased by the teams ranked above them qualifying directly for the tournament. The more of these sides that finish in the top two of their groups, the better for Ireland.

If, for example, the top two seeded teams from each qualification group qualified directly for the tournament, then Ireland would get a play-off spot.

The play-off tournament will be a one-leg semi-final and final. (And, again, the places are decided by Nations League rankings – so Ireland could, in theory, finish bottom of their qualification group and end up in the play-offs).

However, even if Ireland reach the play-offs, their record in such matches is poor. So, no matter which route they take to Euro 2024, Kenny’s must greatly improve their results.

Related links.

WATCH: Liverpool BOTTLED the title race 🤬 | Who will win the Premier League?