Euro 2020 draw: Republic of Ireland manager McCarthy 'happy enough' with draw

Russia draw top-ranked Belgium in Euro 2020 qualifiers England paired with Czech Republic

Gareth Southgate's side, which this year unexpectedly reached the World Cup semifinals and advanced to the Nations League Final Four, was drawn alongside Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Kosovo. For the first time in the competition's history, the tournament will be hosted by more than two countries to mark its 60th anniversary.

England were given a seemingly straightforward path to Euro 2020 as they were drawn alongside the Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Montenegro and Kosovo for a qualifying campaign that will begin in March.

Holders Portugal also topped their group in the Nations League and will face Ukraine, Serbia, Lithuania and Luxembourg as they try and defend their title.

Northern Ireland were handed an extremely tough-looking draw and will face Holland and Germany, as well as Estonia and Belarus in Group C.

The top two from each group will qualify automatically but if the Three Lions do somehow fail in their group of five then they will go into a play off.

Dublin is a host city for the month-long tournament, which has been spread throughout 12 European cities and now Ireland must attempt to finish inside the top two in their group to guarantee their place at the next edition of the Euros.

David Horn  imago sport
David Horn imago sport

Azerbaijan were initially drawn in Ireland's group but as they are also a host nation - and Ireland and Denmark were already in the group - Gibraltar were drawn as an alternative. The Azerbaijani capital Baku has group stage and a quarterfinal match in 2020.

Group H: France, Iceland, Turkey, Albania, Moldova, Andorra.

Elsewhere three-times champions Spain were drawn in Group F with Sweden, Norway and Romania.

Our Belgian trio of Toby Alderweireld, Mousa Dembele and Jan Vertonghen could face young winger Anthony Georgiou when the Red Devils meet Cyprus in Group I. Russia, Scotland, Kazakhstan and San Marino are also in their pool.

The winners and runners up from each of the twelve groups will progress to the 24-team tournament. Ireland ended 2018 with relegation from the Nations League.

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