Belfast Telegraph

UK Website Of The Year

Home Sport Football

Wales or France for Northern Ireland in Euro 2016 last 16

Published 22/06/2016

It is either Wales or France next for Michael O'Neill's Northern Ireland
It is either Wales or France next for Michael O'Neill's Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland's last-16 passage has been sealed and they will play either Wales or hosts France this weekend in the first round of the Euro 2016 knockout fixtures.

Michael O'Neill's men are already assured of one of the best third-placed spots because they have a better goal difference than Albania and Turkey.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at the scenarios which would see them meet Chris Coleman's Wales in Paris on Saturday and how they could end up facing Les Bleus near their base in Lyon the following day.

IF TURKEY GO OUT, IT'S WALES V NORTHERN IRELAND

According to UEFA, the only way Northern Ireland would ever have faced the winner of Group B, in this instance Wales, was if the third-placed teams in Group A and Group D both failed to claim one of the four berths available. Group A's Albania are guaranteed to finish below the Turks because they have scored fewer goals so if Fatih Terim's Group D side go out, so do the Albanians.

Turkey only have three points to their credit and a win for either Sweden or the Republic of Ireland on Wednesday night would see them eliminated, provided any Swedish win over Belgium is not by four goals or more and Portugal record a positive result.

IF TURKEY GO THROUGH, IT'S WALES V TURKEY AND NORTHERN IRELAND V FRANCE

Northern Ireland's most likely last-16 opponent ever since they defeated Ukraine in Lyon last week has always looked like being a meeting with their hosts for the past few weeks. However, for that to now occur, O'Neill's team need to see Turkey advance, ensuring they will travel to Paris to meet Wales.

Read More

From Belfast Telegraph