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How does the UEFA Nations League work?

The draw for the new Nations League is due to be held on Wednesday at UEFA’s headquarters in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Here, Press Association Sport answers the questions on the format and what the new competition will bring.

What is the UEFA Nations League?

It is a new international competition which will replace most friendlies with competitive matches.

The Nations League is designed to allow teams to play against those who are equally ranked.

It is made up of four mini-leagues, which each contain four groups.

There is also the chance to qualify for Euro 2020 with the play-offs for the tournament due to involve the 16 Nations League group winners.

If they have already qualified for Euro 2020 the next best-ranked team in their league will go into the play-offs.

Each league has a path of its own, and will consist of two single-leg semi-finals and a one-off final. The winner of each path qualifies for EURO 2020.

Where are the home nations in the draw?

England are in League A and will be in pot 2 with France, Switzerland and Italy.

Wales and Northern Ireland will be in League B and pot 1 and pot 3 respectively with Scotland in pot 1 of League C.

The Republic of Ireland are in League B and pot 2.

How does the league work?

The 55 nations will be divided into four mini-leagues (A, B, C, D) with the allocation determined by each country’s UEFA ranking in November 2017.

Those with the highest ranking will go into League A and so on and each league will be split into groups of three or four teams, playing home and away.

The four group winners of League A qualify for the UEFA Nations League Finals in June 2019.

The winners of Leagues B, C and D are promoted but those who finish bottom of A, B and C will be relegated. The next season is 2020/21.

When does it start?

There are 138 league fixtures which start with match day one between September 6th and 8th 2018.

The draw for the finals is in December with the finals, which includes semi-finals and a third-placed game, held between June 5th-9th, 2019.

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