Italy will face North Macedonia in the semi-finals of the qualifiers for the last three European World Cup tickets in their country. The winner of that match will play against the winner of the match between Portugal and Turkey, with a World Cup ticket at stake. This determined the lottery in Zurich for the three “tracks”. This means that the European champions (Italy) or the 2016 European champions (Portugal) will miss the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
Italy missed the group win in Northern Ireland earlier this month, which is good for a direct qualification for the 2022 World Cup. National coach Roberto Mancini’s side did not go past 0-0 in Belfast. As a result, the World Cup ticket went to Switzerland, which defeated Bulgaria 4-0.
Portugal lost 2-1 to Serbia in the last group match in Lisbon, which won the World Cup ticket. In that match, Ajax player Dusan Tadic played a leading role with a goal and assist.
In Division A, Scotland plays Ukraine and Wales plays Austria. In Route B, Russia will compete with Poland and Sweden against the Czech Republic. In Route C, Italy and North Macedonia are linked and Portugal will compete with Turkey. The semi-finalists compete on their journey for a World Cup ticket.
Italy already knows that the possible final match of the World Cup ticket will take place in Portugal or Turkey. In Route A, Wales or Austria have the ground advantage in a potential final and in Route B, Russia or Poland could complete a potential final battle in their country.
The semi-finals will take place on March 24, 2022, after which the three finals will take place on March 29.
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