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The Laird

Season Ticket 2017-2018
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    Northern Ireland OWC

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  1. Central America tour

    I suspect that when you get your ticket and convert the local currency to GBP that you may change your mind on which FA is doing the milking........................
  2. Central America tour

    Would love it more if we beat Panama who then go to Russia and...............
  3. Central America tour

    Talk to David at Portrush Travel. He is extremely knowledgeable and will be able to advise you on the options.
  4. UEFA considering international leagues

    To be fair I initially read it exactly as you did (and I suspect most others apart from UEFA) and it was only following the examples that highlighted the difference.
  5. UEFA considering international leagues

    I've read the document and think my assertion above is still valid. Page 16 of 89 Bottom up process D to A Group winners qualify for the playoffs Group winners already qualified are replaced by the next highest ranked. So my understanding is that League B say 2 Group winners are already qualified then they are replaced by the next 2 best sides not qualified. Then move to league A - say all 4 winners are through and only 1 non qualified team left. They get the next 3 best not already in playoffs B to D. Am I missing something? Above by Gary, I have messed up editing again! I think the text of page 16 is at odds with the examples they show. Have you followed any of their example scenarios through? They show the process in step by step detail and the next highest ranked do not "directly" replace the missing winners. I suppose UEFA mean the missing team is replaced in the play offs by the next highest but not necessarily in the specific slot? Anyway following their scenario 1 you would expect from the initial text that in C next best ranked Norway would replace already qualified Denmark in the one open slot. Similarly in B you expect Bosnia, Wales and Turkey to replace the 3 qualified teams. (notice that you and we are ranked 11 and 12 ). In effect they appear to select all the teams who make the play offs before filling the slots, resulting in their example with Albania (not Norway) in the C play offs and Wales, Turkey and NI (not Bosnia) in the B play offs. Scenario 1 starts about page 20, they have the final 16 teams determined by page 37 but it is around pages 40 to 43 before this draw for allocation becomes apparent. Same sort of thing happens in scenarios 2 and 3.
  6. UEFA considering international leagues

    Near enough but not quite, there is a slightly unusual twist in that it is only the group B winners who automatically enter the B play offs. So say two of the best 4 not already qualified are group winners then the two who are not winners go into a play off but which one is not yet determined. In the example 1) above the next ranked two who you would have thought logically enter the A play offs join the first 2 and there is a draw to see which two of the non group winners go into the A play offs and which the B play offs. Group winners are protected in that they cannot play a team from a higher league. If all 12 As qualify the slots are filled from below, in the UEFA example it ended up 2 from B and 2 from C. Almost all the possibilities are covered here if you can wade your through it! https://uefa.app.box.com/v/UNL/file/226762295443
  7. UEFA considering international leagues

    Just an update here. Northern Ireland are in League B as expected. the Republic have also qualified for League B. My understanding of the draw is that the 12 teams in League B will be seeded based on this month's UEFA ranking. So 3 pots of 4 countries. NI are currently 20th in the UEFA rankings but will drop to 21st if Bosnia win or draw with Estonia tonight. The Republic will most likely finish in 19th. Thus if Bosnia win or draw there is a 1 in 4 chance of NI & RoI being in the same Nations League group next Autumn. If Bosnia lose then we cannot meet. Above from Gary, messed up trying to edit a typo Yes, Bosnia overtake and we are in pot 3. Pot 1 Austria Wales Russia Slovakia Pot 2 Sweden Ukraine RoI Bosnia 25% chance of RoI 50% chance of either one of Russia and Ukraine as they are kept apart. Finishing 1st or 2nd gets seeding pot 2 for the EURO2020 qualifying draw. 1st promoted to League A, 3rd relegated to League B. Finishing position also determines the play off ranking for those teams who do not qualify for the EUROs.
  8. UEFA considering international leagues

    Well UEFA have published this http://www.uefa.com/uefanationsleague/news/newsid=2079553.html#/ I will leave it for others to decide if it is suitable for eejits.............
  9. UEFA considering international leagues

    Some form of official launch today. Draw is 24th January. EURO play offs are one leg only, highest finishers at home in the semis, final is a draw for venue. Also the uncertainty about how the play off slots are filled when teams have already qualified has been cleared up.
  10. UEFA considering international leagues

    The main point according to UEFA seems to be a way of making "friendlies" a bit more competitive, filling out the calendar and providing some more balanced fixtures for the minnows. The cynics among us would suggest that there is financial gain behind it all. The Nations League is to run every two years in the autumn following each Euro or World Cup with the top four competition in the following June. It is not known yet if the second edition will provide play off spots for the World Cup. I would suspect not, I cannot imagine FIFA would be in favour. The top four tournament in June 2019 determines the winner of the league only, it does not give the winners a Euro place, the A division has play offs in the following March along with the other divisions. The timing of the play offs for the Euros does raise questions, well over a year after the league and only 3 months before the tournament. As turin says knowing the ranking for the play offs before the qualifying tournament could raise issues of integrity. I remember the Irish League format some years back leaving Bangor(?) needing to lose on the final day to avoid relegation. What happens if all division A countries qualify for the Euros? That is quite possible. Who fills the places? There is potential for a lower ranked non qualifier from division B to get play off opponents from division C while the top 4 non qualifiers have to play each other. Some questions still to be answered.
  11. UEFA considering international leagues

    Following Sunday we have now climbed to 24th in the UEFA rankings which would be the lowest ranked team in League B. Still a lot of changes to go, only 2 wins gap between 12th and 25th but just for interest our current possible opponents would be; From pot 1 Austria, B&H, Wales, RoI From pot 2 Netherlands, Slovakia, Sweden, Ukraine
  12. UEFA considering international leagues

    Absolutely correct, we have actually dropped places. Now top seeds in Division C which has 2 groups of 3 teams and 2 of 4 teams (probably will end up 1 group of 3 teams and 3 of 4 now Kosovo are in UEFA).
  13. UEFA considering international leagues

    A couple of points from the ranking link. If nothing changed the grouping with Norway, RoI and Wales is a seeding pot meaning we would not draw those teams, the opposition would be one from Cz, BaH, ROM and Slovakia as top seeds and one from POL. ICE, SWE and TUR as second seeds. Note the position of France. As they had no qualifiers to play and therefore no points from the EURO qualifiers their 2018 WC qualifiers count double and they will no doubt overtake us. Having said that when the EURO finals points are added we should at least overtake Norway and so effectively remain in Division B before the WC qualifiers start.
  14. UEFA considering international leagues

    It will all depend on how we do at the EUROs and in the qualifiers for Russia. The 2014 WC and qualifiers, EURO16 and qualifiers and 2018 WC qualifiers count in varying proportions to the ranking. I would say it is almost certainly going to be Division 2 or 3. As it sits now we are 24th and so the bottom seed in Div 2. But France did not play EURO qualifiers and because the 2018 ones count double for them they will almost certainly overtake us so we are in reality sitting as the top seed in Div 3. I hope that makes sense, the whole thing and everything to do with it seems to be as complicated as they can make it.
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