The drama is guaranteed. That’s typically been the case for the final round of group-stage matches in any major tournament and it will be no different at Euro 2021.
The top two teams from each group at Euro 2021 receive automatic berths to the Round of 16. The four best third-place finishers will join them.
In cases that teams are tied on points, tiebreakers come into play and it starts with head-to-head matchups between the teams tied on points. We could even have three-way ties in two of the groups. That should be fun.
Here are the updated scenarios for each team entering the final matchday (X = teams that have booked a ticket to the knockout rounds). The final matches in each group are played simultaneously to ensure competitive integrity.
Euro 2021: How each team can advance
Group A Scenarios
How Italy (6 pts) can advance:
- Win or Draw vs. Wales: Italy has already clinched a spot in the knockout round. But a win or draw clinches top spot in the group.
- Loss vs. Wales: Italy finishes in second place. Wales takes first.
How Wales (4 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Italy: The Welsh would finish with the top spot in the group.
- Draw vs. Italy: A tie secures second place for Wales.
- Loss vs. Italy: A loss could still see Wales advance as the 2nd place team if the Swiss lose or draw. A Swiss victory will force tiebreakers to come into play.
How Switzerland (1 pt) can advance:
- Win vs. Turkey: The Swiss need a win vs. Turkey to dream of a 3rd-place berth or even 2nd place if Wales lose big.
- Draw vs. Turkey: They will all but officially be eliminated.
- Loss vs. Turkey: Eliminated from contention.
How Turkey (0 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Switzerland: The Turks need to beat the Swiss by as wide a margin as possible and then hope results in other groups go their way to qualify as one of the four best 3rd-place teams.
- Loss or Draw vs. Switzerland: Eliminated from contention.
Group B Scenarios
How Belgium (6 pts) can advance:
- Win or Draw vs. Finland: Belgium has already qualified and would clinch top spot in Group B with a win or draw.
- Loss vs. Finland: An unexpected defeat against Finland and the Belgians can finish 2nd (if Russia draws or loses) or even drop to 3rd place depending on tiebreakers (if Russia wins).
How Russia (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Denmark: Russia will advance, at worst as the 3rd place team (depending on tiebreakers if Finland beat Belgium).
- Draw vs. Denmark: Russia advances as 2nd place (Finland loses or draws) or 3rd place team (Finland wins).
- Loss vs. Denmark: It would come down to tiebreakers, but Russia would really need to make it a narrow loss. A loss by two or more goals and the Russians would be officially eliminated.
How Finland (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Belgium: The Finns can still win Group B coupled with a Russia draw or loss. A Russia win would see a three-way tiebreaker come into play to determine placement.
- Draw vs. Belgium: A tie could see Finland go through as 2nd place (Russia loss) or 3rd place (Russia draw or win).
- Loss vs. Belgium: In case of a loss, the Finns need to hope that it was a narrow defeat, and that the Denmark-Russia result goes their way in order to have hope of qualifying as one of the best 3rd-place teams. There could be a three-way tiebreaker with three teams on three points.
How Denmark (0 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Russia: The Danes can still finish in 2nd place (Finland loss + three-way goal-difference tiebreaker in matches among the three) or 3rd place if Finland win or draw.
- Draw or Loss vs. Russia: Denmark are mathematically eliminated.
Group C Scenarios
|4. North Macedonia||0||2||0||2||0||2||5||-3|
How the Netherlands (6 pts) can advance:
- Win, Draw or Loss vs. North Macedonia: The Netherlands are mathematically assured of going through as the No. 1 team in Group C given the wins over Ukraine and Austria.
How Ukraine (3 pts) can advance:
- Win or Draw vs. Austria: Ukraine advances as 2nd place team.
- Loss vs. Austria: Ukraine needs to hope results in other groups fall their way to qualify as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
How Austria (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Ukraine: Austria advances as 2nd-place team.
- Draw vs. Ukraine: Austria will hope four points are enough to get through as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
- Loss vs. Ukraine: Three points could be enough for the Austrians to go through as one of the best 3rd-place teams if they can make it a narrow loss against Ukraine and results in other groups go their way.
North Macedonia (0 pts) cannot advance:
- Win vs. Netherlands: North Macedonia loses out on the head-to-head tiebreakers against Austria and Ukraine given their losses against both.
- Draw or Loss vs. Netherlands: North Macedonia will finish in last place
Group D Scenarios
|1. Czech Republic||4||2||1||0||1||3||1||+2|
How Czech Republic (4 pts) can advance:
- Win or Draw vs. England: Czechs advance as 1st place team.
- Loss vs. England: Czechs can finish 2nd if Croatia-Scotland draw or Scotland wins. If Croatia wins, 2nd place will come down to goal differential. If the Czechs dropped to 3rd place, they could still potentially go through as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
How England (4 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Czech Republic: England wins the group.
- Draw vs. Czech Republic: England finishes second in the group.
- Loss vs. Czech Republic: England finishes 2nd place in case of a Croatia-Scotland draw or a Croatia win. If Scotland wins, 2nd place will come down to goal differential. The English can still potentially go through as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
How Croatia (1 pt) can advance:
- Win vs. Scotland: Croatia goes through as the 2nd place team (based on goal differential if Czechs lose) or they can potentially qualify as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
- Draw vs. Scotland: Two points could somehow be enough depending on results in other groups and goal differential (namely Spain and Poland losses and a Switzerland-Turkey tie).
- Loss vs. Scotland: Croatia is eliminated.
How Scotland (1 pt) can advance:
- Win vs. Croatia: Scotland go through as the 2nd place team (based on goal differential if England lose) or the Scots can potentially qualify as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
- Draw or Loss vs. Croatia: Scotland is eliminated as 4th-place finisher.
Group E Scenarios
How Sweden (4 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Poland: Sweden wins the group.
- Draw vs. Poland: Sweden can win the group if Slovakia fails to win. Sweden would finish 2nd in case of a Slovakia win. If Spain wins, it would come down to tiebreakers.
- Loss vs. Poland: Sweden would come in 3rd place if Spain or Slovakia wins. Three-way tiebreakers would come into play in the case of a Slovakia-Spain draw, but at worst Sweden would have a chance at qualifying as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
How Slovakia (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Spain: Slovakia qualifies as 1st (Sweden draw) or 2nd place (Sweden win), depending on Sweden’s result.
- Draw vs. Spain: Slovakia can finish anywhere from 1st to 3rd place if there’s a three-way tie on four points with a Poland win. A Poland loss or tie would see Slovakia finish 2nd.
- Loss vs. Spain: Slovakia would be eliminated as 4th-place finishers if Poland wins. Slovakia could still hope to be among the best 3rd-place teams if Poland loses or draws.
How Spain (2 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Slovakia: Spain can finish in 1st place in case of a Sweden loss. Goal differential would come into play in case of a Sweden tie. Spain would finish 2nd if Sweden wins.
- Draw vs. Slovakia: Spain would be eliminated if Poland also wins. If Poland draws or loses, Spain can still hope that three points would be enough to see it through as one of the best 3rd-place teams.
- Loss vs. Slovakia: Spain would need a miracle to qualify: a Poland loss, a Switzerland-Turkey draw, a Croatia-Scotland draw, while also hoping that their goal differential is not worse than Croatia’s and Switzerland’s in that instance.
How Poland (1 pt) can advance:
- Win vs. Sweden: Poland can potentially finish top of the group via a three-way tiebreaker in case of a Slovakia-Spain draw. A Slovakia or Spain win would see them finish in 2nd place.
- Draw vs. Sweden: Poland would need a miracle set of results to go their way similar to the Spain scenario above. That would include a Spain loss to Slovakia that allows Poland to finish in third place in the group on goal differential.
- Loss vs. Sweden: Officially eliminated from contention.
Group F Scenarios
How France (4 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Portugal: France finishes top of the group.
- Draw vs. Portugal: Can finish in 1st or 2nd place depending on the Germany-Hungary result.
- Loss vs. Portugal: France will finish 2nd or 3rd depending on the Germany-Hungary result. The French would win the tiebreaker against Germany. A tiebreaker against Hungary would come down to goal differential.
How Germany (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. Hungary: Germany could finish top of the group if Portugal win or draw. Germany would finish second if Portugal lose (i.e. France win).
- Draw vs. Hungary: Germany could finish 2nd (Portugal loss or draw) or 3rd (Portugal win).
- Loss vs. Hungary: Germany would be eliminated if Portugal wins or draws. If Portugal loses, Germany would finish in 3rd place and with a shot to qualify as one of the best third-placed teams.
How Portugal (3 pts) can advance:
- Win vs. France: Portugal can finish in 1st place (Germany draw or loss) or 2nd place (Germany win) depending on Germany’s result.
- Draw vs. France: Portugal can finish in 2nd (Germany loss) or 3rd place (Germany win or draw) depending on Germany’s result.
- Loss vs. France: Portugal would be eliminated with a Hungary win. Portugal would finish in 3rd place with a chance to advance if Hungary draws or loses.
How Hungary (1 pt) can advance:
- Win vs. Germany: Hungary can qualify as the 2nd-place team if Portugal loses or if France loses (latter scenario would be based on goal differential). The Hungarians finish in 3rd place if Portugal-France is a draw.
- Draw or Loss vs. Germany: Hungary is eliminated.