The group stage of European World Cup qualifying is complete, with only the playoffs left to decide the final three places at Qatar 2022.
QUALIFIED: Germany, Denmark, Belgium, France, Croatia, Spain, Serbia, England, Switzerland, Netherlands
PLAYOFFS: Scotland, Wales, Czech Republic, Austria, Russia, North Macedonia, sweden, Portugal, Poland, Italy, Ukraine, Turkey
– UEFA World Cup playoff system explained
– World Cup 2022 qualifying: How it works around the world
Here’s how the 10 groups played out.
A stunning turnaround in Lisbon as Portugal threw away an early lead and a direct place at the World Cup finals.
Renato Sanches netted in two minutes, only for Dusan Tadic to equalize just after the half hour. And the real drama came in the 90th minute, as Aleksandar Mitrovic scored the goal to win the group.
Portugal are seeded in the playoff draw.
Spain had a worrying time against Sweden, needing a point to advance to the finals, before Alvaro Morata calmed the nerves with what proved to be an 86th-minute winner.
Spain go direct the the World Cup finals, while Sweden enter the playoffs.
Sweden are seeded in the playoff draw.
Switzerland scored three second-half goals at home Bulgaria to get the 3-0 win they needed to put pressure on Italy.
The European champions couldn’t respond, held to a goalless draw away to Northern Ireland.
It means Switzerland qualify for the World Cup and, just like in qualifying for the 2018 edition, Italy must go through the playoffs. Roberto Mancini’s team will be seeded in those playoffs.
France had sealed their place in the finals on Saturday, so on the last day it was all about the runners-up spot.
Finland had it in their own hands, but they fell to a 2-0 loss at home to France.
That opened the door for Ukraine, who won 2-0 away to Bosnia and Herzegovina to steal into second place. They will be unseeded in the playoffs.
Belgium qualified for the World Cup with their 3-1 win at home to Estonia at the weekend.
Wales and Czech Republic were already assured of a playoff place via the UEFA Nations League so the last day was about finishing second and hopefully being seeded in that draw.
Wales were losing at home to Belgium, but Kieffer Moore earned the 1-1 draw which confirmed the Welsh would be one of the best runners-up.
Although the Czechs beat Estonia 2-0, they will be unseeded in the playoffs.
Denmark qualified but missed out on finishing with a 100% record after defeat to Scotland in their last game.
That victory was crucial for Scotland, and it means they will be seeded in the playoff draw.
Austria didn’t finish inside the top two, but are Guaranteed of being unseeded in the playoffs as a UEFA Nations League group winner.
Netherlands finally booked their place in the World Cup finals, but it took two late goals to be absolutely sure.
The Dutch would have been knocked out had Norway scored in Eindhoven, but goals from Steven Bergwijn and Memphis Depay in the last six minutes sealed safe passage.
Turkey held on to second place ahead of Norway with a 2-1 win in Montenegro, but they will be unseeded in the playoffs.
Croatia got the win they needed against Russia in split to climb above their visitors and top the group.
Fedor Kudryashov scored an own goal in the 81st minute to give Croatia and 1-0 win.
Russia will have to go through the playoffs, where they will be seeded.
England cruised to the World Cup on the final day, winning 10-0 away to San Marino.
But it wasn’t such good news for Poland, who had already qualified for the playoffs but lost their final match 2-1 at home to Hungary.
That meant defeat Poland would be unseeded in the playoffs.
Germany had already secured their place in October, leaving the playoff place up for grabs this month.
North Macedonia were in danger of throwing it away, drawing 1-1 at home to Iceland, before two goals from Eljif Elmas gave them victory and a place in the playoffs.
However, North Macedonia will be unseeded in the playoff draw so face an away semifinal.
HOW THE PLAYOFFS WORK
The 10 runners up from the groups are joined by the best two UEFA Nations League group winners not to have finished in the top two of their qualifying group.
We now know that Austria and whoever misses out on the top two from Group E between Czech Republic and Wales will qualify via the Nations League.
The playoffs, to be played in March 2022, will be seeded by qualifying points, with the two UEFA Nations League teams unseeded. The draw takes place on Friday, Nov. 26.
– Portugal could face Italy in World Cup playoffs
Seeded teams will be drawn at home against unseeded teams, to play one-legged semifinals.
SEEDED: Portugal, Scotland, Italy, Russia, Sweden, Wales
UNSEEDED: Turkey, Poland, North Macedonia, Ukraine, Austria, Czech Republic
The finals will see the winners of SF1 play SF2, SF3 vs. SF4 and SF5 vs. SF6. There will be a draw, also on Nov. 26, to determine the home team in each final path.