UEFA Nations League


Ashfiq Islam, Staff Writer

The UEFA Nations Leagues’ inaugural season kicked off on Thursday, September 6th with ten matches being played at the time of this article being written. The newborn league can be considered a mini world cup, with teams from Europe only. One of the highlights about the UEFA NL is that every European country that is under UEFA’s corporation plays in the league. That means teams like Italy and the Netherlands, who didn’t qualify for the World Cup, will be playing their first national team games since the WC. It also means small teams like Wales get a chance to show off their skills in a competition of such high caliber. This league also serves as a gateway to the Euro 2020 which is also under UEFA.

World cup champions, France, played the previous World Cup winners, Germany in the first matchday of the Nations League. The game ended in a dry 0-0 draw. Surprisingly, led by Gareth Bale, Wales defeated the Republic of Ireland 4-1. The current top goal scorers consist of Bozhidar Kraev of Bulgaria and Stefan Johansen of Norway. Surprisingly, many of the smaller countries are doing well.

The competition lasts from September 2018 to June 2019. The league phase ends on November 20th and the finals start on the fifth of June and ends on the ninth of June. In all, there are 55 teams in the competition. The league is a biennial competition, meaning it’s held every other year. UEFA also released the prize money for all the groups and group winners. The prizes are as listed below.

The solidarity fees per team are scaled by league:

  • League A: €1,500,000
  • League B: €1,000,000
  • League C: €750,000
  • League D: €500,000

In addition, the group winners of each league will receive the following bonus fees:

  • League A group winners: €1,500,000
  • League B group winners: €1,000,000
  • League C group winners: €750,000
  • League D group winners: €500,000

The four group winners of League A, which will participate in the Nations League Finals, will also receive the following bonus fees based on performance:

  • Winners: €4,500,000
  • Runners-up: €3,500,000
  • Third place: €2,500,000
  • Fourth place: €1,500,000

This means that the maximum amount of solidarity and bonus fees is €7.5 million for a team from League A, €2 million for a team from League B, €1.5 million for a team from League C, and €1 million for a team from League D.