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2014 World Cup: play-off draw


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2014 World Cup: play-off draw

The eight European teams to battle it out for four spots in next year’s World Cup finals in Brazil found out on Monday who they will meet in next month’s play-offs following the draw in Zurich.

Portugal – who have had to qualify for the last three major tournaments via the playoffs – were drawn against Sweden.

Ukraine will face former champions France, 2004 European champions Greece will lock horns with Romania while Iceland, who have never played at the finals of a major tournament, take on Croatia to complete the four play-off lineup.

Ukraine finished runners up behind England in their qualifying group.

They square up against France who are just one spot above the eastern Europeans in the FIFA world rankings at 21.

But the Ukrainians have a terrible record against Les Blue and in 7 meetings have drawn three and lost four.

Ukraine will be bidding to reach only their second World Cup finals – their first came in 2006 when they reached the quarter-finals.

France won the World Cup in 1998 on home soil and were runners up in 2006.

The last time France missed a major tournament was the 1994 World Cup in the USA.

The first match is in Ukraine with the second leg at the Stade de France

The Portugal and Sweden match-up will pit two of world football’s most exciting players in Cristiano Ronaldo and Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

The two sides have met 15 times with Sweden boasting the better statistic with six wins to Portugals three. The pair have drawn six times.

However Sweden have not beaten Portugal in seven matches since 1984.

The first legs will be played on Nov. 15 and the return legs on Nov.19.

Full play off draw (team drawn first to play first leg at home)

Portugal – Sweden
Ukraine – France
Greece – Romania
Croatia – Iceland

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