November 19, 2020 – What awaits Croatia in 2022-23 Nations League? A look at the busy schedule ahead for the 2018 World Cup finalists.
Even after losing to Portugal on Tuesday night at Poljud, the Croatia national team has secured a spot in the elite Nations League group in the next edition of this competition, which will be played in 2022.
Croatia will remain in League A, and so far, 10 national teams are known that can be their rivals in this group.
In addition to France and Portugal, against whom they competed this fall, the elite group will include Italy, the Netherlands, Poland, Belgium, Denmark, England, Spain, and Germany.
It remains unclear whether Ukraine or Switzerland will be in this group, as their last round match of Group 4 has been postponed due to coronavirus, and we now must wait for UEFA’s decision. If the match ends at 3:0 for Switzerland, they will remain in League A while Ukraine will drop to League B.
Wales, Austria, the Czech Republic, and Hungary have been promoted from League B to League A for 2022, while Sweden, Bosnia & Herzegovina, and Iceland have been relegated.
The timing of the 2022 Nations League, however, will be quite interesting, namely, because the World Cup in Qatar is played from November 21 to December 18, 2022. Thus, UEFA was forced to shift the calendar compared to the previous two Nations League editions.
As June is free because the World Cup is played in late autumn in 2022, it was decided that four Nations League rounds will be played that month, and two more in the second half of September. The national teams will then gather at the end of October 2022 or the beginning of November, when preparations for the World Cup will begin.
So, what’s next for Croatia?
With just over 200 days to go to the Euros next summer, that’s hardly the only competition on Croatia’s mind…
UEFA’s preliminary draw for the 2022 World Cup will occur on December 7, 2020, at 18:00 CET in Zurich.
Thus, the European qualifiers will feature five groups with six teams and five groups with five teams. All teams within a group will play each at home-and-away between March and November 2021, meaning Croatia could already play two or three World Cup qualifiers in March!
To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page.