Tuesday’ Euro 2024 qualifiers:
Group A: Scotland vs Spain & Georgia vs Norway.
Group D: Türkiye vs Croatia & Wales vs Latvia.
Group I: Switzerland vs Israel, Romania vs Belarus & Kosovo vs Andorra.
Scotland vs Spain
Scotland have not began a qualification campaign with back-to-back wins since 2006 and, if they’re going to change that, the Tartan Army are going to witness a famous night.
On Saturday, the Dark Blues, in the end, saw off Cyprus 3-0 in Glasgow, with John McGinn breaking the deadlock, before substitute Scott McTominay scored twice in the final three minutes.
Steve Clarke guided Scotland to their first major tournament in 23 years at the most-recent Euros, before they missed out on the World Cup, beaten by Ukraine in the play-offs.
Home form has been key to this upturn in results, with Scotland losing just one of their last 15 competitive home games, but that record will be sorely put to the test here.
As for Spain, the Luis de la Fuente era got up and running on Saturday night as they also won 3-0 at home, beating Norway in Málaga.
Dani Olmo prodded home the opener at La Rosaleda, before Joselu came off the bench to bag a quick-fire brace on his international debut.
The Espanyol striker thereby becoming the first first Spaniard to score twice on his debut since Fernando Morientes in 1998.
This means la Roja have now won 23 successive European Championship qualifiers at home, dating back two decades.
The three-times European Champions are big favourites to top this group, but their new-look team will be put to the test here.
Spain are unbeaten in five meetings with Scotland, dating back to 1984, so will they silence Hampden?
Georgia vs Norway
Will this be the start of an historic qualification campaign for Georgia?
In 2020, the Crusaders came agonisingly close to reaching a maiden major tournament, ousted 1-0 by North Macedonia in the play-off final.
This time round, led by talisman Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, they’re even stronger, so are very hopeful of going all the way.
Last year, Willy Sagnol’s side were promoted to Nations League B, wining five of six matches.
This achievement means Georgia are guaranteed a play-off spot, but believe a top two finish is well within their grasp.
If they are going to upset the odds, home form will be key, starting with this clash in Batumi.
Norway meanwhile began their campaign on Saturday night, beaten 3-0 by Spain in Málaga.
The game was not as one-sided as that may suggest, with the Lions squandering numerous chances, before la Roja scored twice in the closing five minutes.
Ståle Solbakken’s country haven’t qualified for a major tournament since 2000, but certainly have the talent to change that.
Here though, they’ll travel almost 2,500 miles without talisman Erling Braut Håland, which is a massive blow.
Thus, can Georgia spring a surprise at Batumi Stadium?
Türkiye vs Croatia
Will either team claim three crucial points at Bursa Büyükşehir Belediye Stadyumu?
Croatia come into this one looking to bounce after after an extremely frustrating draw at the weekend.
On Saturday night, Zlatko Dalić's side looked set to beat Wales in their opener, taking the lead through Andrej Kramarić.
However, there was to be late drama in Split, with Wales snatching an equaliser with, pretty much, the last kick of the game.
The Blazers have qualified for each of the last five European Championships, and will compete in June’s Nations League Finals.
However, as a result of the latter, Croatia aren’t in qualifying action again until September, meaning a defeat here would leave them playing catch-up.
Türkiye meanwhile did make a winning start at the weekend, beating fierce rivals Armenia at Vazgen Sargsyan Republican Stadium.
Ozan Kabak’s own goal did put Armenia in front, but goals from Orkun Kökçü and Kerem Aktürkoğlu ensured the left Yerevan with all the points.
The Crescent-Stars are seeking to qualify for three successive Euros for the very first time, and Stefan Kuntz’s side are full of confident, having now won eight of their last 11 competitive fixtures.
So, backed by a raucous home support, will Türkiye claim a famous win in Bursa?
Wales vs Latvia
After earning a hard-fought point on the road at the weekend, it’s vitally important Wales back that up with a win here.
At the weekend, the Dragons looked set to slump to defeat in Croatia, trailing 1-0 going into the closing seconds.
However, with the last kick of the game, Connor Roberts’ long-throw was flicked on and poked home by Nathan Broadhead.
The Ipswich striker had only come on for his international debut 25 minutes earlier, but became an instant hero, sparking wild celebrations from the travelling support in Split.
Given that they’re in this tough group, alongside Croatia and Türkiye, every point is precious for Rob Page’s team, and that draw could prove crucial come November.
Back in Cardiff, Wales are unbeaten in eight home qualifiers, losing just one of the last 19, so will be confident of victory here.
Latvia meanwhile made their one and only major tournament appearance at Euro 2004, and have not come close to repeating that feat since.
Dainis Kazakevičs’ side did gain promotion from the Nations League’s bottom-tier last year, but have won just seven of their last 51 qualifiers.
On Wednesday, Latvia warmed up for this one across the Irish Sea, taking in the Republic of Ireland in a friendly.
The away side were beaten 3-2, following a credible display, with both Roberts Uldriķis and Artūrs Zjuzins scoring absolute screamers in Dublin.
These two have only ever met once before, Wales winning a friendly 2-0 in Rīga 19 years ago, and the majority of those inside the Cardiff City Stadium would take a repeat of that.
Switzerland vs Israel
Switzerland are odds-on favourites to top Group I, and they showed exactly why on matchday one.
At the weekend, Murat Yakın’s side smashed Belarus 5-0 at Stadion Karađorđe in Serbia.
Renato Steffen, who’d only ever scored one international goal before, bagged a hat-trick in the first half an hour, before Granit Xhaka from long-range and Zeki Amdouni secured the points.
The Rossocrociati have featured at five of the last seven European Championships, very much set to further improve that ratio in Germany next summer.
Israel meanwhile are hoping to qualify for a maiden major tournament as a UEFA member.
The Blues and Whites came into this campaign full of optimism, having been promoted to Nations League A back in September.
However, Alon Hazan’s side could only draw 1-1 with Kosovo in Tel Aviv at the weekend, with Dor Peretz’s equaliser salvaging a share of the spoils.
This will be a first meeting of these two teams for 14 years, with Switzerland clear favourites at Stade de Genève.
Romania vs Belarus
Will Romania start Euro 2024 qualifying with back-to-back wins?
On Saturday, goals from Dennis Man and Denis Alibec saw Edward Iordănescu’s team beat Andorra 2-0 at Estadi Nacional.
The Tricolours have featured at five European Championships, most-recently 2016, missing out on Euro 2020 after defeat to Iceland in the play-offs.
This time round, in a favourable group, Romania are confident of automatic qualification.
Belarus meanwhile were smashed 5-0 by Switzerland at the weekend at an eerily quite and empty Stadion Karađorđe.
The White Wings are now winless in 14 competitive matches, losing 11 of them.
Thus, the Romanian supporters inside Arena Națională will be expecting to have plenty of goals to cheer.
Kosovo vs Andorra
After making a positive start to qualifying on Saturday, will Kosovo claim all three points here?
At the weekend, Alain Giresse’s side held Israel to a 1-1 draw in Tel Aviv, taking the lead through an own goal.
This is a credible point on the road for the Dardanians, who now must back it up by winning this home game.
Andorra meanwhile were beaten 2-0 by Romania at Estadi Nacional on Saturday night.
Koldo Álvarez’s side have now won just five of their last 43 competitive games, these wins coming against Liechtenstein, San Marino and Moldova.
So, a home victory seems very likely at Fadil Vokrri Stadium.
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