With the Euro 2024 play-offs approaching, the Polish national football team faces a critical juncture. After drawing matches against Moldova and the Czech Republic, Poland now finds itself needing to navigate through the play-offs.
The Format of the Playoffs
The playoff format involves 12 teams divided into three paths, each culminating in a final. Teams will compete in individual semifinals and finals, adding to the intensity and unpredictability of the playoffs.
Poland's Ranking and Potential Opponents
Ranked 11th in the last Nations League, Poland will face off against lower-ranked teams that failed to qualify directly. Depending on the results of other qualifying groups, Poland could encounter formidable opponents such as Italy or Croatia. The most challenging scenario would pit Poland against Italy in the semifinals and potentially Croatia in the finals, while the easiest path might involve facing Estonia and Wales.
The Draw and Match Schedule
The play-off draw, scheduled for November 23, will determine Poland's path and opponents. This event is crucial as it will set the matches and host countries for these pivotal games. The play-offs are slated for March 21 (semifinals) and March 26 (finals) in 2024. However, the groups for the Euros will have already been drawn, with teams from the play-offs being added from the last basket as potential participants.
Nevertheless, national confidence remains high, with 70% of Poles believing their team will compete in the Euros. Sponsor STS has prepared a special promo code for fans betting on the national team's advancement. The code, "sts kod promocyjny", allows players to receive a doubled bonus from the bookmaker. Additionally, national team coach Michal Probierz assures that his squad will participate in next year's Euros in Germany.
Generational Change: A Slogan for Poles at Euro
The coach's primary objective is the team's rejuvenation. Michal Probierz is gradually phasing out players nearing the end of their careers in favor of younger talent. Recent acquisitions include Jakub Piotrowski from Bulgaria's Ludogorets and Karol Struski from Cyprus' Aris. Meanwhile, veterans like Grzegorz Krychowiak and Kamil Glik have concluded their national team careers. Goalkeeper Wojciech Szczęsny has announced that the Euros will be his last tournament representing the White and Red.