UEFA announced the group stage draw for 2013 Euro Women’s Championship qualifying on Monday from Nylon, Switzerland. Defending champion Germany has been drawn into Group 2 with Spain, while 2009 runner-up England will face off with a suddenly hot Netherlands team in Group 6.
The 12 month qualifying process for the tournament begins in September, with 12 teams advancing to final stage in Sweden in July 2013. Group winners and the best runner up will qualify automatically for the final stage, with the remaining six teams playing in a home-and-away playoff in October 2012. The three winners of those series will join the other eight teams and host Sweden in the tournament. Here are how qualifying groups break down:
Group 1: Italy, Russia, Poland, Greece, Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia*, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Group 2: Germany (holders), Spain, Switzerland, Romania, Turkey, Kazakhstan
Group 3: Norway, Iceland, Belgium, Hungary, Northern Ireland, Bulgaria
Group 4: France, Scotland, Republic of Ireland, Wales, Israel
Group 5: Finland, Ukraine, Belarus, Slovakia, Estonia
Group 6: England, Netherlands, Slovenia, Serbia, Croatia
Group 7: Denmark, Czech Republic, Austria, Portugal, Armenia*
*Qualified from preliminary round
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