Argentina, Brazil And Other South America Nations Set To Join Expanded UEFA Nations League From 2024

The UEFA Nations League is set to expand to include all 10 South American nations from the 2024 edition.

UEFA and CONMEBOL, the South American confederation, signed a renewed and extended Memorandum of Understanding on Wednesday to commit to the "opening of a shared UEFA/CONMEBOL office in London and the potential organisation of a variety of football events."

According to reports, the Memorandum of Understanding signed by both organisations and valid until 2028 is expected to be a global tournament.

All games would be played in Europe, without sending any European national team to South America.

The idea of this tournament has been in talks for some time since the first "Finalissima" game between Italy (European Champions),  and Argentina (Copa América Champions) was confirmed to take place on June 1, 2022 at a stadium in London.

UEFA vice-president Zbigniew Boniek speaking in an interview with Polish outlet Meczyki said;

"This is the last UEFA Nations League in this format.

"We had a meeting with CONMEBOL, the confederation for South American countries. From 2024, teams from that continent will join the competition," The former Polish FA chairman Boniek added.

"In what format will it be? We're still working on it. The schedule of matches for the national teams is restricted so you can't mix it up too much."

CloudNine Sports understands since the introduction of the UEFA Nations League in 2019 which replaced the normal international friendlies, South America countries have been unable to play top European countries.

The top-ranked six CONMEBOL nations according to World Cup qualifying tables will now join the League A of the Nations League, which would be Brazil, Argentina, and most likely Colombia, Uruguay, Peru and Chile.

This would set up blockbuster matches against the likes of Spain, Germany, England and France.

The other four, Paraguay, Ecuador, Venezuela and Bolivia would join the League B.

That would now see 22 nations in League A and 20 in League B, while both currently hold 16 teams to create four groups of four nations. 

Leagues C and D would continue as they currently are.

Boniek also indicated that the format and schedule are still being worked on given the restraints in place by FIFA regarding available dates.

France are the latest edition champions of the UEFA Nations League having defeated Spain 2-1 in the final back in October. Portugal won the inaugural edition in 2019.

The draw for the league phase of the third edition of the UEFA Nations League took place in Nyon on Thursday, 16 December 2021.

Below is the Draw result as follows;

League A:

Group 1: France, Denmark, Croatia, Austria

Group 2: Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Czech Republic

Group 3: Italy, Germany, England, Hungary

Group 4: Belgium, Netherlands, Poland, Wales

League B:

Group 1: Ukraine, Scotland, Republic of Ireland, Armenia

Group 2: Iceland, Russia, Israel, Albania

Group 3: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Finland, Romania, Montenegro

Group 4: Sweden, Norway, Serbia, Slovenia

League C:

Group 1: Turkey, Luxembourg, Lithuania, Faroe Islands

Group 2: Northern Ireland, Greece, Kosovo, Cyprus/Estonia

Group 3: Slovakia, Belarus, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan/Moldova

Group 4: Bulgaria, North Macedonia, Georgia, Gibraltar

League D:

Group 1: Liechtenstein, Kazakhstan/Moldova, Andorra, Latvia

Group 2: Malta, Cyprus/Estonia, San Marino

Leagues A, B and C all have 16 teams, which were each drawn into four groups of four for the league phase. The remaining seven teams, in League D, were split into two groups, one of four and the other of three.

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