Malta Drawn Alongside Azerbaijan For First Edition Of 'Absurd And Abstract' Nations League

Meanwhile, England will be facing Spain

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Malta's name has been drawn in the same group as Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands and Kosovo in the UEFA Nations League, a new European competition set to debut later this year. 

The international competition will pit Europe's 55 nations against each other based on their ranking. These rankings have divided the nations into four separate mini-leagues, with four groups each. 

In the top tier League A, England's group features Spain and Croatia. Italy, on the other hand, will be facing Poland and Portugal. Malta is in League D's Group Three.

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The UEFA Nations League, which also features promotion and relegation, will be replacing the majority of international friendlies. It is designed to allow some teams that don't quality for Euro 2020 a path to the play-offs beyond the normal route.

The new competition, however, has not been without its controversies. People have dubbed the league "abstract and absurd", going on to say that it is "not so much a sporting competition as a wacky adventure, an attempt to wheeze some life into a moribund product."

Malta is currently ranked 47th out of the 55 European nations. Fellow Group 3 members Kosovo and Faroe Islands rank 55th and 51st respectively. Azerbaijan, on the other hand, might hold the biggest threat in the group, and are currently at a much better 23rd on the list.

The first tournament is due to commence in September 2018, after the 2018 FIFA World Cup. The winner will be decided in June 2019.

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Here are the full results of today's draw:

LEAGUE A

Group One: Germany, France, Netherlands

Group Two: Belgium, Switzerland, Iceland

Group Three: Portugal, Italy, Poland

Group Four: Spain, England, Croatia

LEAGUE B

Group One: Slovakia, Czech Republic, Ukraine

Group Two: Russia, Sweden, Turkey

Group Three: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Northern Ireland

Group Four: Wales, Ireland, Denmark

LEAGUE C

Group One: Scotland, Albania, Israel

Group Two: Hungary, Greece, Finland, Estonia

Group Three: Slovenia, Norway, Bulgaria, Cyprus

Group Four: Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania

LEAGUE D

Group One: Georgia, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Andorra

Group Two: Belarus, Luxembourg, Moldova, San Marino

Group Three: Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands, Malta, Kosovo

Group Four: Macedonia, Armenia, Liechtenstein, Gibraltar

What do you think of Malta's chances in the UEFA Nations League? Let us know in the comments below!

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Written By

David Grech Urpani

Sarcastically ironic, Dave is a recovering hipster musician with a penchant for chicken, women's clothes and Kanye.

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