What do Scotland need to do to qualify for World Cup finals? When are the next fixtures? All you need to know after win over Austria
Steve Clarke’s side have given themselves a great opportunity to book a spot in Qatar after their 1-0 win over Austria in Vienna last night, but there’s still a long way to go.
Here’s everything you need to know about what the Scots need in order to make it to the World Cup.
Can Scotland automatically qualify for the World Cup finals?
Technically yes but it doesn’t look likely.
Only the ten group winners in the European qualifying sections will automatically book a place in the finals and Denmark have a commanding lead at the top of Scotland’s group.
The Danes have won six from six so far and have a seven point lead over the Scots in second, so while it is mathematically possible to overtake them it would mean the group leaders throwing away a massive advantage in the coming games.
What happens if Scotland finish as group runners up in qualifying?
They would advance to the play-offs.
The ten group runners up along with the two best Nations League group winners take part in the play-offs.
Only three teams will make it out of the play-offs, which are divided up as six semi-finals and three finals.
The best placed runners up (finishing second with the most points and best goal difference if necessary) will be seeded and will play their single leg semi final at home so it’s important to finish as strong as possible.
What are Scotland’s remaining World Cup qualifying fixtures?
Scotland have four fixtures remaining in qualifying starting with the visit of Israel to Hampden on October 9.
That is followed by Faroe Islands away three days later on October 12 then their final two fixtures are Moldova (A) on November 12 and Denmark (H) on November 15.
Winning their next three matches would guarantee a minimum second place group finish for the Scots.
Who could Scotland face in the play-offs? (If they make it!)
It’s far too early to say.
They would face one of the other nine runners-up or the two best Nations League group winners but there’s a long way to go before any specific opponents could be identified.