The Netherlands is doing good business in the UEFA rankings, despite...

Thursday, October 29, 2020 at 23:48

The Netherlands has done relatively good business in this European round of play on the coefficient ranking list of UEFA. Due to the victories of AZ (4-1 against HNK Rijeka) and PSV (1-2 against Omonia Nicosia), ground has been gained over Belgium, which is currently one place higher in eighth place. At the same time, close pursuer Austria has not managed to gain ground on the Netherlands.

Ajax was the first Dutch team to take action on Tuesday-evening and played a 2-2 draw against Atalanta in the Champions League, which yielded 0.2 coefficient points. The victories of PSV and AZ each yield 0.4 coefficient points, bringing the total for this season to 3.8. That is the same season total as Belgium, which has had a lesser round of play. Club Brugge drew 2-2 in the Champions League and therefore also took 0.2 coefficient point, while Antwerp was allowed to add 0.4 coefficient point for Belgium with a surprising victory over Tottenham Hotspur.

AA Gent (with 1-4 against TSG 1899 Hoffenheim) and Standard Liège (with 3-0 against Benfica), however, went down and collected no points for Belgium, which meant that the Netherlands was caught up. Feyenoord’s hefty 1-4 defeat against Wolfsberger AC also seemed to mean bad news in view of the coefficient ranking, as Austria is on the heels of the Netherlands. Wolfsberger AC and LASK Linz (4-3 win over Ludogorets) each took 0.4 coefficient point for Austria, but defeats by Red Bull Salzburg (3-2 defeat against Atlético Madrid) and Rapid Wien (1-0 against Molde) ensure that the Netherlands is not caught up.

Behind Austria, it is still important for the Netherlands to watch out for two countries: Scotland and Ukraine. Scotland has taken over tenth place in the coefficient ranking list from Ukraine thanks to the victory of Rangers (1-0 against Lech Poznan) and the draw of Celtic (2-2 against Lille OSC). That had a disappointing round, with a 0-0 draw by Shakhtar Donetsk against Internazionale, a 2-2 draw by Dynamo Kiev against Ferencvaros and a 1-2 defeat by Zorya Luhansk against SC Braga.

The meager results of the Ukrainian clubs are good news for the Netherlands. In a year’s time, the 2016/17 season (in which Ajax made it to the final of the Europa League) will be dropped from the coefficient ranking, so Football International virtually occupies eleventh place on next season’s list. On this list, however, the Netherlands can quickly conquer a place in the top ten, because the gap with Ukraine is only 0.5 points. A place in the top 10 is sacred, because that gives the champion one hundred percent immediate access to the group stage of the Champions League. This does not seem to be a problem for the 2021/22 season, because the Netherlands currently holds a place in the top ten of the coefficient ranking list.

The state of affairs around the tenth place of the coefficient ranking:
6. Portugal 42.949 (+1.2) (3/5)
7. Russia 37,215 (+0.2) (4/6)
8. Belgium 34,300 (+0.6) (4/5)
9. Netherlands 33,800 (+1.0) (4/5)
10. Austria 32,625 (+0.8) (4/5)
11. Scotland 30,125 (+0.6) (2/4)
12. Ukraine 29,900 (+0.4) (3/5)
13. Turkey 28,900 (+0) (2/5)

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