2019 UEFA Nations League Draw: Full Semi-Final Matchups Revealed

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistDecember 3, 2018

The UEFA Nations League trophy is pictured prior to the UEFA Nations League group 3 football match Italy vs Portugal at the San Siro Stadium in Milan on November 17, 2018. (Photo by Marco BERTORELLO / AFP)        (Photo credit should read MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP/Getty Images)

The semi-finals of the 2019 UEFA Nations League will see hosts Portugal take on Switzerland, while England will play the Netherlands in the other clash. 

Each of the four countries qualified from their respective groups recently and were in the draw in Dublin on Monday, per Rob Harris of the Associated Press:

Rob Harris @RobHarris

Nations League semifinals https://t.co/hZl7vqHzdC

The finals of the competition will take place between June 5 and June 9.

A total of 55 teams were involved from the start of the inaugural edition of the Nations League, which implemented a promotion and relegation format.

The match involving the hosts will be played at the Estadio do Dragao in Porto, while the other will be in Guimaraes at the Estadio D Afonso Henriques.

Despite some initial confusion from supporters regarding the setup, eventually the competition was deemed a success, with the Netherlands, England and Switzerland all qualifying as a result of thrilling performances in their final matches.

For the Three Lions, a 2-1 win over Croatia at Wembley was enough to see them through, with Harry Kane's dramatic late goal catapulting England from the relegation spot up into top spot ahead of their opponents and Spain.

While the Nations League has had its doubters, Kane made it clear just how much the winner meant to him: 

Harry Kane @HKane

To hear that atmosphere at Wembley today was superb. What a year it has been in an @England shirt and even more exciting times ahead. Proud of the squad. Proud of our fans. #ThreeLions 🦁🦁🦁 https://t.co/lunFRVclfl

The same goes for Netherlands skipper Virgil van Dijk, as his brilliant volley late on against Germany earned his side a 2-2 draw and a spot in the semi-finals ahead of France:

Virgil van Dijk @VirgilvDijk

What a night!! What a team!! We must now keep working hard and keep getting better! Enjoyed the amazing atmosphere in the stadium! it was a night to remember 🔥🦁 @OnsOranje https://t.co/PYhblTWkyG

For the Dutch, the competition has provided a chance to reestablish themselves as a force of European football, having failed to qualify for the last two major tournaments. Wins over Germany and world champions France have shown they will be a challenging opponent for England.

Elsewhere, Switzerland are definitely not a team to be written off, as they produced a stunning comeback win against Belgium to get into the semis.

They trailed by two goals early on and knew they needed to win by a couple to progress. However, they launched a stunning fightback, with Haris Seferovic on the scoresheet three times in a remarkable 5-2 win.

Football journalist Tom Kundert noted that this epic encounter was one of a number of thrilling fixtures at the end of the group stages:

Tom Kundert @PortuGoal1

Last few days surely won round the doubters. Witness the passion on the pitch and in the stands in Croatia 3-2 Spain, England 2-1 Croatia, Switzerland 5-2 Belgium, the way Italy tore into the Seleção, Portugal's celebrations at the San Siro. Great competition this #NationsLeague! https://t.co/6w0FMbqgqo

Portugal's route to the finals wasn't quite so spectacular, as they booked their spot at the summer showpiece with a 0-0 draw in Italy.

For the European champions it will be a chance to impress in front of their own supporters. For star man and captain Cristiano Ronaldo, these games represent another big stage upon which he will seek to thrive.


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