The inaugural edition of the UEFA Nations League gets underway on Thursday, with World Cup winners

This new tournament pitches all 55 European national teams into four divisions and into different groups of four or three teams.

Intriguingly, there will be promotion and relegation of the various national teams depending on their performances at the end of the tournament.

Also, the UEFA Nations League offers an alternative route to the 2020 European Championship, without replacing the qualifiers themselves.

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This will also help solve the problem of “smaller” nations who find it difficult to arrange friendly games during the international break.

So how will the groupings be?

All 55 European nations will be split into four groups, using their own coefficients on the FIFA rankings.

The top 12 European teams will be paired in League A, the next 12 in League B, followed by 15 in League C and the bottom 16 in League D.

All teams paired in a group will then play each other in home and away ties to determine who tops the group.

The winners of the four groups in League A will go through to the finals from Jun 5-9 next year.

Meanwhile, there will also be semi-finals, a third-place play-off and a final which will all be played in the host country – mind you the host nation will be selected from one of the teams that qualify to the final.

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And while the eventual winner gets to take home a trophy, there will also be relegation and promotion of teams.

The teams that finish bottom of each group in Leagues A, B and C will be relegated and replaced by those finishing top of the groups in Leagues B, C and D.

Also, four slots to the 2020 European Championship would be decided from the play-offs of the UEFA Nations League.

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Below is the draw for the maiden UEFA Nations League:

League A

Group 1: Germany, France, Netherlands

Group 2: Belgium, Iceland, Switzerland

Group 3: Italy, Poland, Portugal

Group 4: Croatia, England, Spain

League B

Group 1: Czech Republic, Slovakia, Ukraine

Group 2: Russia, Sweden, Turkey

Group 3: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Northern Ireland

Group 4: Denmark, Republic of Ireland, Wales

League C

Group 1: Albania, Israel, Scotland

Group 2: Estonia, Finland, Greece, Hungary

Group 3: Bulgaria, Cyprus, Norway, Slovenia

Group 4: Lithuania, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia

League D

Group 1: Andorra, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Latvia

Group 2: Belarus, Luxembourg, Moldova, San Marino

Group 3: Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands, Kosovo, Malta

Group 4: Armenia, Macedonia, Gibraltar, Liechtenstein