first_imgNEW IRELAND BOSS Martin O’Neill will hold an end-of-year press conference in Dublin tomorrow afternoon.And as he prepares for a European Championships campaign in 2014, the Derry native will be boosted by news from UEFA today.European football’s governing body today confirmed the qualification format for Euro 2016 in France. And it’s easier than ever for the Boys in Green to make it to a major tournament it seems.“The nine group winners, the nine group runners-up and the best third-placed side will qualify directly for the final tournament,” UEFA state. “The eight remaining third-placed teams will contest play-offs to determine the last four qualifiers for the finals.”France qualify automatically as hosts.As well as changes to the qualification format, Michel Platini has masterminded a new ‘week of football’ in which qualifiers are spread across a week.UEFA say games will be scheduled from Thursday to Tuesday.A statement reads: “Kick-off times will be set mainly at 5pm and 7.45pm on Saturdays and Sundays and 7.45pm for Thursdays, Fridays, Mondays and Tuesdays. On double-header matchweeks, teams will play on Thursday/Sunday, Friday/Monday or Saturday/Tuesday.”The draw for the qualifiers will take place in Nyon on 23 February.What do you think?Hailstorm holds up Stoke-Man United cup tieScratch that: It’s just the 17 red cards now for Sergio Ramoslast_img