Scotland face Dutch in 2015 World Cup qualifying play-off semi

Scotland coach Anna Signeul with Joanne Love, Gemma Fay and Megan Sneddon
Anna Signeul with (from left) the vastly-experienced trio of Joanne Love, Gemma Fay and Megan Sneddon

Scotland have been drawn against the Netherlands in the play-off semi-final for the final European qualifying place for next year's Fifa Women's World Cup.

If Anna Signeul's team triumph in their two-legged semi, they will face the winners of Italy's tie against Ukraine over two legs.

Scotland are at home for the first leg against the Dutch on 25 or 26 October.

"We know what to expect having narrowly missed out in the last two Euro play-offs," said Signeul.

"I believe those experiences will benefit us as we strive to reach the finals of a major tournament for the first time."

The Netherlands and Italy were seeded for the draw in Nyon, Switzerland, which meant they could not meet in the last four.

The finals in Canada will feature 24 teams, eight more than previous tournaments.

Signeul told the Scottish FA website: "Fortunately we have also had the opportunity to play against The Netherlands a number of times in recent years, mainly at the Cyprus Women's Cup.

"We have good record against them at that tournament, winning the last three matches, but we know how tough these upcoming play-off matches will be.

"We go in to this play-off at the end of a very positive qualifying campaign where we won eight games and only lost to one of the best teams in the world, Sweden.

"The Netherlands have also had a great campaign, only dropping points in a defeat to Norway and a draw to Belgium.

"They are a fast and technical team and have many full-time professionals in their squad playing outside of The Netherlands.

"They have one of the emerging stars of women's football in their side - Vivianne Miedema - who inspired them to the UEFA Women's Under-19 Championship title summer. She was also joint-top scorer in this qualifying campaign alongside Eniola Aluko of England, Gaetane Thiney of France, and of course, our own Jane Ross."

Regular finalists Germany, England, France, Norway and Sweden won their groups to secure automatic spots, as did Spain and Switzerland, who have qualified for the first time.

Italy, the Netherlands, Scotland and Ukraine finished the group phase as the four best second-placed sides but only one will head to Canada following the final over two legs on 22/23 and 26/27 November.

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