UEFA's inaugural Nations League competition is approaching the end of its preliminary phase.
The race to earn promotion to the league above or even qualify for the finals – all while avoiding the drop to the tier below – is beginning to hot up ahead of next month's last batch of group games.
With potential places at Euro 2020 up for grabs, not to mention seedings for the draw for the qualifying phase, it is within some teams' interests to take their next couple of matches pretty seriously.
Here, we look at the state of play ahead of the last games of matchday five and the matchday six fixtures in November.
LEAGUE A – RACE TO THE FINALS
Group 1: France, Netherlands, Germany
Standings: France are top with four points from two games, one above Netherlands and three clear of Germany. If Germany lose to France on Tuesday, they cannot finish higher than second.
Remaining matches: France v Germany (16/10), Netherlands v France (16/11), Germany v Netherlands (19/11)
Group 2: Belgium, Switzerland, Iceland
Standings: Belgium and Switzerland have six points; Roberto Martinez's side, who have a game in hand, are top thanks to their head-to-head record. Switzerland must beat them by two goals next month to qualify for the finals. Iceland, with no points, have been relegated.
Remaining matches: Belgium v Iceland (15/11), Switzerland v Belgium (18/11)
Group 3: Portugal, Italy, Poland
Standings: Portugal are top with six points from two games, two ahead of Italy. They will reach the finals with a draw against Italy in their last match; the Azzurri must win and hope Portugal then fail to beat Poland to have any chance. Poland have been relegated.
Remaining matches: Italy v Portugal (17/11), Portugal v Poland (20/11)
Group 4: Spain, England, Croatia
Standings: Spain are two points above England at the top. They will reach the finals if they beat Croatia. If they do not, England can qualify with a win over Croatia, who need two victories to finish top themselves.
Remaining matches: Croatia v Spain (15/11), England v Croatia (18/11)
RACE FOR PROMOTION
League B: Ukraine need a draw to go up, as do Russia, although they will be promoted regardless if Sweden do not beat Turkey next month. Bosnia-Herzegovina are also one point away from top spot. Austria, Czech Republic, Denmark, Republic of Ireland, Slovakia, Sweden and Wales can also still be promoted.
League C: Israel and Finland are a point away from promotion. Bulgaria will go up if they beat Norway on Tuesday and Cyprus do not beat Slovenia. Serbia will top their group next month if they beat Montenegro and Romania lose to Lithuania. Scotland, Albania, Greece, Norway, Cyprus and Montenegro can also still be promoted.
League D: Georgia will go up with a win on Tuesday or if both Group 1 games finish in draws. Luxembourg will be promoted if they beat Belarus, as will Kosovo if they defeat Malta and Azerbaijan fail to beat Faroe Islands. Macedonia will be up with a win over Armenia and if Liechtenstein and Gibraltar draw. Andorra, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Belarus, Moldova, Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands, Liechtenstein, Armenia and Gibraltar can also still be promoted.
7 - After going seven games without defeat between March and October 2017 (W4 D3), Scotland have since lost seven of their last nine games in all competitions (W2). Regression. pic.twitter.com/jFlp5PrbJ9— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) October 14, 2018
BATTLE AGAINST RELEGATION
League A: Iceland and Poland are relegated. Germany will be down if they do not win another game, as will Croatia. France, Netherlands and England can also go down.
League B: Sweden will be down if they lose to Turkey or fail to win next month. Northern Ireland will be relegated if Austria take at least a point against Bosnia-Herzegovina. Ukraine, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Turkey, Austria, Denmark, Wales and Republic of Ireland can also go down.
League C: Estonia will be relegated with defeat to Hungary. Slovenia will be down if they lose to Cyprus and Norway avoid defeat to Bulgaria. Lithuania need six points and to hope Montenegro beat Romania. Israel, Scotland, Albania, Greece, Hungary, Norway, Cyprus and Romania can also go down.
WHY DOES IT MATTER?
The four group winners in League A will go into the Nations League Finals draw on December 3. They are also guaranteed at least a play-off place for Euro 2020, if they fail to get through qualifying.
The promoted teams from Leagues B, C and D will move up a League for the next Nations League tournament. They are also guaranteed at least a play-off place for Euro 2020, if they fail to get through qualifying.
The relegated teams from Leagues A, B and C will move down a League for the next Nations League tournament.
Every team's final position will determine their seeding for Euro 2020 qualifying, the draw for which takes place on December 2.
|England trio Nowell, Slade and Cowan-Dickie sign fresh Exeter deals|
|Windies coach Pybus not distracted by detractors|
|Barcelona 3 Leganes 1: Messi and Suarez combine to spare Barca´s blushes|
|I´m sure Michael would be extremely proud - Vettel hails Mick Schumacher|
|Young plays down injury fears for England trio Launchbury, Shields and Hughes|
|Pochettino: Lucas Moura fit for Chelsea clash|
|Ranieri positive on Fulham survival chances despite ´unbelievable´ Spurs loss|
|United Arab Emirates v Kyrgyzstan: Zaccheroni confident in attack|
|South Korea lose Ki to hamstring injury|
|It doesn´t look great - Pochettino to wait on Alli assessment|
|Messi benched as Barcelona face Leganes|
|Dalglish texts me before matches - Van Dijk|
|Patrick Mahomes could sign NFL´s first $200m contract - reports|
|Iran 2 Oman 0: Jahanbakhsh and Dejagah secure last-eight spot|
|Helloooo u remember me? Nkoudou reminds Spurs fans he exists|
|Japan v Saudi Arabia: Pizzi believes Saudis can upset the odds|
|Repsol Honda´s Lorenzo to have surgery on fractured wrist|
|Fulham 1 Tottenham 2: Winks heads late winner after Alli injury|
|Leinster seal home quarter-final with win over Wasps|
|Vince, Curran star as Sixers trounce Heat to move second|
|Sharapova stunned by Barty as Kvitova takes Anisimova to school|
|Guardiola demands improvement after Man City win|
|Sexton has bat phone to referees - Jones|
|Alonso accepts Chelsea guilty of ´silly mistakes´ in Arsenal defeat|
|Guardiola woke us up - Sane reveals half-time rocket for Man City|
|A first step to something bigger - Tsitsipas eyeing glory after shocking Federer|
|Thailand 1 China 2: Gao Lin keeps dream alive for Lippi|
|Tsitsipas in dreamland after ousting Federer, birthday boy Tiafoe breaks new ground|
|Huddersfield Town 0 Manchester City 3: Danilo, Sterling and Sane on target for ton-up City|
|Allegri: Khedira will be like a new signing for Juventus|
|Manchester City reach 100 goals in 2018-19|
|Australia v Uzbekistan: Leckie´s return is ´like a new signing´, says Arnold|
|Jordan 1 Vietnam 1 (aet, 2-4 on penalties): Keeper Van Lam the shoot-out hero|
|Federer confirms French Open return after Melbourne exit|
|I accept his decision - Gattuso axes Chelsea-bound Higuain|
|The rapid rise of Federer-conqueror Tsitsipas|
|Gracious Federer hails ´better player´ Tsitsipas after Australian Open exit|
|Tsitsipas ´happiest man on earth´ after stunning Federer|
|Harden focused on wins, not personal feats after scoring 48 points|
|PSG midfielder Verratti suffers sprained ankle|
|Inspired Tsitsipas dethrones Federer|
|PSG´s Cavani considering career finale in Uruguay|
|Feisty Collins ready to make more noise after thrashing Kerber|
|I´ve got to work on my soccer skills! - Mavs´ Doncic didn´t know ejection rule|
|Lakers won´t rush LeBron & Rondo back despite Ball injury|
|A-League Review: Victory fightback in thriller with Wellington|
|Henry explains foul-mouthed confrontation with Strasbourg´s Lala|
|Nadal wary of ´dangerous´ Tiafoe|
|Emery ´not positive´ over Bellerin injury|
|Harden scores 48 points as Rockets rally past Lakers in OT|
|Pacquiao wants Mayweather rematch after beating Broner|
|Sharapova unimpressed with questions after Melbourne exit|
|Nadal outclasses Berdych en route to quarters|
|Collins trounces 2016 Aus Open champion Kerber|
|Sanchez: Man United thriving thanks to Solskjaer|
|Sharapova crashes out of Australian Open|
|Devils´ Palmieri replaces Hall on NHL All-Star roster|
|Tuchel stunned by PSG´s nine-goal thrashing of Guingamp|
|Modric wants to extend Real Madrid stay|
|Marotta: Icardi will re-sign, Godin wants Inter|
|´F*** no!´ - Westbrook on if he´s cool with Embiid|
|Mickelson shoots 66 to stay ahead at Desert Classic|
|Real Madrid? You never know what the future holds - PSG´s Mbappe|
|Inter lacked quality in disappointing Sassuolo draw - Spalletti|
|Walton has one goal for Lakers-Rockets matchup: Keep Harden under 50 points|
|CAF Champions League Review: Simba learn Vita lesson as Sundowns find form|
|Bayliss relishing pressure of World Cup and Ashes to finish England reign|
|Guardiola keen to keep City rhythm and challenge on four fronts|
|Fifita backs Johnson to inspire the Sharks|
|For Real Madrid, nothing is impossible - Solari refuses to give up in title race|