Iceland have made history by qualifying for there first major football tournament. On Sunday night they took on Kazakhstan in their latest European Qualifier and a nil-nil draw saw them take the point that they required to qualify for the finals in France during the summer of 2016.
Qualification for the European Championships is more than impressive with the island nation becoming the smallest nation to qualify for a Euros, with an estimated population of just 317,000.
Sitting top of group A they have fought off challenges from the far more experienced nations of Turkey and World Cup 3rd place finishers the Netherlands. The later have been beaten twice by this tiny nation during the qualification process.
Iceland rise to footballs top tier of world football was first noted during the 2014 World Cup qualification where they beat the likes of Slovenia and Norway to second in their group. Only a 2-0 aggregate defeat to Croatia prevented them from qualifying for Brazil. The continued development of this team has now seen them grow further and with the team now sitting in 23rd position in the World Rankings, above the likes of France, Ukraine and Russia they will surely be a team to keep an eye on as the build up to the European Championships continue.
In 2016 the PDC have announced that the European Tour is set to grow to 10 events.
With the continued growth of the PDC this move will surely bring smiles to the European darting world. With a large focus around Germany we will look and hope for a German to realise this darting countries potential and start to challenge for titles on the PDC circuit. Youngster Max Hopp continues to show the promise required but as of yet has failed to live up to the talent he has shown. Failing to even win on the PDCs Youth or Development tours. Maybe 2016 will be Max’s opportunity to shine.
With the European Tor supplemented with the World Cup opportunities for the European Darter has never been so great. See below for the events that are set to take place in 2016:
|12.02.-14.02.||Dutch Darts Masters||Venray||NL|
|26.03.-28.03.||German Darts Masters||München||D|
|06.05.-08.05.||Gibraltar Darts Trophy||Gibraltar||GIB|
|13.05.-15.05.||International Darts Trophy||Hamburg||D|
|02.06.-05.06.||World Cup of Darts||Frankfurt||D|
|10.06.-12.06.||European Darts Matchplay||To be confirmed||AUT|
|29.07.-31.07.||European Darts Open||Düsseldorf||D|
|02.09.-04.09.||International Darts Open||Riesa||D|
|09.09.-11.09.||European Darts Trophy||Mülheim a.d.R.||D|
|16.09.-18.09.||European Darts Grand Prix||Sindelfingen||D|
|14.10.-16.10.||German Darts Championship||Hildesheim||D|
|28.10.-30.10.||European Darts Championship||To be confirmed||B|