There's a genuine chance Italy, France and Romania could finish in a three-way tie for second in Group C. If Romania lose by three goals to Holland, and Italy and France play to a draw, with all three teams scoring the same number of goals Tuesday, those squads will be completely level: 2 points, a -3 goal differential, and the same number of goals for and against. What happens then? The qualifying coefficient comes into play, with the tiebreaker going to the team with the highest average points earned in qualifying matches from 2006 World Cup and Euro 2008. (The average is used since teams played various numbers of qualifying matches.) That tiebreaker favors Italy.
Italy: 52 points from 22 matches= 2.36
Romania: 54 points from 24 matches= 2.25
France: 46 points from 22 matches= 2.09
Here are the other Group C scenarios:
-Romania advance with a win over Holland, regardless of the result of the Italy-France match.
-If Romania lose or draw against Holland, the winner of Italy-France advances.
-If Italy and France draw, Romania would still advance if they lose to Holland by two goals or less.
-If Italy and France draw and Romania lose by four or more to Holland, Italy and France will go to shootout for second.
-If Italy and France draw and Romania lose by three, Romania advance if they score more goals than Italy and France. (For example, Romania could lose 4-1, but would advance if Italy and France play to a 0-0 draw.)
-If Italy and France draw and Romania lose by three, and score fewer goals than Italy and France, Italy and France will go to a shootout for second. (For example, if Romania lose 3-0 to Holland, a 1-1 draw between Italy and France would send them to shootout.)
Got all that? Incidentally, the qualifying coefficient is what was used to seed teams for this tournament. That's how a team like France, with a relatively low score, end up grouped with Italy.