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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 July, 2004, 14:28 GMT 15:28 UK
Man Utd to host England
Manchester United's Old Trafford ground
v Wales, 9 Oct 2004
at Old Trafford
v N Ireland, 26 Mar 2005
at Old Trafford
v Azerbaijan, 30 Mar 2005
at St James' Park
v Austria, 8 Oct 2005
at Old Trafford
v Poland, 12 Oct 2005
at Old Trafford
Old Trafford will host four of England's five home World Cup 2006 qualifying games, including the opening home fixture against Wales.

The 67,000-capacity home of Manchester United also hosts three matches in 2005, Northern Ireland in March, and Austria and Poland in October.

Newcastle's 52,000-capacity St James' Park stages England's first-ever home match against Azerbaijan in March 2005.

The FA insisted friendlies would still take place at other English grounds.

An FA spokesman said: "We are still committed in the final year before we return to the magnificent new Wembley to taking England fixtures around the country.

"However, as this is the World Cup qualifying campaign we wanted to make sure the maximum number of fans had the opportunity to see the England side.

"That is why we have chosen the two biggest club grounds in the country."

  • The European Under-21 Championship qualifier against Wales will be staged at Blackburn Rovers' Ewood Park on 8 October.

    The Under-21s' first match of the season, and the first under coach Peter Taylor, is the fixture against Ukraine at Middlesbrough on 17 August.

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