Serbia Euro Cup A journey through successes and tests to Euro 2024

Posted by World Wide Tickets And Hospitality on November 21st, 2023

The history of Serbian football in the Euro Cup is a charming tale that finds its roots in the legacy of Yugoslav football. The journey began in the mid-20th century when Yugoslavia arose as a dynamo on the European stage. The Yugoslav national team, of which Serbia was an integral part, showcased its footballing prowess in the inaugural Euro contest in 1960 and reached the pinnacle in 1968, securing a spot in the final against Italy.

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Despite a heart-wrenching downfall in 1968, Yugoslavia continued to be a tough force in subsequent editions of the European Championship. The team reached the Euro Cup Semi-Finals in 1976, reliably making their mark and leaving an indelible impression on the continent's footballing landscape. As the political landscape shifted in the 1990s, the breakup of Yugoslavia led to the rise of independent footballing nations, including Serbia.

A promising debut at Euro Cup 2008

In 2008, Serbia made its debut as an independent nation in the European Championship. The tournament held in Austria and Switzerland marked the beginning of a new chapter in the nation's footballing history. The Serbian team, led by coach Slavoljub Muslin and featuring emerging talents such as Aleksandar Kolarov and Branislav Ivanovic, showcased a gifted blend of skill and purpose.

The group stage saw Serbia face challenges, but a notable victory against Germany fuelled hopes of a deep run. However, Portugal stood in their way in the quarterfinals. In a closely contested match, Serbia bowed out with a 3-2 defeat, but not before leaving a lasting impression. The competition served as a foundation for future campaigns, hinting at the potential for Serbia to become a force in European football.

Euro Cup 2012, 2016 and 2020 campaigns and challenges

The subsequent Euro campaigns presented challenges for Serbia Euro Cup, with the team struggling to replicate the success of their debut. In the Euro 2012 qualifying campaign, Serbia faced tough competition in a group that included Italy and Estonia. Despite notable performances, the team fell short of qualification, finishing third in the group. The Euro 2016 qualifying campaign brought renewed hope as Serbia aimed for a return to the European stage.

However, inconsistency plagued the team's performances, leading to a fourth-place finish in a competitive group that included Portugal Euro Cup side and Denmark team. The disappointment of missing out on consecutive Euros fuelled a determination to regroup and improve. The Euro 2020 tournament marked a turning point in Serbia Euro Cup journey. Under the management of coach Tumbakovic, the team showed a blend of experience and youth.

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In the Round of 16, Serbia faced a formidable Croatian side. In a pulsating encounter, Serbia national football team emerged victorious with a 2-0 win, securing a spot in the quarterfinals. The team's journey came to an end with a narrow 1-0 defeat against the Netherlands, but the Euro Cup Final 2020 campaign showcased Serbia's resilience and ability to compete at the highest level.

Serbia seal historic Euro 2024 place after draw with Bulgaria

Serbia have qualified for Euro Cup 2024 their first Euros finals berth as an independent nation after a nervy 2-2 home draw against Bulgaria in their final Group G game on Sunday. Dragan Stojkovic’s side knew a point would be sufficient, even if Montenegro beat already qualified Hungary. Montenegro, the third-placed side in the group, went ahead in Budapest but lost 3-1. Serbia, meanwhile, fell behind in the second half before Babic made certain of qualification with a late leveller.

It had looked straightforward for the hosts when Milos Veljkovic headed home to open the scoring in the 16th minute, but fans in Leskovac began to feel the nerves after Slobodan Rubezic’s first-half strike for Montenegro about 500 miles away. Bulgaria, bottom of the group and seeking their first win, fought back in the second half with Georgi Rusev levelling in the 59th minute with a fine finish. Euro fans can buy  Euro Cup Tickets at exclusively discounted prices.

82nd-minute goal to book Euro Cup Germany Tickets

Kiril Despodov, who had hit the bar in the first half, stunned the home crowd 10 minutes later as he lifted the ball over Vanja Milinkovic-Savic to put the visitors ahead. Thankfully for Serbia Euro Cup team, news quickly came through that Dominik Szoboszlai had scored twice in two minutes to put Hungary in front. Babic then headed home from close range in the 82nd minute to earn a draw and allow the celebrations to start.

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In a past turn of events, Serbia sealed their first-ever spot in the Euro Cup Finals as an independent nation after a nail-biting 2-2 draw against Bulgaria in the concluding Group G match on Sunday. The tension-filled match held important stakes for Dragan Stojkovic's squad, knowing that a single point would be enough for qualification, even if Montenegro won over the already qualified Hungary.

Montenegro did take the lead in Budapest but eventually yielded to a 3-1 defeat. The hosts, led by Stojkovic, first appeared to have a frank path when Milos Veljkovic netted a header in the 16th minute, opening the scoring and setting the stage for what seemed like a celebratory occasion. However, nerves crept in as Slobodan Rubezic's first-half strike for Montenegro, some 500 miles away, injected uncertainty into the air in Leskovac.

Serbia Euro Cup Sides first entry after freedom

Bulgaria, sitting at the bottom of the group and eager for their maiden victory, launched a spirited comeback in the second half. Georgi Rusev levelled the score at 1-1 in the 59th minute with a well-placed finish. Kiril Despodov, who had rattled the crossbar in the initial half, further shocked the home crowd by lifting the ball over Vanja Milinkovic-Savic, putting the visitors ahead in the 69th minute.

Fortunately for Serbia, timely news arrived that Dominik Szoboszlai had scored twice in quick succession, propelling Hungary into the lead. The turn of events set the stage for a dramatic conclusion, and Srdjan Babic emerged as Serbia's hero. In the 82nd minute, Babic headed home from close range, securing the crucial draw that ensured Serbia's qualification and triggered jubilant celebrations.

The match's early instants seemed promising for the hosts when Veljkovic's well-timed header found the back of the net, giving Serbia an early advantage. However, as the first half extended, tension mounted as Rubezic's equalizer for Montenegro injected a sense of volatility into the overall state. Bulgaria, gritty to salvage pride and register their first win, deepened their efforts in the second half.

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Serbia's Euro Cup Germany dreams

Rusev's clinical finish in the 59th minute and Despodov's daring chip over Milinkovic-Savic in the 69th minute momentarily cast a shadow over Serbia's Euro 2024 dreams. Luckily, the football gods smiled upon Serbia as news filtered through about Szoboszlai's heroics for Hungary. The rapid turn of events, with Hungary taking the lead, provided Serbia with a lifeline.

As Serbia prepares to embark on their maiden independent journey to the Euro Cup Finals, the dramatic qualification serves as a poignant chapter in the ongoing saga of Serbian football. The players, the coaching staff, and the passionate fans can now look forward to making their mark and creating lasting memories in the prestigious European Championship tournament.

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