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Cyprus

Cyprus
Cyprus celebrate a goal against Iceland during qualifying for the 2014 FIFA World Cup ©Getty Images

Cyprus

Best result: never qualified
Coach: Charalampos Christodoulou
Leading scorers: all-time – Michalis Konstantinou (32); current – Constantinos Charalambides (11)
Most appearances: all-time – Ioannis Okkas (106); current – Constantinos Charalambides (73)
Association formed: 1934
Nickname: Galanolefki (Blue-and-White)
Where they play: GSP Stadium, Nicosia; Antonis Papadopoulos Stadium, Larnaca

Cyprus have been attempting to qualify for a major tournament for over half a century but have never come close, registering just a dozen wins apiece in the FIFA World Cup (in 104 attempts) and the UEFA European Championship (94). The island has nonetheless witnessed some famous upsets, including a 3-2 win against Spain on the road to UEFA EURO 2000 and a 5-2 victory against the Republic of Ireland in UEFA EURO 2008 qualification. Fortunes have dwindled of late, however – in contrast to the improved efforts of the country's top clubs in Europe, with APOEL FC notably having reached the 2011/12 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

EURO pedigree
Matches played
Overall: P95 W12 D14 L69 F67 A259
Final tournament: P0 W0 D0 L0 F0 A0
Qualifying: P95 W12 D14 L69 F67 A259

Cyprus have produced several notable results, with 1-1 draws at home against World Cup holders Italy (1983) and European champions Denmark (1995). Yet the real breakthrough was their UEFA EURO 2000 campaign, when home wins against Spain and Israel meant Stavros Papadopoulos' side travelled to Austria for their final match knowing a win would probably ensure second place. Down to nine men before half-time, Cyprus lost 3-1 and their haul of 12 points was one short of a play-off slot. They broke that record tally in UEFA EURO 2008 qualifying (14), winning 5-2 against the Republic of Ireland and 3-1 against Wales. They also drew 1-1 against Germany.

Cyprus kicked off UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying with a remarkable 4-4 draw against Portugal in Guimaraes, but in their remaining seven games scored just three more goals and picked up only one more point, with a 0-0 draw against Iceland. Greek coach Nikos Nioplias replaced compatriot Angelos Anastasiadis midway through the campaign, but could not stop his new side finishing bottom and stepped down.

Memorable EURO matches
07/10/2006: Cyprus 5-2 Republic of Ireland, UEFA EURO 2008 qualifying

Charalambides (2), Konstantinou (2) and Alexandros Garpozis scored in a rousing success.

05/09/1998: Cyprus 3-2 Spain, UEFA EURO 2000 qualifying
Panayiotis Engomitis, Siniša Gogić and Milenko Špoljarić scored in a win that ended Javier Clemente's reign as Spain coach.

12/02/1983: Cyprus 1-1 Italy, 1984 UEFA European Championship qualifying
Christos Omirou's low shot had the world champions creaking until Francesco Graziani rescued a point.

Did you know?
Cyprus hosted their home games on a gravel pitch at the old GSP Stadium in Nicosia until 1974.

*Last updated on 07/01/14

Last updated: 28/01/14 15.20CET

http://www.uefa.com/teamsandplayers/teams/teama/team=33/profile/index.html#cyprus

Club record in UEFA competitions

  • Biggest win:
    10/02/1999, Cyprus 4-0 San Marino, Limassol
  • Biggest defeat:
    08/09/1999, Spain 8-0 Cyprus, Badajoz
  • Appearances in UEFA European Football Championship: 13
  • Player with most appearances: 31
    Ioannis Okkas (CYP)
  • Top scorers: 10
    Ioannis Okkas (CYP)
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