Last updated 03/06/2019 12:24CET
UEFA Nations League: Belgium - Switzerland Match press kits

UEFA Nations League - 2018/19 SeasonMatch press kits

BelgiumBelgiumKing Baudouin Stadium - BrusselsFriday 12 October 2018
20.45CET (20.45 local time)
Group A2 - Matchday 3
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Previous meetings Only this chapter

Head to Head

FIFA World Cup
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
11/10/1989QR (GS)Switzerland - Belgium2-2BaselKnup 50, Türkyilmaz 59; Degryse 57, Geiger 71 (og)
19/10/1988QR (GS)Belgium - Switzerland1-0
BrusselsVervoort 29
1984 UEFA European Championship
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
09/11/1983PR (GS)Switzerland - Belgium3-1
BerneSchällibaum 23, Brigger 75, Geiger 89; Vandenbergh 63
06/10/1982PR (GS)Belgium - Switzerland3-0
BrusselsLüdi 2 (og), Coeck 48, Vandenbergh 82
FIFA World Cup
DateStage reachedMatchResultVenueGoalscorers
20/05/1961QR (GS)Switzerland - Belgium2-1
LausanneBallaman 8, 16; Claessen 83
20/11/1960QR (GS)Belgium - Switzerland2-4
BrusselsVan Himst 24, Paeschen 80; Antenen 21, 48, 78, Schneiter 44
 QualifyingFinal tournamentTotal

Last updated 11/10/2018 15:08CET

Squad list Only this chapter

Belgium - Squad list
League phase
1Thibaut Courtois11/05/199226Real Madrid - 10
12Simon Mignolet06/03/198830Liverpool - 00
13Koen Casteels25/06/199226Wolfsburg - 00
2Toby Alderweireld02/03/198929Tottenham - 10
3Thomas Vermaelen14/11/198532Barcelona - 00
4Vincent Kompany10/04/198632Man. City - 10
5Jason Denayer28/06/199523Lyon - 00
15Thomas Meunier12/09/199127Paris - 10
18Christian Kabasele24/02/199127Watford - 00
20Dedryck Boyata28/11/199027Celtic - 00
21Timothy Castagne05/12/199522Atalanta - 00
6Axel Witsel12/01/198929Dortmund - 10
7Hans Vanaken24/08/199226Club Brugge - 00
8Marouane Fellaini22/11/198730Man. United - 00
10Eden Hazard07/01/199127Chelsea - 11
16Thorgan Hazard29/03/199325Mönchengladbach - 10
17Youri Tielemans07/05/199721Monaco - 10
19Dennis Praet14/05/199424Sampdoria - 00
22Nacer Chadli02/08/198929Monaco - 10
9Romelu Lukaku13/05/199325Man. United - 12
11Yannick Carrasco04/09/199325Dalian Yifang - 10
14Dries Mertens06/05/198731Napoli - 10
23Michy Batshuayi02/10/199325Valencia - 00
-Roberto Martínez13/07/197345 - 10
Switzerland - Squad list
League phase
1Yann Sommer17/12/198829Mönchengladbach - 10
12Yvon Mvogo06/06/199424Leipzig - 00
21David von Ballmoos30/12/199423Young Boys - 00
2Florent Hadergjonaj31/07/199424Huddersfield - 00
3François Moubandje21/06/199028Toulouse - 00
4Nico Elvedi30/09/199622Mönchengladbach - 00
5Manuel Akanji19/07/199523Dortmund - 10
6Michael Lang08/02/199127Mönchengladbach - 00
13Ricardo Rodríguez25/08/199226Milan - 10
20Timm Klose09/05/198830Norwich - 00
22Fabian Schär20/12/199126Newcastle*10
7Renato Steffen03/11/199126Wolfsburg - 00
8Remo Freuler15/04/199226Atalanta - 00
10Granit Xhaka27/09/199226Arsenal*10
11Edimilson Fernandes15/04/199622Fiorentina - 00
14Steven Zuber17/08/199127Hoffenheim - 11
15Christian Fassnacht11/11/199324Young Boys - 00
17Denis Zakaria20/11/199621Mönchengladbach - 11
18Djibril Sow06/02/199721Young Boys - 10
23Xherdan Shaqiri10/10/199127Liverpool - 11
9Haris Seferović22/02/199226Benfica - 11
16Albian Ajeti26/02/199721Basel - 11
19Mario Gavranović24/11/198928Dinamo Zagreb - 00
-Vladimir Petković15/08/196355 - 10

Last updated 12/10/2018 11:24CET

Head coach Only this chapter

Roberto Martínez

Date of birth: 13 July 1973
Nationality: Spanish
Playing career: Real Zaragoza, Balaguer, Wigan, Motherwell, Walsall, Swansea, Chester City
Coaching career: Swansea, Wigan, Everton, Belgium

• Born in Catalonia, Martínez started out at youth level with home-town club Balaguer before joining Zaragoza aged 16. The bulk of his three years there were spent in the youth and B teams, with a solitary appearance for the senior side before he returned to Balaguer in 1994, also running the club's football school.

• Moved to England and Wigan in 1995, forming the 'Three Amigos' with fellow Spaniards Jesús Seba and Isidro Díaz; over the next six years, helped the club win the third division title in 1997 and the Football League trophy two years later. A year with both Motherwell and Walsall preceded a lengthier spell at Swansea between 2003 and 2006, Martínez helping the club to promotion to the third tier. After a season with Chester, he returned to south Wales in 2007, initially as player-manager before quickly hanging up his boots.

• Guided Swansea to the League One championship in 2008 before leaving for Premier League Wigan the following year. Inspired an unlikely escape from relegation in 2011/12 and landed the Latics' first major trophy with victory against Manchester City FC in the FA Cup final 12 months later – although three days after that landmark triumph, Wigan were relegated.

• Martínez remained a man in demand and was appointed Everton manager in June 2013, steering the club to fifth place with their record Premier League points tally in his first term. Everton reached the 2014/15 UEFA Europa League round of 16 and both domestic cup semi-finals in the next campaign, but indifferent league form meant Martínez was dismissed in May 2016.

• Appointed Belgium coach three months later in the wake of Marc Wilmots' departure and led the side to the semi-finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, Belgium ultimately finishing third in Russia – their highest ever placing.


Vladimir Petković

Date of birth: 15 August 1963
Nationality: Swiss
Playing career: Sarajevo (twice), Rudar Ljubija, Koper, Chur 97 (twice), Sion, Martigny-Sports, Bellinzona (twice), Locarno
Coaching career: Bellinzona (twice), Malcantone Agno, Lugano, Young Boys, Samsunspor, Sion, Lazio, Switzerland

• Started his career in midfield with Sarajevo, losing in the 1983 Yugoslavian Cup final but featuring twice as his team took the 1984/85 league title, the only major honour of his playing days. Moved to Switzerland in 1987, playing for second-tier Chur and then ascending to the top flight with Sion in 1988/89; returned to the second division to represent Martigny, Bellinzona and Locarno.

• Petković hung up his boots in 1999, aged 36, following a season as player-coach at Bellinzona. Then led Malcantone Agno to promotion from the third divison in 2002/03 before becoming the first coach of AC Lugano – successors to FC Lugano.

• Rejoined Bellinzona in October 2005, steering them to the 2007/08 Swiss Cup final, where they lost 4-1 to Basel, but consolation came two weeks later as victory in a relegation/promotion play-off against St Gallen gave Bellinzona a Super League berth.

• Was appointed Young Boys coach in August 2008, guiding them to second-placed finishes in his first two campaigns in charge as well as the 2008/09 Swiss Cup final. After short spells in charge of Turkey's Samsunspor and Sion back in Switzerland, was named Lazio coach in June 2012 and won the Coppa Italia in his first term in Italy, also helping the side to seventh position in the final standings.

• Left in January 2014 after being appointed Switzerland coach Ottmar Hitzfeld's successor, taking the reins after the 2014 FIFA World Cup. Promptly guided his charges to UEFA EURO 2016, where they lost to Poland in the last 16, and to the same stage of the 2018 World Cup, where they were beaten by Sweden.


Match officials Only this chapter

  • RefereeAntonio Mateu Lahoz (ESP)
  • Assistant refereesPau Cebrián Devís (ESP) , Roberto del Palomar (ESP)
  • Additional assistant refereesAlejandro Hernandez (ESP) , José Gonzalez (ESP)
  • Fourth officialDiego Barbero Sevilla (ESP)
  • UEFA DelegateBernd Barutta (GER)
  • UEFA Referee observerKaren Nalbandyan (ARM)


NameDate of birthUEFA matches
Antonio Mateu Lahoz12/03/1977059

UEFA Nations League matches between the two teams

No such matches refereed

Other matches involving teams from either of the two countries involved in this match

DateCompetitionStage reachedHomeAwayResultVenue
23/08/2012UELPOKSC Lokeren OVFC Viktoria Plzeň2-1Brussels
06/08/2013UCL3QRGrasshopper Club ZürichOlympique Lyonnais0-1Zurich
26/08/2015UCLPOClub BruggeManchester United FC0-4Bruges
17/03/2016UELR16RSC AnderlechtFC Shakhtar Donetsk0-1Brussels

Last updated 11/10/2018 15:07CET

Competition facts Only this chapter

What is the background to the UEFA Nations League?

The rejuvenation of national team football – and the UEFA Nations League – stems from the desire of UEFA and its 55 member associations to improve the quality and standing of national team football. UEFA and its associations wanted more sporting meaning in national team football, with associations, coaches, players and supporters increasingly of the opinion that friendly matches are not providing adequate competition for national teams.

Extensive consultation and discussions started as far back as the 2011 UEFA Strategy Meeting in Cyprus and continued at a series of Top Executive Programme (TEP) meetings over the following three years. The UEFA Nations League was unanimously adopted at the XXXVIII Ordinary UEFA Congress in Astana on 27 March 2014.

What is the basic format?

  • The format of the UEFA Nations League features promotion and relegation. The 55 European national teams have been divided into four leagues in accordance with UEFA's national association coefficient rankings on 11 October 2017.
  • League A includes the top-ranked sides and League D includes the lowest:

League A

Group A1: Germany, France, Netherlands
Group A2: Belgium, Switzerland, Iceland
Group A3: Portugal, Italy, Poland
Group A4: Spain, England, Croatia

  • Teams have been split into four groups of three, with the group winners then contesting the UEFA Nations League Finals (semi-finals, third-place match and final) in June 2019 to become the UEFA Nations League winners. One host country will be appointed in December 2018 from among the finalist teams.
  • The four teams that finish bottom of their groups will be relegated to League B for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

League B

Group B1: Slovakia, Ukraine, Czech Republic
Group B2: Russia, Sweden, Turkey
Group B3: Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Northern Ireland
Group B4: Wales, Republic of Ireland, Denmark

  • Teams have been split into four groups of three.
  • The four group winners are promoted to League A, with the four sides that finish bottom relegated to League C for the next competition to be played in 2020.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer

League C

Group C1: Scotland, Albania, Israel
Group C2: Hungary, Greece, Finland, Estonia
Group C3: Slovenia, Norway, Bulgaria, Cyprus
Group C4: Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania

  • Teams have been split into one group of three (containing teams from Pots 1, 2 and 3 only) and three groups of four.
  • Due to winter venue restrictions, a group could contain a maximum of two of these teams: Norway, Finland, Estonia, Lithuania.
  • The four group winners are promoted to League B, with the four sides that finish bottom relegated to League D for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

League D

Group D1: Georgia, Latvia, Kazakhstan, Andorra
Group D2: Belarus, Luxembourg, Moldova, San Marino
Group D3: Azerbaijan, Faroe Islands, Malta, Kosovo
Group D4: FYR Macedonia, Armenia, Liechtenstein, Gibraltar

  • Teams have been split into four groups of four.
  • Due to excessive travel restrictions, any group could not contain a maximum of one of these pairs: Andorra & Kazakhstan, Faroe Islands & Kazakhstan, Gibraltar & Kazakhstan, Gibraltar & Azerbaijan
  • The four group winners are promoted to League C for the 2020 edition.
  • The top four ranked teams that do not qualify for UEFA EURO 2020 will enter a play-off in March 2020, with one finals place on offer.

  • Leagues A and B consist of four groups of three teams
  • League C comprises one group of three teams and three groups of four sides
  • League D is formed by four groups of four teams
  • The League Phase Draw for the UEFA Nations League took place at the SwissTech Convention Centre in Lausanne on 24 January 2018.
  • In each league, four group winners are promoted (or play in the Finals, see below) and four teams are relegated for the next competition to be played in 2020.
  • The overall UEFA Nations League rankings will determine the composition of the draw pots for the subsequent European Qualifiers.
  • In addition, the UEFA Nations League will provide teams with another chance to qualify for the UEFA EURO final tournament, with four sides qualifying through play-off matches which take place in March 2020 (see below).

When will the UEFA Nations League take place?

The UEFA Nations League will take place as follows:

  • See the full fixture list.
  • The UEFA Nations League group games are being held over six matchdays, during the 'double-headers' in September, October and November 2018. The UEFA Nations League Finals competition for the teams that win the four groups within the top division is scheduled for June 2019.
  • For the UEFA Nations League Finals, the group winners of UEFA Nations League A will play in a knockout format (semi-finals, third-place match and final) in June 2019 to become the UEFA Nations League winners. One host country will be formally appointed by the UEFA Executive Committee in December 2018 from one of the nations competing in the final four. Italy, Poland and Portugal (all in Group A3) have expressed interest.
  • The play-off matches will be staged in March 2020 (see below).

Will qualifying for the UEFA EURO change?

The changes to UEFA EURO qualifying will make it more streamlined. The equation is now simple: ten groups with the top two teams in each group qualifying automatically, and the other four places being awarded to European Qualifiers play-off winners, in which the 16 group winners of the UEFA Nations League will be in contention.

The UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying draw will be made after the completion of the UEFA Nations League and allow for the four UEFA Nations League Finals participants to be drawn into groups of five teams.

But the key principle of the qualifiers remains: that every team can play every team.

The European Qualifiers for UEFA EURO 2020 commence in March 2019. There will be two matchdays in each of March, June, September, October and November 2019. In total, there will be five groups of five teams and five groups of six teams (ten groups in all) playing over ten matchdays (the same number as now). The winner and runner-up in each of the ten groups will qualify automatically for the UEFA EURO 2020 final tournament (June 2020).

  • The last four EURO places will be won through the European Qualifiers play-offs, which will take place in March 2020 and which will be contested by the 16 UEFA Nations League group winners.
  • If a group winner has already qualified via the European Qualifiers, then their spot will go to the next best-ranked team in their league. If a league does not have four teams to compete, the remaining slots are allocated to teams from another league, according to the overall UEFA Nations League ranking.  
  • Each league will have a path of its own and each path will feature two single-leg semi-finals and one single-leg final. The winner of each path will win a ticket to UEFA EURO 2020.

How are the overall UEFA Nations League rankings calculated?

Within each league (A, B, C and D), the overall ranking will be calculated based on position in the group then points, goal difference, goals scored, away goals scored, wins, away wins, disciplinary points, coefficient ranking.

What are the advantages for national associations and teams?

National associations and coaches, in consultations with UEFA, revealed that they feel that friendly internationals are not providing adequate sporting competition. The UEFA Nations League creates more meaningful and competitive matches for teams and a dedicated calendar and structure for national team football.

Top teams can also aspire to take part in the UEFA Nations League Finals, a new top-level event.

For middle-ranking and smaller nations, the UEFA Nations League will offer an extra way to qualify for UEFA EURO final tournaments. Lower-tier countries – the bottom 16 in the rankings – are now guaranteed one of the 24 qualifying slots for UEFA EURO.

Lower-ranking teams who have struggled against sides ranked considerably higher than them will now get the chance to take part in balanced matches. Teams do not learn and progress by repeatedly losing; now some sides will start winning.

While the UEFA Nations League will replace most friendly internationals, there will still be space in the calendar for friendlies, especially for top teams who may want to face opposition from outside Europe as they will be in groups of three teams.

Associations and teams benefit from clarity of the fixture calendar, and there is now a clear buffer between the end of the UEFA EURO and FIFA World Cup, and vice versa, as well as stability of income.

What are the advantages for supporters?

Supporters more than most realise that most friendlies fail to deliver competitive and meaningful football. Now they will have the opportunity to see their teams play in more competitive matches, take part in a new competition and get a second chance to qualify for the major tournaments.

In every even year there are World Cup or UEFA EURO champions; now in every odd year there will be a UEFA Nations League winners. Football is about competition and now, just like in club football, there will be a national team champion at the close of every season.

Will this mean more demands on players and clubs?

No: the UEFA Nations League and European Qualifiers will adhere to the existing agreed international match calendar. UEFA is always keen to preserve the balance between club and international football. The new competition should, in fact, reduce demands on players and clubs with less travel envisaged for friendly games while national teams will be playing more consistently at their own level. With double-header matchweeks, players will even go back to their clubs earlier than is currently the case.

Is this just about generating more revenue?

No, finances are not a driver for the new competition. However, the competition will have the same centralised media rights as have recently been introduced for all European Qualifiers so associations will have even more stability in their income.

Will there be no more friendly internationals?

There will certainly be fewer friendly internationals and undoubtedly fewer meaningless friendlies. However, there will still be space in the calendar for friendly internationals – particularly warm-up matches for final tournaments. UEFA is also keen that European teams will still have the chance to play opponents from other confederations.


Match-by-match lineups Only this chapter


  • UEFA Nations League - Group stage – final tournament
    Group A2 - Group Standings
    Matchday 2 (11/09/2018)
    Iceland 0-3 Belgium
    0-1 E. Hazard 29 (P) , 0-2 R. Lukaku 31, 0-3 R. Lukaku 81
    Courtois, Alderweireld, Kompany, Vertonghen, Witsel, R. Lukaku, E. Hazard (89 T. Hazard), Carrasco (70 Chadli), Mertens, Meunier, Tielemans (80 Dembélé)
  • Matchday 3 (12/10/2018)
  • Matchday 5 (15/11/2018)
  • Matchday 6 (18/11/2018)


  • UEFA Nations League - Group stage – final tournament
    Matchday 1 (08/09/2018)
    Switzerland 6-0 Iceland
    1-0 St. Zuber 13, 2-0 Zakaria 23, 3-0 Shaqiri 53, 4-0 Seferović 67, 5-0 Al. Ajeti 71, 6-0 Mehmedi 82
    Sommer, Mbabu, Akanji, Embolo (65 Al. Ajeti), Seferović (72 Mehmedi), Xhaka, Rodríguez, St. Zuber (79 Sow), Zakaria, Schär, Shaqiri
  • Matchday 3 (12/10/2018)
  • Matchday 4 (15/10/2018)
  • Matchday 6 (18/11/2018)

Last updated 11/10/2018 15:07CET



  • Disclaimer: Although UEFA has taken all reasonable care that the information contained within this document is accurate at the time of publication, no representation or guarantee (including liability towards third parties), expressed or implied, is made as to its accuracy, reliability or completeness. Therefore, UEFA assumes no liability for the use or interpretation of information contained herein. More information can be found in the competition regulations available on