UEFA Nations League - 2018/19 SeasonMatch press kits
|Finland||Tampere Stadion - TampereMonday 15 October 2018|
20.45CET (21.45 local time) Group C2 - Matchday 4
|04/09/2015||QR (GS)||Greece - Finland||0-1||Piraeus||Pohjanpalo 75|
|11/10/2014||QR (GS)||Finland - Greece||1-1||Helsinki||Hurme 55; Karelis 24|
|05/09/2001||QR (GS)||Finland - Greece||5-1||Helsinki||Forssell 14, 45, Riihilahti 21, Kolkka 38, Litmanen 53; Karagounis 30|
|07/10/2000||QR (GS)||Greece - Finland||1-0||Athens||Liberopoulos 59|
|11/06/1995||PR (GS)||Finland - Greece||2-1||Helsinki||Litmanen 44 (P), Hjelm 54; Nikolaidis 6|
|12/10/1994||PR (GS)||Greece - Finland||4-0||Salonika||Markos 22, Batista 69, Machlas 76, 89|
|30/10/1991||PR (GS)||Greece - Finland||2-0||Athens||Saravakos 49, Borbokis 51|
|09/10/1991||PR (GS)||Finland - Greece||1-1||Helsinki||Ukkonen 50; Tsalouchidis 74|
|11/10/1978||PR (GS)||Greece - Finland||8-1||Athens||Nikoloudis 15, 25, Delikaris 23, 47, Mavros 38, 44, 75 (P), Galakos 81; Heiskanen 61|
|24/05/1978||PR (GS)||Finland - Greece||3-0||Helsinki||Ismail 35, 82, Nieminen 80|
|10/05/1967||PR (GS)||Finland - Greece||1-1||Helsinki||Peltonen 18; Chaitas 39|
|16/10/1966||PR (GS)||Greece - Finland||2-1||Salonika||Alexiadis 39, 86; Mäkipää 57|
Last updated 13/10/2018 22:05CET
|7||Robin Lod||17/04/1993||25||Sporting Gijón||-||3||0|
|11||Rasmus Schüller||18/06/1991||27||Minnesota United||-||3||0|
|9||Eero Markkanen||03/07/1991||27||Dalkurd FF||-||1||0|
|6||Alexandros Tziolis||13/02/1985||33||Al-Fayha FC||-||2||0|
Last updated 15/10/2018 10:40CET
Date of birth: 24 May 1964
Playing career: HJK Helsinki (twice), Elfsborg, FinnPa
Coaching career: HJK Helsinki (assistant), Viikingit, Finland Under-21s, Finland (caretaker, twice), Finland (assistant), Finland
• A defender in his playing days, Markku Kanerva started out at home-town club HJK and won five Finnish titles and three Finnish Cups over two spells, returning for four years until his retirement in 1998 after an initial stay from 1983 to 1990.
• Contested five games in the 1998/99 UEFA Champions League with HJK, having rejoined after stints with Swedish side Elfsborg and Finnish outfit FinnPa; Kanerva also picked up 59 caps for his national team, scoring once.
• Began his coaching career as an assistant at HJK before briefly holding the reins at Viikingit in 2003 and entering the Football Association of Finland (SPL-FBF) coaching set-up the following year.
• Took charge of Finland's U21s between 2004 and 2009, earning recognition as Finland's coach of the year in 2008 after booking the side a historic maiden place at the 2009 UEFA European U21 Championship finals.
• Assistant coach of Finland's senior team between 2010 and 2016, Kanerva took over in an interim capacity in both 2011 and 2015 before being handed the role full time as Hans Backe's replacement in December 2016. A home win against Iceland was the highlight of the unsuccessful qualifying campaign for the 2018 FIFA World Cup.
Date of birth: 4 August 1965
Playing career: Schalke
Coaching career: Borussia Dortmund, Germany (assistant), Bayer Leverkusen, Galatasaray, Eintracht Frankfurt, Eskişehirspor (twice), Hertha Berlin, Karabükspor, Grasshoppers, Greece
• Michael Skibbe started out as a midfielder at home-town club Schalke; however, the former youth international made just 15 first-team appearances before a series of cruciate injuries forced him to abandon his playing career in his early 20s.
• Impressing as a youth coach at Schalke and Dortmund, Skibbe became the youngest boss in Bundesliga history when he was given the senior job at Dortmund aged 32 in July 1998.
• Worked in tandem with Rudi Völler during the latter's time as Germany coach, reaching the 2002 FIFA World Cup final, but the pair resigned after the national team's early exit from UEFA EURO 2004. Skibbe returned to club football, coaching Leverkusen from 2005–08.
• First ventured abroad to coach Galatasaray from 2008–09. Went back to Turkey three more times, twice leading Eskişehirspor and briefly taking charge of Karabükspor. Had a longer stint in Switzerland with Grasshoppers.
• Hired as Greece coach in late October 2015, tasked with directing their 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifying attempt after failure to reach UEFA EURO 2016; took them to the play-offs, where they were beaten by eventual runners-up Croatia.
|Name||Date of birth||UEFA matches|
Referee since: 1995
First division: 2005
FIFA badge: 2009
Tournaments: 2013 UEFA European Under-21 Championship, 2011 UEFA European Under-19 Championship, 2009 UEFA European Under-17 Championship
No such matches refereed
|20/07/2011||U19||GS-FT||Greece||Republic of Ireland||1-2||Buftea|
|06/12/2012||UEL||GS||Tottenham Hotspur FC||Panathinaikos FC||3-1||London|
|30/07/2014||UCL||3QR||HJK Helsinki||APOEL FC||2-2||Helsinki|
|11/12/2014||UEL||GS||FK Partizan||Asteras Tripolis FC||0-0||Belgrade|
|29/09/2016||UEL||GS||Olympiacos FC||APOEL FC||0-1||Piraeus|
|28/09/2017||UEL||GS||AEK Athens FC||FK Austria Wien||2-2||Athens|
Last updated 14/10/2018 03:11CET
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.
Group A1: Germany, France, Netherlands
Group A2: Belgium, Switzerland, Iceland
Group A3: Portugal, Italy, Poland
Group A4: Spain, England, Croatia
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
Group C1: Scotland, Albania, Israel
Group C2: Hungary, Greece, Finland, Estonia
Group C3: Slovenia, Norway, Bulgaria, Cyprus
Group C4: Romania, Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania
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
The UEFA Nations League will take place as follows:
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).
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Last updated 13/10/2018 22:07CET