UEFA Nations League - 2018/19 SeasonMatch press kits
|Greece||OAKA Spiros Louis - AthensThursday 15 November 2018|
20.45CET (21.45 local time) Group C2 - Matchday 5
|15/10/2018||GS-FT||Finland - Greece||2-0||Tampere||Soiri 46, Kamara 89|
|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 12/11/2018 13:41CET
|7||Robin Lod||17/04/1993||25||Sporting Gijón||-||4||0|
|9||Eero Markkanen||03/07/1991||27||Dalkurd FF||-||1||0|
Last updated 15/11/2018 11:07CET
Date of birth: 3 October 1953
Playing career: PAOK, Panathinaikos, Korinthos, Diagora
Coaching career: Diagora, Panargeiako, PAOK (three times), Iraklis (twice), Panathinaikos, Cyprus, PAS Giannina, Platanias, AEL Larissa, Greece
• Salonika-born Anastasiadis began his playing career with local club PAOK, serving the first team for eight years during which he won both major domestic trophies and collected a dozen caps for the Greek national team.
• Left for Panathinaikos in 1981, winning the Greek Cup in his first season and the domestic double in his third, which also proved to be his last, his career subsequently ending on the island of Rhodes with Diagoras.
• Did not start coaching until the mid-1990s, and paid his dues in Greece's lower leagues before landing the top job at PAOK in 1997. Had two spells with Iraklis sandwiching an eventful 2000/01 season at Panathinaikos, during which he led the Greens into the second group phase of the UEFA Champions League, eliminating Juventus and Hamburger SV en route.
• Returned for a second spell at PAOK in 2002 and led them to Greek Cup success in his first season, beating local rivals Aris Thessaloniki FC 1-0 in the final. After leaving PAOK in September 2004 he was appointed three months later as national team coach of Cyprus – a position he would hold for more than six years, during which the island nation enjoyed some of their finest ever results.
• After leaving the Cyprus job in the spring of 2011 he returned to Greece, eventually finding his way back home again to PAOK, but he had been out of work for two years – following a short spell at Larissa – when in October 2018 the call came for him to replace Michael Skibbe as the new national team coach of Greece.
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.
|Name||Date of birth||UEFA matches|
No such matches refereed
|23/05/2009||U19||ELITE||Turkey||Greece||2-1||Torres Novas (P)|
|23/07/2009||UEL||2QR||FC Lahti||ND Gorica||2-0||Lahti|
|03/10/2013||UEL||GS||AZ Alkmaar||PAOK FC||1-1||Alkmaar|
|29/09/2016||UEL||GS||RC Celta de Vigo||Panathinaikos FC||2-0||Vigo|
|22/02/2017||UEL||R32||FC Schalke 04||PAOK FC||1-1||Gelsenkirchen|
|08/08/2018||UCL||3QR||Celtic FC||AEK Athens FC||1-1||Glasgow|
Last updated 13/11/2018 11:09CET
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 12/11/2018 13:40CET