UEFA.com works better on other browsers
For the best possible experience, we recommend using Chrome, Firefox or Microsoft Edge.

Serbia and Montenegro debut

A new name appears in European football tomorrow night when the former Yugoslavia meet Azerbaijan.

The name of Serbia and Montenegro will appear for the first time in senior European football tomorrow night when the former Yugoslavia take on Azerbaijan.

Formal ratification
The country's new name has been formally ratified by the United Nations and recognised by the European and International houses of football, UEFA and FIFA. Serbia and Montenegro has the same borders as Yugoslavia but a new constitution has been formed. As a consequence, the Football Association of Yugoslavia (FSJ), after 83 years of existence, has been renamed the Football Association of Serbia and Montenegro (FSSCG).

'Victories bring joy'
Wednesday's UEFA EURO 2004™ qualifier against Azerbaijan in Podgorica will see the home team playing under its new name for the first time. The new name will also be used for the Under-21 match with the Azeris this afternoon. National coach Dejan Savicevic said: "My priority is victory over Azerbaijan on Wednesday, whether our name is Yugoslavia or Serbia and Montenegro. Our people want to see victories which will bring them joy."

'Our job is football'
Serbo-Montenegrin football officials insist that the change in name will in no way adversely affect football in the country. "We carry on where we stopped. Our primary interest is the EURO 2004™ qualifiers," said FSSCG general secretary Branko Bulatovic. "In our organisation we don't do politics. Our job is football. Serbia and Montenegro have gone through difficult times in the past decade and the Football Association has proudly defended the nation's name."

Top flight unaffected
The country's top division, the Prva savezna liga, will stay unchanged. "It is possible that at a later stage we will change the name of the top flight, but for the current season we will finish as it was started," Bulatovic said.
Colours remain for now
The flag of the former Yugoslavia hanging outside the United Nations seat in New York will for the time being continue to represent the new country, allowing Serbia and Montenegro to keep wearing their traditional blue, white and red shirts with the old FSJ's symbols on.

Decisions to make
The new parliament of the new state, once assembled, will in due course make decisions about a new national flag, anthem and state symbols. "As soon as political officials decide about these changes, we will act accordingly," Bulatovic said.

Results important
FSSCG president Dragan Stojkovic added: "For me the most important thing is that we qualify for EURO 2004™ in Portugal. Under which name we do this is less important. In football no one will judge us on our name, but on the results we have achieved."

FA history
The Yugoslav Football Association originally comprised Serbians, Croatians and Slovenians. Since its foundation in 1919, the FSJ has lived through four state and name changes, but has been continually based in Belgrade. In total the national team of Yugoslavia has played 505 official internationals, with 293 victories, 87 defeats and 125 draws.