Serbia v Austria facts
Wednesday, 12 June 2019
Austria make their finals debut against a Serbia side who are looking for a first tournament win since 2007.
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Austria make their debut in the UEFA European Under-21 Championship final tournament in Trieste against a Serbia side who have reached the group stage for the third successive edition of the competition.
• While this is uncharted territory for Austria, Serbia are looking to end a long run without a victory in the final tournament stretching back to 2007, ten matches ago.
• This is a fifth competitive meeting for the teams, who were also paired together in qualifying for these finals.
• Aleksandar Lutovac gave visitors Serbia a 30th-minute lead in Maria Enzersdorf on 10 November 2017 and, though Konrad Laimer levelled ten minutes from time, late goals from Luka Jović (87 penalty) and Luka Ilić (90+1) earned a 3-1 away victory.
• The second game between the sides, in Novi Sad on 12 October 2018, finished goalless – a result that confirmed Serbia's place in the final tournament.
• Yugoslavia won both games against Austria in the 1992 qualifying tournament, winning 1-0 at home and 2-1 away. Neither side reached the finals, with Denmark finishing top of the group.
• Christoph Baumgartner featured for Austria in a 1-1 U17 EURO qualifying round draw with Serbia in October 2015. Aleksa Terzić plus replacement Dejan Joveljić played for Serbia, with Austria's Dario Maresic an unused substitute.
• An Austria side featuring Alexander Schlager, Adrian Grbić and Sascha Horvath were 1-0 winners against Serbia in the European U17 Championship elite round in March 2013. Miloš Ostojić, Milan Gajić, Srđan Babić, Saša Lukić, Jović and substitutes Nemanja Radonjić and Andrija Živković were in the Serbia line-up.
• Serbia have qualified for the third tournament in a row, and the seventh time for an eight or 12-team finals. Their last three finals campaigns – in 2009, 2015 and 2017 – all ended winless in the group stage.
• Two years ago in Poland, Serbia finished third in Group B behind Spain and Portugal, picking up one point from their three matches. That means they are without a win in their last ten games in the final tournament (D4 L6).
• They were runners-up in 2004 and semi-finalists in 2006, both as Serbia and Montenegro, and 2007 runners-up as Serbia. As Yugoslavia they won the 1978 final and were runners-up in 1990, also reaching the last four in 1980 and 1984.
• Serbia were one of five teams to qualify unbeaten for the 2019 finals, finishing with 26 points – four clear of Austria – at the top of Group 7 after eight wins and two draws in their ten fixtures. Their last two qualifiers finished goalless, meaning they have not scored in 182 minutes of competitive football.
• This is Austria's first U21 tournament – the only team to be making their debut at the 2019 finals.
• Austria had only previously reached the play-offs twice, losing to Finland on penalties in 2009 qualifying after each side had won 2-1 at home and going out to Spain on away goals in 2017 (1-1 home, 0-0 away).
• This time round Austria were runners-up behind Serbia in qualifying Group 7, picking up 22 points (W7 D1 L2). They were unbeaten in their last six games (W5 D1) and have won their last three competitive matches having beaten Greece 1-0 both away and home in the play-offs.
• That made it eight games unbeaten for Austria – their longest competitive run without defeat since a nine-match sequence in 2007 and 2008 (W7 D2), which was ended by that 2-1 play-off loss in Finland.
Links and trivia
• Born in Vienna, Austria striker Sasa Kalajdzic has Serbian heritage.
• At 61, Austria's Werner Gregoritsch is the oldest coach at the final tournament.
• Nikola Milenković and Luka Jović started both of Serbia's recent UEFA EURO 2020 qualifiers, against Ukraine (0-5 away) and Lithuania (4-1 home), Jović scoring in the latter. Also involved against Lithuania were Saša Lukić and substitute Andrija Živković.
• Xaver Schlager played from start to finish in both of Austria's June matches in UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying, victories against Slovenia (1-0 home) and North Macedonia (4-1 away). Stefan Posch made his senior international debut as a half-time substitute in the latter.