Germany v Serbia facts
Tuesday, 18 June 2019
Germany and Serbia have met twice already at the U21 final tournament, with history suggesting a close contest.
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Germany and Serbia are set to meet in the UEFA European Under-21 Championship final tournament for the third time, with history suggesting a tight contest at the Stadio Nereo Rocco in Trieste.
• Holders Germany kicked off the finals with a 3-1 defeat of Denmark, Marco Richter scoring in either half with Luca Waldschmidt adding the third. Serbia, meanwhile, lost their opening fixture 2-0 to debutants Austria, ending with ten men after Vukašin Jovanović's 75th-minute red card.
• Both the countries' previous competitive meetings came in the group stage. Germany's Eugen Polanski scored the only goal when the teams met on matchday one of the 2006 finals, although it was Serbia and Montenegro, as they were then, who went on to the knockout stages after finishing as Group A runners-up to France; Germany finished fourth in the section on a three-way head-to-head.
• The points were shared when the teams met in Prague on matchday one at the 2015 competition, both goals coming in the first 17 minutes. Filip Djuričić gave Serbia an eighth-minute lead, Emre Can levelling nine minutes later. This time it was Germany who progressed to the semi-finals in second place behind Denmark; Serbia finished fourth, with the point from that draw their sole return of the finals.
• Markus Schubert was in the Germany side that beat Serbia 2-0 in the European U19 Championship elite round in March 2017. Luka Adžić, Uroš Račić, Igor Zlatanović, plus substitute Aleksa Terzić, featured for Serbia.
• Luka Jović was on target in Serbia's 2-2 group stage draw against Germany at the 2014 U19 EURO. Jovanović, Srdjan Babić, Andrija Živković and Danilo Pantić also featured with Milan Gajić an unused substitute; Levin Öztunalı was in the Germany side.
• Ivan Šaponjić scored for a Serbia side also including Jović in a 1-1 draw against Germany in the 2014 European U17 Championship elite round. Benjamin Henrichs played for Germany.
• Germany were champions in 2017, their second U21 title following their 2009 success in Sweden. Two years ago in Poland, they finished second in Group C, qualifying for the semi-finals as the best runners-up over the three sections; they beat England 4-3 on penalties in the last four after a 2-2 draw before a Mitchell Weiser goal earned a 1-0 final win against Spain.
• This is the eighth time Germany have qualified for an eight or 12-team final tournament. Aside from their two titles, they were semi-finalists in 2015 and quarter-finalists in 1998. They also reached the last eight in 1990, 1992 and 1996.
• As West Germany, they were runners-up to England in 1982.
• Germany qualified for these finals as Group 5 winners, picking up 25 points from their ten fixtures (W8 D1 L1) and scoring 33 goals – the most of any of the 11 qualified teams, though non-qualifiers Portugal matched that figure. Germany won their last three qualifying fixtures, the matchday one win against Denmark extending their unbeaten competitive run to eight games (W7 D1).
• A 1-0 loss against Italy on matchday three in 2017 ended Germany's six-match unbeaten run in the final tournament group stage (W4 D2).
• Four members of Germany's squad were in the victorious 2017 party; Öztunalı, Waldemar Anton, Mahmoud Dahoud and Nadiem Amiri. Anton was a late replacement for Jonathan Tah.
• Öztunalı was also part of the victorious Germany side at the 2014 European U19 Championship in Hungary.
• Lukas Nmecha scored England's winner in both the semi-final and the final at the 2017 European U19 Championship; having switched his international allegiance, the Hamburg-born striker made his Germany U21 debut against England in March.
• 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. The loss to Austria on matchday one means they are without a win in their last 11 games in the final tournament (D4 L7).
• 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 having both finished goalless, the matchday one has extended their scoreless run in competitive football to 272 minutes.
Links and trivia
• Jović was at Eintracht Frankfurt between 2017 and 4 June 2019, when he signed a six-year contract at Real Madrid. The Serbian forward scored 25 goals in 54 Bundesliga appearances for the club, including 17 in 2018/19 when he added another ten in Eintracht's run to the UEFA Europa League semi-finals.
• Tah and Lukas Klostermann both played 90 minutes in Germany's 2-0 UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying win away to Belarus on 8 June.
• Nikola Milenković and 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.