A assured Serbia will head to Qatar boasting a wealthy vein of kind and a free-scoring Aleksandar Mitrovic up entrance.
Earlier World Cup appearances: 2
Greatest end: Group stage (2010, 2018)
World Cup document: W2 D0 L4
Greatest win: 1-0 v Germany (2010)
Participant to observe: Aleksandar Mitrovic
Fixtures: Brazil (November 24), Cameroon (November 28), Switzerland (December 2)
Serbia will probably be making its third look on the World Cup as an unbiased nation after debuting at South Africa 2010.
Serbia additionally performed in Russia 2018, the place they beat Costa Rica of their opening match, however did not qualify for the knockouts after dropping the subsequent two group matches towards Switzerland and Brazil.
They may open their 2022 marketing campaign towards their final World Cup opponents, and perennial event favourites, Brazil, on November 24. Brazil’s event pedigree won’t dampen the spirits of this well-knit Serbian facet, who’ve a powerful attacking pressure and have had a profitable run within the lead-up to the event.
Serbia completed their World Cup qualifying marketing campaign by beating Portugal away and topping their group. Captain Dusan Tadic credited coach Dragan Stojkovic with serving to the workforce to raise their efficiency in the course of the qualification section.
“The expertise of taking part in at a World Cup is significant,” Tadic advised Fifa.com. “Stojkovic has performed at a number of World Cups, scored objectives and supplied assists and is aware of every thing there may be to know. He passes all this data and expertise on to us, and we love working with him.”
The Serbian “legend” remodeled the workforce’s assault, bringing the specified outcomes. Serbia performed six UEFA Nations League matches this 12 months and received 4 of them.
Aleksandar Mitrovic has been in excellent kind for his nation. He top-scored of their World Cup qualifying group, forward of Cristiano Ronaldo, with eight objectives, and scored one other six within the Nations League.
The 28-year-old ahead is brimming with confidence forward of the event.
“We now have a tricky group with sturdy groups and wonderful gamers, however that’s why we play the sport,” he stated. “We wish to be there and compete with the very best – we are able to’t wait. I’m very assured, however I feel the entire workforce and the entire nation really feel the identical.”
Whereas Serbia have grow to be a pressure to be reckoned with in assault, their issues in defence have been uncovered. The retirement of Branislav Ivanovic and Aleksandar Kolarov could have helped on the flanks, but it surely has shorn them of expertise on the again.
Nevertheless, Stojkovic and his males will depend on the shut bonds and up to date expertise of defeating huge names to deliver them success in Qatar. It additionally helps that a lot of the squad members had been a part of the FIFA Below-20 World Cup successful squad from 2015.
Tadic believes that the expertise of successful on an enormous stage will assist his facet.
“A lot of the gamers within the present Serbia workforce belong to that era [Under-20 team], and I feel that’s going to be an enormous plus for us,” he stated.
If Serbia don’t handle to achieve the round-of-16, it is going to be seen as a disappointing end result for a workforce that has had a lot current success. Mitrovic could have an enormous position to play in making certain Serbia’s qualification, and he’s conscious of the accountability.
“You’re beneath a whole lot of stress whenever you’re a striker,” he admitted. “I like to attain and to really feel the stress on my shoulders. I do know what everybody expects from me.”
The workforce, he stated, is properly ready to fulfill the followers’ expectations.
“The very best is but to come back. We’re in our prime.”