Football in Liechtenstein
|Football in Liechtenstein|
|Governing body||Liechtenstein Football Association|
|National team(s)||men's national team|
One of the most popular sports in Liechtenstein is football.
Men's national football team
In the qualification for the World Cup in Germany in 2006, they achieved two victories and two draws (2–2 against Portugal and 0–0 Slovakia). In the qualification for the EURO 2008 they gained seven points in a tough group with Spain, Sweden, Northern Ireland, Denmark, Latvia and Iceland.
Women's national football team
In 1985, almost no country in the world had a women's national football team, including Liechtenstein who did not have a team by 2006 on either the senior or youth level. The women's national team has never competed at the Women's World Cup not entered the European Championship for Women. The team did not play in any FIFA sanctioned matches between 1970 and the present. In March 2012, the team was not ranked in the FIFA world. In 2013, President of the Liechtenstein Football Association Matthias Voigt said he was committed towards working on the creation of a women's national team, and pointed to the activity level in the women's domestic competition. Despite this comment, the federation had no staff dedicated to women's football as of 2017 and also didn't have a Women’s football committee. Inclusion of women in governance was also limited, with only one woman serving on a committee and only 5 women serving in managerial positions within the organization.  In 2017, a senior women's national team still did not exist.
Men's domestic football
Due to lack of active football teams, Liechtenstein is the only UEFA member nation not to have their own league and hence does not have any spots in the UEFA Champions League. Club sides play in the Swiss leagues, with FC Vaduz currently playing in the highest Swiss division. Between 1934 and 1937, beside the Swiss Football Association, Liechtenstein's clubs were affiliates of St. Gallen Cantonal Football Association, where they had a tournament of Liechtenstein's clubs only, that determined the Liechtenstein's Champion. FC Triesen won the competition in 1934, 1935 and 1937. Since 1945, the tiny principality has had its own cup competition, the winners of which are guaranteed entry into the Europa League qualification.
Mario Frick holds the record for most appearances and goals scored for Liechtenstein, and also played in football leagues around Europe.
However, it's still possible for the teams in Liechtenstein to participate the UEFA Champions League, but there is only one way in the current system. For example:
- The Liechtenstein Football Cup champion wins the 2018–19[nb 1] UEFA Europa League.
- Then, the team enters the 2019–20[nb 1] UEFA Champions League.
- For the example.
There are seven football teams in Liechtenstein:
|FC Balzers||5 - Swiss 2. Liga Interregional||Sportplatz Rheinau||2,000|
|USV Eschen/Mauren||4 - Swiss 1. Liga||Sportpark Eschen-Mauren||2,000|
|FC Ruggell||6 - Swiss 2. Liga||Freizeitpark Widau||500|
|FC Schaan||8 - Swiss 4. Liga||Sportanlage Rheinwiese||1,500|
|FC Triesen||8 - Swiss 4. Liga||Sportanlage Blumenau||2,100|
|FC Triesenberg||7 - Swiss 3. Liga||Sportanlage Leitawies||800|
|FC Vaduz||2 - Swiss Challenge League||Rheinpark Stadion||7,584|
Women's domestic football
Women's football officially began in the country in 1998, and faced a number of structural, population and geographic hurdles. Representatives from the country participated in a 2014 study group called "Women´s football in Iceland" as visitors. Their delegation was headed by Monika Burgmeier, along with top level women's club coaches Stefan Negele, Anton Kindle and Walter Vogt. Burgmeier presented a session called, "Women’s football in Liechtenstein". The following year, the Liechtenstein Football Association formally created a program to work towards the development of women's football in the country. According to the Liechtenstein Football Association, this began to bear fruit in 2017. In September 2017, as part of a program with FIFA, kits. safety equipment and training materials were provided to 200 girls in the country to encourage their participation in the sport.
Volleyball was the most popular women's sport in the country, with football ranking in the 6th or 7th most popular in the country. By 2017, football had supplanted volleyball as the most popular women's sport. In 2006, there were 165 registered female players in the country. This represented growth from 72 players in 2000. Liechtenstein Football Association was founded in 1934, and became affiliated with FIFA in 1976. Less than 3% of the national federation's budget is earmarked for women's football, compared to 9% for men and 17% for youth. There were 283 registered female players in 2016, with a decline in 2017 to 259 registered players. 61 of these players in 2017 were 18+, while 198 were youth players. The ratio of male to female coaches was 89:11 in 2017. 4 of these women coaches were UEFA B licence holders while another 4 were National C licence holders. There was one qualified female referee in the country in 2017, and she only worked women's games. Girls played football in mixed groups as part of their organized school curriculum.
The women's version of sport had developed enough that there were two women's club sides, FC Ruggel and Triesen/Balzers who had played in Nationalliga B Women in Switzerland. FC Ruggel was active in 2008 while Triesen/Balzers was active in 2014. Playing in Switzerland is the norm for most women's clubs in the country as a result of the size of their population and its location. There is also an active women's legue supported by the Liechtenstein Football Association.  It had 4 teams in 2017. The league was not professional, with all the players being domestic ones. Average attendance at league matches was 30 people in 2017.
- Chrös McDougall (1 January 2012). Soccer. ABDO. p. 45. ISBN 978-1-61783-146-1. Retrieved 13 April 2012.
- FIFA (2006). "Women's Football Today" (PDF): 117. Retrieved 17 April 2012.
- Ballard, John; Suff, Paul (1999). The dictionary of football : the complete A-Z of international football from Ajax to Zinedine Zidane. London: Boxtree. pp. 359–360. ISBN 0752224344. OCLC 59442612.
- "Liechtenstein: Fixtures and Results". Retrieved 2012-04-15.
- "The FIFA Women's World Ranking". FIFA.com. 2009-09-25. Retrieved 2012-04-13.
- Farrell, Callum. "Head of Liechtenstein FA outlines the way forward towards success". Here Is The City. Retrieved 2018-01-01.
- UEFA (2017). "Women's football across the national associations 2017" (PDF). Women’s football in Europe.
- "Liechtenstein [Women] - Players and coaches from A-Z". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 2018-01-01.
- "When Saturday Comes – Border crossing". Wsc.co.uk. 2012-07-09. Retrieved 2013-12-04.
- "Geschichte". fctriesen.li. 6 February 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2018.
- "Development Turnier 2017". www.lfv.li (in German). 2017-05-05. Retrieved 2018-01-01.
- "Frauenfussball" (in German). 2016-09-27. Retrieved 2018-01-03.
- "Liechtenstein: FIFA Goal Programme". FIFA.com. Retrieved 2012-04-15.
- "Teams - Women Soccerway". int.women.soccerway.com. Retrieved 2018-01-01.
- "Liechtenstein - FC Triesen/Balzers - Results, fixtures, squad, statistics, photos, videos and news - Women Soccerway". int.women.soccerway.com. Retrieved 2018-01-01.