Gibraltar national football team
|Association||Gibraltar Football Association|
|Head coach||Jeff Wood|
|Most caps||Joseph Chipolina (16)|
|Top scorer||Jake Gosling (2)|
|Home stadium||Victoria Stadium (Friendlies)
Estádio Algarve (Qualifiers)
|Current||179 (9 September 2015)|
|Highest||174 (March 2011)|
|Lowest||188 (July 1995)|
| Gibraltar 0–0 Slovakia
(Faro, Portugal; 19 November 2013)
| Gibraltar 1–0 Malta
(Faro, Portugal; 4 June 2014)
| Gibraltar 0–7 Poland
(Faro, Portugal; 7 September 2014)
Republic of Ireland 7–0 Gibraltar
(Dublin, Republic of Ireland; 11 October 2014)
Gibraltar 0–7 Germany
(Faro, Portugal; 13 June 2015)
Poland 8–1 Gibraltar
(Warsaw, Poland; 7 September 2015)
The Gibraltar national football team represents Gibraltar in football competitions and is controlled by the Gibraltar Football Association. It is not yet a full member of FIFA and is therefore not eligible to enter the World Cup. Gibraltar applied for full UEFA membership and was accepted by the UEFA Congress in May 2013 and can therefore compete in the UEFA European Championship beginning with the 2016 tournament for which the team has been competing in UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying Group D. With a population of 30,000 Gibraltar is the smallest UEFA member in terms of population.
- 1 History
- 2 Recent results and forthcoming fixtures
- 3 Players
- 4 Player history
- 5 Gibraltar managers
- 6 Personnel
- 7 Stadium
- 8 See also
- 9 Footnotes
- 10 References
- 11 External links
Gibraltar's first unofficial national match took place against Jersey in the 1993 Island Games in the Isle of Wight, although the team had previously played friendlies versus professional and amateur clubs. The result was a 2–1 loss for the Gibraltarians. Gibraltar's largest unofficial win was a 19–0 thrashing of Sark, in St. Martin, Guernsey, whilst their largest unofficial loss was 5–0 versus Greenland – an autonomous region of Denmark – which also took part on the Isle of Wight, in Freshwater.
The history of the Gibraltarian national football side can be traced back to April 1923, when it travelled to Spain to play club side Sevilla in a friendly; two games were played and Gibraltar lost both. The side also managed a draw with Real Madrid in 1949.
Before joining UEFA, Gibraltar competed in numerous football competitions, most regularly in the Island Games.
The first competition the team entered was the 1993 Island Games, despite Gibraltar not being an island. Gibraltar lost all of its matches, scoring only one goal and finishing in last place.
They had much more success in the 1995 Island Games, which they hosted. Despite losing their opening game against Greenland, Gibraltar bounced back to record their first competitive win, against the Isle of Man. Another victory over Anglesey saw Gibraltar finish second in the group, ahead of Anglesey only on goal difference, and qualify for the semi finals. There, they beat Jersey 1–0, before losing the final to the Isle of Wight by the same scoreline.
In the 1997 Island Games, two wins and two losses in the group stage, followed by a defeat to Shetland in a playoff, saw Gibraltar finish 6th out of 9 teams. Another poor performance in 1999 saw them finish 11th.
Island Games results improved slightly in 2001, as they came 5th, and in 2003 Gibraltar recorded their biggest win ever, defeating Sark 19–0. Other good results against Greenland and Orkney saw them finish 6th out of 12. Despite these minor successes, Gibraltar did not enter the 2005 tournament.
A football team represented Gibraltar at the 2015 edition of the games even after Gibraltar was accepted by UEFA. However, the squad was a development team composed of under-19s and over-aged players with no first team senior squad members taking part. The team will be coached by John Moreno.
|1989–1991||Did not enter||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|1993||7th Place Match||8||4||0||0||4||1||9|
|1997||5th Place Match||6||5||2||0||3||13||8|
|1999||11th Place Match||11||4||1||0||3||9||11|
|2001||5th Place Match||5||4||3||0||1||7||2|
|2003||5th Place Match||6||5||3||0||2||29||5|
|2005||Did not enter||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|2009||9th Place Match||9||4||2||1||1||12||3|
|2011||5th Place Match||5||3||2||0||1||14||7|
|2013||Did not enter||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A|
|2015[nb 1]||9th Place Match||10||4||1||1||2||3||6|
- *Gold background colour indicates that the tournament was won. Red border colour indicates tournament was held on home soil.
FIFI "Wild Cup"
In early summer 2006 Gibraltar participated in the 2006 FIFI Wild Cup where it was ranked 3rd. The tournament was an alternative World Cup for non FIFA members, which was only held once. In Gibraltar's opening match, they drew 1–1 with the hosts, the 'Republic of St. Pauli', before beating Tibet 5–0 in their second group game to qualify for the semi-finals. There they lost 2–0 to eventual champions Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. In the third place playoff, Gibraltar had a rematch against St. Pauli. This time Gibraltar were able to defeat the hosts, to finish in third place out of the six teams.
|2006||3rd Place Playoff||3||4||2||1||1||8||4|
2008 Four Nations
In 2008 Gibraltar accepted an invitation to participate in The Four Nations Tournament, the most prominent senior football tournament that Gibraltar had ever participated in. The 2008 Four Nations Tournament, won by England C, was played in North Wales, and was contested between Wales Semi-Pro, England C, Scotland B and guest nation Gibraltar after Northern Ireland decided not to take part. Though Gibraltar eventually finished bottom of the group, they pushed tournament winners England C close.
Record of matches
|Isle of Man||2||2||0||0||3||1|
|Isle of Wight||4||2||0||2||6||3|
Gibraltar is not yet a member of FIFA. However, the GFA aimed to become a full FIFA member in time to participate in 2018 FIFA World Cup qualification. On 26 September 2014, it was announced that Gibraltar's application for FIFA membership was denied, with president Sepp Blatter stating that Gibraltar is ineligible because it is not an independent country. This was despite FIFA at the time including 22 members that are not independent countries, including five in UEFA (Faroe Islands and the four Home Nations of the United Kingdom). The Gibraltar Football Association then announced that it planned to appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the same process by which Gibraltar successfully gained UEFA membership in 2013. The CAS heard Gibraltar's case on 21 May 2015. At which time no time frame for a verdict was announced and further legal arguments would still be heard. It was expected that no decision would be reached before the FIFA congress coming the following week.
Gibraltar first applied for UEFA membership in 1999 but was rejected because of intense opposition from Spain. Spain's opposition stemmed not only from claiming ownership of the territory but from fear that Gibraltar's acceptance would set a precedent that would inspire the separatist Basque national football team and Catalan national football teams to apply for UEFA membership as well. The issue was voted on again in 2007 but only three member nations (England, Scotland, and Wales) supported Gibraltar's bid after Spain threatened to withdraw Spanish teams from all UEFA competitions. UEFA then established rules, which were introduced following pressure from Spain, restricting membership to sovereign states recognised as such by the United Nations. The Gibraltar FA then went to the Court of Arbitration for Sport in 2007 and again in 2011 after an appeal and it was ruled that Gibraltar could not be refused membership because the sovereignty rules were not established until after Gibraltar's 1999 and 2007 applications. At this time, Gibraltar was named a provisional member of UEFA and was granted permission to enter national teams in under-17 and under-19 tournaments for the first time.
The GFA was accepted as a full UEFA member by resolution of the UEFA congress held in London on 24 May 2013, with only Spain and Belarus opposed. This meant Gibraltar became the smallest UEFA member by population, behind San Marino, then Liechtenstein and the Faroe Islands. As a result of the vote, the Gibraltar national team became eligible to enter the qualification tournaments for UEFA's premier national team competition, the European Championship. The first such opportunity was the Euro 2016 qualifying campaign, which would kick off in September 2014. Following the examples of Armenia-Azerbaijan and Russia-Georgia, it was confirmed that Gibraltar and Spain would be kept apart in qualifying groups.
After being accepted into UEFA, the GFA outlined adjusted eligibility criteria for the selection of players for the national squad. To be eligible, a player must be British passport-holders who were born in Gibraltar, have Gibraltarian parents or grandparents, or have attended school for five years locally. Former Manchester United, Derby County, Southampton and Stoke City defender Danny Higginbotham, whose uncle Allen Bula was the team manager, was eligible to be called up because of this criteria adjustment. On 18 September 2013, Higginbotham announced that he agreed in "principle" to play for Gibraltar. Recruiting of English-born players by manager Allen Bula was unpopular with some fans, and in 2015 Bula's successor Jeff Wood said he would use more home-based players and develop local talent while still searching for eligible players elsewhere.
Gibraltar's first official international match was a 0–0 friendly draw against Slovakia, on 19 November 2013 at the Estadio Algarve in Portugal. On 23 February 2014, Gibraltar was drawn in Group D for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying alongside Germany, Poland, Georgia, Republic of Ireland and Scotland. Initially, Gibraltar were drawn into the same group as Spain for the tournament but the previous decision to keep the two teams apart in qualifying rounds was upheld and Gibraltar was immediately moved into another group. This was their first time participating in an official European competition. In June 2014, Gibraltar recorded their first ever victory under UEFA with a 1–0 win against Malta, the goal coming from Kyle Casciaro.
Euro 2016 qualifying
On 7 September 2014, Gibraltar played their first competitive match – a Euro 2016 qualifier against Poland. Despite coming into the game with optimism and excitement, they were still massive underdogs and although the half time score was only 1–0 to Poland, it ended 7–0. On 11 October 2014, they were defeated once again by 7–0, this time by Republic of Ireland, in their second Euro 2016 qualifier. In their third match, they were beaten for the third time by Georgia 3–0.
On 29 March 2015, Gibraltar scored their first ever goal in a full international competitive match. Lee Casciaro scored against Scotland at Hampden Park, Glasgow during the first half to level the match at 1–1. However, Scotland went on to win 6–1. In July 2015, Englishman Jeff Wood was appointed manager, succeeding caretaker Dave Wilson who took over from Gibraltar's first manager Allen Bula in March 2015. Gibraltar could not repeat their performance of scoring a goal in the next two matches; losing 7–0 away against Germany and 4–0 against Republic of Ireland. On 7 September 2015, Jake Gosling scored Gibraltar's second-ever competitive goal; netting a late consolation goal as his team was defeated 8–1 by Poland. Gibraltar finished its maiden qualifying campaign last in its group with zero points. With a 0–6 defeat to Scotland in the final match of qualifying, Gibraltar allowed 56 total goals throughout qualification, surpassing San Marino's previous record of 53 in a 10-match qualification process.
|UEFA Euro Record|
|1960 to 2012||Not a UEFA Member|
|2016||Did Not Qualify|
Record of matches
The following table shows Gibraltar's all-time international record, correct as of 11 October 2015. Only official matches are included.
|Republic of Ireland||2||0||0||2||0||11||−11|
Recent results and forthcoming fixtures
|29 March 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Scotland||6–1||Gibraltar||Glasgow, Scotland|
|18:00 CET (UTC+1)||Maloney 18' (pen.), 34' (pen.)
S. Fletcher 29', 77', 90'
|Report||L. Casciaro 19'||Stadium: Hampden Park
Referee: Mattias Gestranius (Finland)
|7 June 2015 Friendly||Croatia||4–0||Gibraltar||Varaždin, Croatia|
|19:00 CET (UTC+1)||Sharbini 7'
Mandžukić 53' (pen.)
|Report (Cro)||Stadium: Stadion Anđelko Herjavec
Referee: Matej Jug (Slovenia)
|13 June 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Gibraltar||0–7||Germany||Faro, Portugal|
|20:45 CEST (UTC+2)||Report||Schürrle 28', 65', 71'
Kruse 47', 81'
|Stadium: Estádio Algarve
Referee: Clayton Pisani (Malta)
|4 September 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Gibraltar||0–4||Republic of Ireland||Faro, Portugal|
|20:45 CEST (UTC+2)||Report||Christie 26'
Keane 49', 51'
|Stadium: Estádio Algarve
Referee: Marijo Strahonja (Croatia)
|7 September 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Poland||8–1||Gibraltar||Warsaw, Poland|
|20:45 CEST (UTC+2)||Grosicki 8', 15'
Lewandowski 19', 29'
Milik 56', 72'
Błaszczykowski 59' (pen.)
|Report||Gosling 87'||Stadium: National Stadium
Referee: Gediminas Mažeika (Lithuania)
|8 October 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Georgia||4–0||Gibraltar||Tbilisi, Georgia|
|18:00 CEST (UTC+2)||Vatsadze 30'
Okriashvili 35' (pen.)
|Report||Stadium: Dinamo Arena
Referee: Serhiy Boyko (Ukraine)
|11 October 2015 Euro 2016 Q||Gibraltar||0–6||Scotland||Faro, Portugal|
|20:45 CEST (UTC+2)||Report||Martin 25'
Fletcher 52', 56', 85'
|Stadium: Estádio Algarve
Referee: Aleksei Kulbakov (Belarus)
|23 March 2016 Friendly||Gibraltar||v||Liechtenstein||Gibraltar|
|Stadium: Victoria Stadium
The following 23 players were called up for the UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying matches against Georgia on 8 October 2015 and Scotland on 12 October 2015. Caps and goals are correct as of 11 October 2015 after the game against Scotland.
The following players have been called up within the past twelve months or withdrew from the current squad due to injury or suspension.
- INJ Withdrew from the squad due to an injury.
- PRE Preliminary squad.
- RET Retired from the national team.
As of 11 October 2015
As of 11 October 2015
Players with an equal number of goals are ranked in order of average.
As of 11 October 2015
|#||Player||Career||Captain Caps||Total Caps|
As of 11 October 2015
- ^1 Players in bold are still actively competing and are available for selection
- Up to date as of 11 October 2015
|Manager||Nation||Gibraltar career||Played||Won||Drawn||Lost||GF||GA||Win %|
|Bula, AllenAllen Bula||2013–2015||9||1||2||6||3||28||11.11|
|Wilson, DavidDavid Wilson||2015||3||0||0||3||1||17||0.00|
|Wood, JeffJeff Wood||2015–||4||0||0||4||1||22||0.00|
Current technical staff
|Head Coach||Jeff Wood|
|Assistant Coach||David Wilson|
|Head of logistics||Aaron Edwards|
|Goalkeeper Coach||Manuel Perez|
|Assistant Goalkeeper Coach||Karl Valarino|
|Team Doctor||Dr. Nathan Chichon|
|Team Physiotherapist||Iain Latin|
|Team Osteopath||Paul Knight|
|Massage Therapist||Gareth Henwood|
Before being accepted into UEFA, the team played its home games at Victoria Stadium, the 5,000-seat national stadium of Gibraltar. There are plans to replace the stadium with the proposed 10,000-seat Europa Point Stadium which was expected to be completed for UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying. Construction is expected to begin in October 2013. While the stadium is under construction, the team will play its home matches at Estádio Algarve about four hours away in Portugal since the Victoria Stadium does not meet UEFA standards for international matches. National team manager Allen Bula stated that the team would play at the stadium for "a few years" until the Europa Point Stadium is complete. Although the Victoria Stadium cannot be used for qualifying matches, it can be used for friendlies when Gibraltar chooses to do so.
Europa Point, site of proposed Europa Point Stadium
- Development team from 2015 edition onward
- "Team 54". Gibraltar Football Association. Retrieved 22 August 2014.
- "ELO Rankings". eloratings.net. Retrieved 20 November 2013.
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- Lafuente, Javier (24 May 2013). "Gibraltar mete un gol a España". El País (in Spanish). Retrieved 1 November 2013.
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- "Danny Higginbotham agrees to play for Gibraltar". Sky Sports. Retrieved 18 September 2013.
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- Doyle, Garry (11 October 2014). "We can reach play-offs, insists Gibraltar manager". Irish Independent. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
Higginbotham, who is Bula's nephew, is one of several English-born players who have been drafted in, much to the chagrin of some Gibraltarians, who have heaped abuse on the manager for doing so.
- Fitzmaurice, Aidan (3 September 2015). "'Green army not a worry for us', says Gibraltar boss Jeff Wood". The Herald. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
Gibraltar, bottom of Group D, have changed their approach of late: they're not so keen to recruit eligible players via the 'granny rule' but instead are intent on bring through home grown talent.
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- Wood takes permanent Gibraltar role – UEFA
- "Germany 7 – 0 Gibraltar". BBC Sport. 13 June 2015. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
- Hafez, Shamoon (4 September 2015). "Gibraltar 0 – 4 R. of Ireland". BBC Sport. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
- Kozminski, Piotr. "Lethal Poland too strong for Gibraltar". UEFA. Retrieved 7 September 2015.
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|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Gibraltar national association football team.|
- Official site of the Gibraltar Football Association
- UEFA Profile
- Island Games results
- FIFI World Cup results
- Spanish site about Gibraltar's inclusion into UEFA
- All-time results at Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation
- Unofficial website about Gibraltarian football, futsal and national team