Greenland national football team
(The Polar Teddy Bears)
|Head coach||Rene Olsen & Tekle Ghebrelul|
|Home stadium||Nuuk Stadium|
|FIFA code||GRL (not official)|
|Current||193 3 (10 October 2019)|
|Highest||186 (July 1980)|
|Lowest||203 (June 1993)|
| Faroe Islands 6–0 Greenland |
(Sauðárkrókur, Iceland; 2 July 1980)
| Greenland 16–0 Sark |
(St Martin's, Guernsey, Channel Islands; 1 July 2003)
| Faroe Islands 6–0 Greenland |
(Sauðárkrókur, Iceland; 2 July 1980)
Guernsey 6–0 Greenland
(Stromness, West Burra, Shetland; 13 July 2005)
Menorca 6–0 Greenland
(Åland Islands; 29 June 2009)
Isle of Man 6–0 Greenland
(Visby; 30 June 2017)
The Greenland national football team represents Greenland in international football. It is controlled by the Football Association of Greenland. Although it has the same status as the Faroe Islands within the Kingdom of Denmark, Greenland is not, like the Faroe Islands national football team, a member of FIFA nor of any continental confederation and therefore is not eligible to enter the World Cup or other sanctioned tournaments. Most of the matches they have played have been against the Faroe Islands and Iceland, but neither of the two consider those games full internationals. The Greenland national team are aiming to join FIFA in the near future.
The Football Association of Greenland was founded in 1971 to oversee the development of football in the territory, although an island-wide club championship had been held regularly since 1954. Greenland played its first international match on 2 July 1980 against another Danish territory, the Faroe Islands, losing 6–0. The match was played in Sauðárkrókur in Iceland as part of the Greenland Cup, a friendly tournament. In their second match on 3 July, Greenland played the hosts and full FIFA members Iceland in Húsavík, losing 4–1, finishing third in the tournament.
Three years later, they hosted the second Greenland Cup, however the 1983 format consisted of a single match between Greenland and the Faroe Islands to determine the winner. Played on 29 June in Nuuk, the match finished 0–0. Therefore a few days later, on 3 July the match was replayed, this time ending in a 3–2 victory for the Faroese.
The third and final Greenland Cup was played in the Faroe Islands in 1984, and saw Iceland's return to the competition. In their opening match on 3 August, Greenland were narrowly defeated 1–0 by Iceland in Fuglafjørður. Two days later, they were once again defeated 1–0 by the Faroe Islands in Klaksvík, and finished third in the tournament as in 1980. Shortly after the tournament, they played a friendly match against the Faroese on 7 August in Tórshavn, they lost 4–2.
Greenland is a member of the International Island Games Association and has taken part in Football at the Island Games. Since 13 October 2005, it is a provisional member of the N.F.-Board and since 25 March 2006 it is full-member. On 17 October 2009, the team was accepted as a provisional member of the IFU. Greenland also played Tibet, another non-FIFA team, in 2001 at Copenhagen's Vanlose Arena. However, the team was composed of players who were of Tibetan heritage and not from Tibet themselves. The match drew international attention when China threatened to embargo Greenland's shrimp exports because of Tibet's contested sovereignty. Greenland won the match 4–1.
Greenland have an annual tournament called the Greenlandic Football Championship. The national team players compete in this tournament.
Champion Runners-up 3rd Place
- **Red border color indicates the tournament was held at home.
FIFI Wild Cup participation
Greenland participated in the 2006 FIFI Wild Cup. The team played two games and lost both, the first 0–1 against the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and the second 2–4 against Zanzibar. They were eliminated in the First Round.
ELF Cup participation
Future international participation
Greenland has been seeking to participate in confederated football since at least 1998 when then national team manager Sepp Piontek stated that he had already asked UEFA to look into the possibility of Greenland becoming a member of the organization. About the issue, former DBU president Allan Hansen stated, "Concerning the GBU, I’m not convinced [they] officially applied for FIFA and UEFA membership at around the same time as Gibraltar. As I’m informed, the GBU in the late nineties sent a letter [requesting clarification on a number of issues] but..there were no follow-up actions." Additionally, he stated, "I can’t foretell what will happen in the future, but I have attended a meeting with UEFA, DBU and GBU and I'm convinced that the day DBU and GBU present a partnership agreement and a road-map for the development of Greenlandic football, UEFA will be ready to discuss options for supporting the development of Greenlandic football as well as football on an administrative level." However, another report from 2010 states that an application was submitted but other factors such as the admittance of former Soviet and Yugoslav nations made for bad timing of the application.
FIFA's approval of FieldTurf may allow Greenland to create FIFA-standard playing pitches and apply to play full internationals. They would join either UEFA (due to links with Denmark) or CONCACAF (geographically, Greenland is part of North America). The first artificial turf in Greenland was completed and inaugurated in Qaqortoq in September 2009. On 13 September 2010, FIFA president Sepp Blatter arrived in Qaqortoq and announced FIFA's approval of the new field, which is seen as a major step towards the country being granted FIFA membership.
In 2011, Allan Hansen, chairman of the Danish Football Association stated that he did not believe that Greenland had the opportunity to become a member of FIFA or a confederation immediately. However, in December 2014 the DBU and Greenland's GBU formed a partnership with the aim of having Greenland included as a UEFA and FIFA member by 2020. One of the greatest barriers to admittance at that time was FIFA's strict regulations on stadiums and playing surfaces. The DBU's support of a Greenlandic application to FIFA included financial support which would be used to replace the clay courts of at least one field in each of the country's four municipalities, with artificial turf. Additionally, it was announced in May 2015 the national government had allocated one million dollars to design a plan for the construction of a new covered national stadium in Nuuk. The intentions of the plan were to design a covered and heated facility that would have a capacity of several thousand spectators, with the plan to be presented to the Parliament of Greenland later in the autumn session of 2016. Although unrelated to the stadium proposal, the first artificial pitch was laid in Nuuk, the country's capital, in June 2015 and at the national stadium in July 2016.
Before becoming a member of FIFA, Greenland would be required to be a member of a continental confederation. However, UEFA now requires new members to be recognized by the United Nations as fully independent. Another possibility would be for Greenland to join CONCACAF as it is geographically closer to North America and the confederation allows dependent territories to join as new members.
It was believed that UEFA would vote to change its membership requirements at the 41st Annual Congress held in Helsinki, Finland so that they were more in line with those of FIFA which allows non-independent states under certain conditions. At that time DBU chair Allan Hansen said, "Greenland is in a pre-membership stage right now. I'm a lot more optimistic than I was five years ago." At that time, GBU chair John Thorsen expected that if UEFA changes its membership requirement, Greenland could have an application together by 2020. However, after the UEFA Congress, no mention of a rule change was made.
New National Stadium
|No.||Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Club|
|1||GK||Lars Pavia Fritsen|
|12||GK||Loke Svane||3 November 1982||B-67|
|13||DF||Aputsiaq Evald Birch||4 June 1985||B-67|
|3||DF||Niels Svane||FC Malamuk|
|4||DF||Nukannguaq Zeeb (Captain)||9 July 1982||G-44 Qeqertarsuaq|
|5||DF||Lars Peter Broberg||G-44 Qeqertarsuaq|
|15||DF||Steffen Boller||Inuit Timersoqatigiiffiat-79|
|14||DF||Kaali Lund Mathæussen||1 January 1988||Nagdlunguaq-48|
|6||MF||Anders H. Petersen||6 March 1981||B-67|
|18||MF||Norsaq Lund Mathæussen||B-67|
|17||MF||Nikki Petersen||6 February 1992||B-67|
|21||MF||Patrick Frederiksen||Inuit Timersoqatigiiffiat-79|
|7||FW||Malik Juhl||18 June 1989||B-67|
|11||FW||Ari Claus Jean Lehnfelt Hermann||B-67|
|9||FW||John Ludvig Broberg||19 November 1990||B-67|
| Uvdlo Jakobsen
|Isak Nielsen Kleist||1993–1995|
| Lars Olsvig
Jens Jorgen Egede
| Jens Tang Olesen
| Jens Tang Olesen
Hans Frederik Olsen
| Tonnes Berthelsen
| René Olsen
- Source: polar-bamserne.wifeo.com
German Sepp Piontek served two stints as Greenland's manager from 1999–2002 and 2004.
Dane Jens Tang Olesen (center) was Greenland's manager in 2003 and again from 2005–2010.
- Air Greenland
- Arla Foods
- H.A.P's Agentur
- Royal Arctic Line
- Association Football in Greenland
- Greenland Cup
- Greenlandic Football Championship
- Sport in Greenland
- Hansen, Nukappiaaluk. "Country coaches in football for A-national teams for men and women has taken teams to the Island Games in 2015, which takes place in Jersey" (in Danish). sermitsiaq.ag. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
- Elo rankings change compared to one year ago. "World Football Elo Ratings". eloratings.net. 10 October 2019. Retrieved 10 October 2019.
- "Football in Greenland". polar-bamserne.wifeo.com (in French). Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- Homewood, Brian. "Danish FA supports Greenland's bid to join UEFA, FIFA". U.K. Retrieved 3 August 2018.
- Knox, Tomos (22 October 2014). "The unlikely success story of football on the massive island of Greenland". theguardian.com. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
- Thomsen, Per Bech (30 April 2001). "Defiant Greenland will play Tibet". espnfc.com. ESPN Soccernet. Retrieved 11 July 2016.
- Burton, Mark. "Football: Greenland presses for recognition". Independent. Retrieved 11 July 2016.
- "THE ROAD AHEAD FOR FOOTBALL IN GREENLAND - A VIEW FROM WITHIN UEFA". patmcguinness.blogspot.com. Retrieved 11 July 2016.
- "Grønlands dyre stadionprojekt er genvej til Fifa-familien". Politiken.dk. Retrieved 13 July 2016.
- Haydon, John (14 September 2010). "FIFA gives blessing to Greenland's new soccer venue". The Washington Times. Archived from the original on 22 July 2014. Retrieved 3 October 2015.
- Krarup, Poul. "Nyt parløb skal bringe Grønland ind i Uefa-familien" (in Danish). sermitsiaq.ag. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
- "Første skridt mod et nationalt stadion i Nuuk" (in Danish). sermitsiaq.ag. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
- "Første kunstgræsbane i Nuuk klar til indvielse" (in Danish). sermitsiaq.ag. Retrieved 30 June 2015.
- "Kunstgræsbanen klar til indvielse" (in Danish). Sermitsiaq. Retrieved 10 July 2016.
- Homewood, Brian. "Danish FA supports Greenland's bid to join UEFA, FIFA". Reuters. Retrieved 10 July 2016.
- McGwin, Kevin. "Greenland could soon be a step closer to joining the world of international soccer". Arctic Now. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
- "UEFA Congress approves Good Governance reforms". UEFA. Retrieved 11 July 2017.
- "Greenland 2017 Island Games Team Roster". Retrieved 14 July 2018.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Greenland national association football team.|
- Official site of The Football Association of Greenland (Kalaallit Nunaanni Isikkamik Arsaattartut Kattuffiat)
- GBU official list of matches
- Official site of the Football Association of Nuuk
- Greenlandic Football
- Greenland on www.rsssf.com (List of International Matches)