Slovakia national football team
|Association||Slovenský futbalový zväz (SFZ)|
|Head coach||Ján Kozák|
|Most caps||Miroslav Karhan (107)|
|Top scorer||Róbert Vittek (23)|
|Home stadium||Štadión pod Dubňom|
|FIFA ranking||14 1 (6 August 2015)|
|Highest FIFA ranking||14 (August 2015)|
|Lowest FIFA ranking||150 (December 1993)|
|Elo ranking||26 (6 July 2015)|
|Highest Elo ranking||25 (June 2015)|
|Lowest Elo ranking||71 (October 2011)|
| Slovakia 2–0 Germany
(Bratislava, Slovakia; 27 August 1939)
Second Slovak Republic:
United Arab Emirates 0–1 Slovakia
(Dubai, UAE; 2 February 1994)
| Slovakia 7–0 Liechtenstein
(Bratislava, Slovakia; 8 September 2004)
Slovakia 7–0 San Marino
(Dubnica nad Váhom, Slovakia; 13 October 2007)
Slovakia 7–0 San Marino
(Bratislava, Slovakia; 6 June 2009)
| Argentina 6–0 Slovakia
(Mendoza, Argentina; 22 June 1995)
|Appearances||1 (First in 2010)|
|Best result||Round of 16, 2010|
The Slovakia national football team (Slovak: Slovenské národné futbalové mužstvo) represents Slovakia in association football and is controlled by the Slovak Football Association (SFZ), the governing body for football in Slovakia. Slovakia's home stadium is Štadión Pasienky and their head coach is Ján Kozák. Slovakia are one of the newest national football teams in the world, having split from the Czechoslovakia national football team after the dissolution of the unified state in 1993, with the Czech Republic national football team continuing as the successor of the Czechoslovak team. Slovakia maintains its own national side that competes in all major professional tournaments.
Slovakia qualified for the FIFA World Cup in 2010 after winning their qualifying group despite two defeats against Slovenia, and progressed beyond the group stage after a 3–2 win against Italy, before bowing out of the tournament after a 2–1 defeat in the second round against eventual runners-up the Netherlands. It was the first time the team have ever played in a major football competition, after playing every FIFA World Cup qualifying campaign since 1998 and every UEFA European Football Championship qualifying campaign since 1996, after a 50-year absence from international football due to representing part of the Czechoslovakia team. They did come close to securing a berth at the 2006 finals in Germany, after finishing second in their group ahead of Russia and behind Portugal, before drawing Spain in their qualification play-off, in which the Slovaks lost by a wide margin on aggregate. The team have achieved some noteworthy results, however, such as the aforementioned win over the then title holders Italy at the 2010 FIFA World Cup and a 1–0 win against Russia in September 2010 which helped the team reach their best ever position of 16th in the FIFA World Rankings. Despite this success however, the team later dropped down the rankings and a considerable drop in form went with this, as the team failed to qualify for Euro 2012 finishing in their group in 4th place. They also only scored seven goals in the group, only more than minnows Andorra.
Slovakia's traditional rival is the Czech Republic which they played twice in the qualification for the 1998 FIFA World Cup in 1996 and 1997 winning 2–1 in Bratislava, before losing 3–0 in Prague with both teams already eliminated, before playing each other again in 2008 and 2009 in the qualifying round for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. In these two meetings the teams drew 2–2 in Bratislava with the Slovaks winning 2–1 in Prague. But before that, they also playing each other in UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying, and they lost 3–1 in Prague and 0–3 in Bratislava.
- 1 History
- 2 Stadium
- 3 Nickname
- 4 Kit
- 5 Tournament records
- 6 Results and schedule
- 7 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying
- 8 2016 UEFA Euro qualifying
- 9 All-time team record
- 10 Players
- 11 Player statistics
- 12 Managers
- 13 See also
- 14 References
- 15 External links
The first official match of the first Slovak Republic (1939–1945) was played in Bratislava against Germany on 27 August 1939, and ended in a 2–0 victory for Slovakia. After the Second World War, the national football team was subsumed into the team of Czechoslovakia, and for over fifty years Slovakia played no matches as an independent country. During this period they contributed several key players to the Czechoslovak team, including the majority of the team that won the 1976 European Championships (eight of the eleven players who defeated West Germany in the final were Slovak).
Slovakia's first official international after regaining independence was a 1–0 victory in Dubai over the United Arab Emirates on 2 February 1994. Their match back on Slovak soil was the 4–1 defeat against Croatia in Bratislava on 20 April 1994. Slovakia suffered their biggest defeat since independence (6–0) on 22 June 1995, in Mendoza, against Argentina. Their biggest wins (7–0) have come against Liechtenstein in 2004 and San Marino (twice) in 2007.
Slovakia played in a major championship as an independent team for the first time in Euro '96 qualifying, but finished in third place in their qualifying group, behind Romania and France, having recorded wins against Poland, Israel and Azerbaijan, twice. In the 1998 World Cup qualifiers, Slovakia finished fourth in their six-team group with five wins, one draw and four defeats. Their first four games in this were all wins, with one of these against their Czech neighbors, helping the team reach their highest FIFA World Ranking to date of No. 17.
Slovakia participated in the FIFA World Cup for the first time in their history as an independent nation after finishing in first place in 2010 FIFA World Cup qualification – UEFA Group 3 ahead of Slovenia, Czech Republic, Northern Ireland, and Poland. On 14 October 2009, they clinched qualification with a 1–0 away win against Poland. On 24 June 2010, Slovakia finished second in the group stage after defeating World Cup titleholders Italy in a game which ESPN called "epic". The game saw three goals being scored after the 80th minute, two by Italy and one by Slovakia, as well as, a disallowed goal by Italy flagged offside by "the tightest of decisions". The result led Slovakia to the knockout stage and eliminated Italy, which finished last in the group. The result of this match meant that for the first time in World Cup history both finalists from the previous tournament have been eliminated from the first round, champion Italy and runner-up France. From here the Slovaks played the Netherlands in the round of 16, Slovakia were complete underdogs going into the game, but for most of the match until conceding their first goal were creating chances. From here Slovakia lost belief they could go back into the match and then fell 2–0 behind only to score a late goal from the penalty spot which turned out to be the last kick of the game. This returned Róbert Vittek to the top of the goalscoring charts joint top with David Villa until Villa himself scored against Portugal in a 1–0 win.
For UEFA Euro 2012 qualification, Slovakia was drawn against Russia, Ireland, Armenia, Macedonia and Andorra. The good campaign in South Africa boosted team performance ahead of the qualifiers, which started in September with two 1–0 wins against Macedonia in Stadion Pasienky and Russia away, this one in particular giving Slovakia the perfect start. However, October came and team form slipped steadily, as Repre was easily beaten in Armenia (3–1) and couldn't do better than a 1–1 home draw against Ireland. At that point, Russia topped the group charts with 9 points, with Slovakia, Armenia and Ireland all in 2-point-gap of the leaders.
However, 2011 got terribly worse. In February, the team was stunned in a 2–1 friendly defeat against Luxembourg, before needing to fight hard for two 1–0 wins against group minnows Andorra, who had conceded 11 goals in the previous four matches. Playing in Ireland in a six-point match, Slovakia got a goalless draw, despite having better chances, which kept both teams two points behind Russia, and leading Armenia by three. Four days later, even though, Slovakia had its most disastrous performance in years, as, after creating chances in a goalless first half, went on to concede four goals to an effective and brave Armenian team, what definitely ended team confidence in the tournament spot. In the final two matches, Slovakia was beaten at home by Russia, 1–0, despite playing much better than against Armenia, and drew in Macedonia 1–1, to a mediocre fourth place, and scoring only seven goals in the whole process. For the first time since UEFA Euro 1996, Slovakia finished a qualifying campaign with a negative goal difference. Vladimír Weiss left his job after four full years, being replaced by his assistants Michal Hipp and Stanislav Griga. Both were later replaced due to poor results. By late June, former Czechoslovakia national football team footballer Ján Kozák became the head coach. Matters did not improve with a dreadful 0–0 draw against UEFA newcomers (and its lowest ranked team) Gibraltar in November 2013.
For UEFA Euro 2016 qualification, Slovakia was drawn against Spain, Ukraine, Belarus, Macedonia and Luxembourg. Slovakia began the qualifying campaign with a 1–0 victory against Ukraine in Kiev. On 9 October 2014, Slovakia beat Spain 2–1 in a shock victory and claimed the first place. Slovakia's 3–1 victory over Belarus confirmed their status as group leaders. Later on, they won 2-0 against Macedonia in the Philip II Arena, Luxembourg with a score of 3-0 in Žilina, and Macedonia again with a score of 2-1 on June 14, 2015, also in Žilina. As of now, Slovakia is undefeated with 6 wins and remain as group leaders in Group C in this qualifying campaign.
The Slovakia national football team is using three stadiums on the present: Štadión pod Dubňom in Žilina, Štadión Pasienky in Bratislava and Štadión Antona Malatinského in Trnava. The national team recently played, last in 2009, at the biggest Slovak stadium Tehelné pole in Bratislava but the stadium does not meet UEFA criteria for international games today. In the past, home games have occasionally been played at other venues as Všešportový areál and Lokomotíva Stadium in Košice, Štadión pod Zoborom in Nitra, Mestský štadión in Dubnica or Tatran Stadion in Prešov.
Stadiums which have hosted Slovakia international football matches:
|Stadium||First international||Last international|
|44||Tehelné pole, Bratislava||20 April 1994||14 November 2009|
|18||Štadión pod Dubňom, Žilina||30 April 2003||14 June 2015|
|10||Štadión Antona Malatinského, Trnava||24 April 1996||29 March 2011|
|9||Pasienky, Bratislava||18 August 1999||16 October 2012|
|4||Všešportový areál, Košice||8 March 1995||15 November 1995|
|2||Štadión pod Zoborom, Nitra||27 March 1996||24 May 2000|
|2||Lokomotíva Stadium, Košice||19 August 1998||5 September 1998|
|2||Mestský štadión, Dubnica||8 September 1999||13 October 2007|
|1||Štadión na Sihoti, Trenčín||5 September 2001||5 September 2001|
|1||Štadión 1. FC Tatran Prešov, Prešov||14 May 2002||14 May 2002|
|1||Štadión FC ViOn, Zlaté Moravce||26 March 2008||26 March 2008|
|1||NTC Senec, Senec||23 May 2014||23 May 2014|
In Slovakia, the team is typically referred to as the Repre (Representation) or Národný tím (National team).
Slovakia's home kit since the 1993 was blue, but currently Slovakia changed their home kit from blue to white. The team wears either a set of white jerseys, shorts and socks or a set of blue jerseys, shorts and socks. A combination of a blue jersey and white shorts has also been used in some matches. The official shirt supplier is Puma which has signed a long-term agreement with the Slovak Association until 2016.
|Le Coq Sportif||1993–1995|
|Puma||2012 – at least 2016|
World Cup record
|FIFA World Cup record||FIFA World Cup Qualification record|
|1930–1994||Part of Czechoslovakia|
|1998||Did not qualify||4th||10||5||1||4||18||14|
|2010||Round of 16||16||4||1||1||2||5||7||1st||10||7||1||2||22||10|
|2014||Did not qualify||3rd||10||3||4||3||11||10|
|Total||Round of 16||1/5||4||1||1||2||5||7||54||26||14||14||93||57|
|List of FIFA World Cup matches|
|2010||Round 1||New Zealand 1 – 1 Slovakia||Draw||Vittek|
|Round 1||Slovakia 0 – 2 Paraguay||Loss|
|Round 1||Slovakia 3 – 2 Italy||Win||Vittek (2), Kopúnek|
|Round of 16||Netherlands 2 – 1 Slovakia||Loss||Vittek|
European Championship record
|UEFA Euro record||UEFA Euro Qualification record|
|1960–1992||Part of Czechoslovakia|
|1996||Did not qualify||3rd||10||4||2||4||14||18|
|2016||To be decided||In progress|
|Host nation(s) / Year||Result||GP||W||D*||L||GS||GA|
|1996||Did not qualify|
|2004||Did not qualify|
Results and schedule
The box below, show the results of all A-level matches played within the last 12 months, and the scheduled matches for the nearest future.
* Slovakia score always listed first
2014 FIFA World Cup qualifying
2016 UEFA Euro qualifying
|1||Slovakia (X)||6||6||0||0||13||3||+10||18||Advance to final tournament||—||2–1||8 Sep||9 Oct||2–1||3–0|
|2||Spain||6||5||0||1||15||3||+12||15||5 Sep||—||1–0||3–0||5–1||9 Oct|
|3||Ukraine||6||4||0||2||9||2||+7||12||Final tournament or play-offs||0–1||12 Oct||—||5 Sep||1–0||3–0|
|4||Belarus||6||1||1||4||4||11||−7||4||1–3||0–1||0–2||—||12 Oct||8 Sep|
|5||Macedonia||6||1||0||5||6||14||−8||3||0–2||8 Sep||9 Oct||1–2||—||3–2|
|6||Luxembourg (Y)||6||0||1||5||3||17||−14||1||12 Oct||0–4||0–3||1–1||5 Sep||—|
Rules for classification: Qualification tiebreakers
(X) Assured of at least third place (and play-offs), but may still qualify directly as one of the top two teams or as the best third-placed team; (Y) Cannot qualify directly as one of the top two teams, but may still qualify as third-placed team.
All-time team record
The following table shows Slovakia's all-time international record, correct as of 15 June 2015.
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||4||1||0||3||4||6||−2|
|Republic of Ireland||4||0||3||1||3||4||−1|
|Serbia and Montenegro||1||0||0||1||0||2||−2|
|United Arab Emirates||2||2||0||0||3||1||+2|
The following players have also been called up to the Slovakia squad within the last twelve months.
- INJ Withdrew due to an injury.
- PRE Preliminary squad.
- RET Retired from international football.
Players in bold are still active.
- As of 14 June 2015.
Most capped players