Thursday, March 24, 2011

24 March 2007 - The Newest Kids On The International Block

On 24 March 2007, Montenegro played their first-ever match, winning 2-1 against Hungary in a friendly.

Despite their recent vintage, international football in Montenegro dates back to 1919 when the area was part of Yugoslavia. In 1991, after the dissolution of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Montenegro joined with fellow ex-SFR state Serbia as the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Then, in 2003, they changed the name of the country to Serbia and Montenegro.

A further shift followed in 2006 when Montenegro claimed independence from Serbia. The administration and history of the formerly combined national team remained with Serbia, who also inherited the membership in FIFA and UEFA. As a result, Montenegro started a brand new football association and national team.

The new Montenegrin national team officially joined UEFA in January 2007 and FIFA later that year. The match against Hungary was their first official match. Played before a crowd of approximately 12,000 at the Stadion Pod Goricum, Montenegro's national stadium, the visitors took a lead in the first minute, but striker Mirko Vučinić pulled the hosts level with a 63rd-minute penalty kick. Midfielder Igor Burzanović then scored the match winner from the spot in the 81st minute.

Montenegro has risen to 25th in the recent FIFA world rankings and currently top their group for Euro 2012 qualification, over England, Bulgaria, Switzerland, and Wales.

No comments:

Post a Comment