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WC Qualification Europe

  • 11 September 2012
  • • 19:30
  • • Stadion Karađorđe, Novi Sad
  • Referee: Duarte Nuno Pereira Gomes
  • • Attendance: 10660

Serbia - Wales Preview: Search for first goal under Chris Coleman continues

Serbia - Wales Preview: Search for first goal under Chris Coleman continues

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Having lost 2-0 to Belgium in their opening World Cup qualifier, The Dragons travel to Novi Sad to take on a Serbian side that drew 0-0 with Scotland at Hampden Park last time out



Ivanovic, Bisevac, Nastasic, Kolarov
Tosic, Mijailovic, Ignjovski, Ninkovic
Djuricic, Lazovic


Gunter, Matthews, Williams, Blake
Edwards, Allen, Church, Ramsey, Bale

Serbia are likely to stick with the same team that drew 0-0 with Scotland at Hampden Park. Their defence will be reliant on Premier League stars Branislav Ivanovic and Aleksandr Kolarov, who both looked solid against the Scots.

Going forward, former Manchester United midfielder Zoran Tosic could be key for the Serbs, as the most capped midfielder in their squad.

For the Welsh, James Collins will be suspended after his red card against Belgium.

Having missed the 2-0 defeat to the Belgians with a virus, Joe Allen should make his return against the Serbs, with Ashley Williams returning to his favoured position in central defence.

Otherwise, Wales may not make many other changes, as they continue to look for a first goal under manager Chris Coleman.

  • Wales have lost three consecutive games by a score of 2-0, with those defeats coming against Belgium in their first World Cup qualifier, and in friendlies against Bosnia-Herzegovina and Mexico.
  • Central defender Sam Ricketts (pictured, right) of Bolton and Wales was once a keen horseman, and his father was the world show jumping champion of 1978, Derek Ricketts.
  • Welsh midfielder David Vaughan played for manager Chris Coleman when he was in charge of Real Sociedad in Spain, but made only nine appearances in the Spanish second tier before joining Blackpool in August 2008.
  • In nine senior internationals between these two sides, Serbia are undefeated, having taken six wins and three draws against the Welsh, scoring 22 goals in the process.
  • This game will be Serbia's third straight game against one of the so-called 'Home Nations', having faced Scotland in their first World Cup qualifier, and the Republic of Ireland before that in a friendly.
  • Serbian goalkeeper Vladimir Stojkovic spent time on loan with Wigan Athletic in 2010 as cover for Richard Kingson while he was at the Africa Cup of Nations. Stojkovic made four appearances for the Latics, and became the fourth Serbian goalkeeper to play in English football.
  • Serbia have qualified for the last two World Cup finals, but have been unable to progress from the group stage, with the 2010 tournament being their first since Montenegro declared independence.

Players to watch

B. Ivanović

Position: Defender

Games: 6

  • 1
  • 0
  • 0
The Serbian captain was involved in some controversy as he criticised Scotland’s style of play before their qualifier, and his country will need all his experience as he marshals a defence that mixes younger and older players. The Chelsea man will be crucial in stopping Wales' attacks down the left, and could be a key outlet at set pieces.

G. Bale

Position: Attacker

Games: 5

  • 4
  • 2
  • 0
If the Spurs winger has a good game for Wales on the left of midfield, the away side will be hopeful of gaining a positive result. Bale's reputation has been on the rise for the last few seasons, and he will want to bring his Tottenham form onto the international stage.

Editor's Prediction

Wales' inability to find the net may come back to haunt them in this World Cup qualifying group, and they face a difficult test away from home.

Serbia will be hopeful of earning their first win on home soil, and with numerous players with top-flight experience at club level, should have enough to take a comfortable win.

Last Five Matches

Head To Head




Betting & Predictions

Reader's Predictions

Serbia SER
Serbia Serbia
Wales WAL
Wales Wales

Top 3 Predictions

Serbia SER
1 - 0
Wales WAL
Serbia SER
2 - 0
Wales WAL
Serbia SER
1 - 2
Wales WAL