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Serbia vs England preview, H2H, team news, line-ups and prediction

England will kick off their Euro 2024 campaign against Serbia on Sunday, June 16, at the VELTINS-Arena. Here is a preview for the game.


England will kick off their Euro 2024 campaign against Serbia on Sunday, June 16, at the VELTINS-Arena, Gelsenkirchen, as they look to clinch their first-ever European Championship title.

The Three Lions are drawn in Group C alongside Serbia, Denmark and Slovenia. They are expected to continue their qualifying campaign form by finishing at the top of the group and getting to the final of the tournament which of course is the ultimate aim.

England will have fond memories of the match venue for their group opener. The last time they played in this venue was in the penalty shootout loss to Portugal in the 2006 World Cup. They will hope there are no repetitive antecedents in the game, especially the part where their player could potentially be sent off as reminiscent of Wayne Rooney’s marching orders the last time England played in the venue.

Despite finishing top of their qualifying group, Gareth Southgate’s side have not entirely been vintage in their preparation games and are winless in their last three matches, including the most recent 1:0 loss to Iceland.

Serbia on the other has not been devoid of their struggles, having gone three matches without a win. Although they carry the underdog tag, they still possess a star-studded team including Dusan Tadic, Dusan Vlahovic, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic etc.

Dragan Stojković’s side finished as runners-up from Group G in the qualifying stages ahead of Montenegro and Hungary, to seal qualification for the Euros. While their performances may not be the most unique, they also have a stockpile of players who could inflict damages on the opposition, and England cannot afford to falter against a combative Beli Orlovi side.

England has not just one of the best teams in the tournament, but they have the best players in the world in respective positions. Team captain and centre forward, Harry Kane finished his debut season in Germany as the Bundesliga top scorer with 36 goals and is on course to win the European Golden Shoe.

Jude Bellingham put up a performance of ages in his first season at Real Madrid, providing 36 goals contributions and winning the UEFA Champions League Young Player of the Season.

Phil Foden, Cole Palmer and Kobbie Mainoo are other outstanding stars who made undeniable marks in the League last season and they’ll all be in the parade for the Three Lions against Serbia.

Serbia also parades some of the best forwards in the tournament, with Saudi Pro League second highest-scorer, Aleksandar Mitrovic, and Juventus’ top scorer Vlahovic will be spearheading the Beli OrlovI frontline when they face England on Sunday.

This will be Serbia’s first participation in the tournament as an independent nation, having participated in the previous five editions as Yugoslavia.

Their previous outings in major competitions have not been impressive – crashing out of the group stages in their last three World Cup campaigns.

Their qualifying campaign gives the biggest clue that they will not be shy of scoring goals, after scoring 15 goals across 8 matches in Group G.

They will hope to make a bold impression this time and playing under the tutelage of Serbian football icon, Dragan Stojkovic should give them the morale to put off an outstanding performance on Sunday.

Serbia vs England match details

  • Date: Sunday, 16 June, 2024
  • Location: Gelsenkirchen, Germany
  • Venue: VELTINS-Arena
  • Kick-off time: 08:00 PM BST, 07:00 UTC, 9:00 PM CEST, 1:00 AM AEST, 12:30 am IST
  • Tickets: Fans can buy Serbia vs England tickets via official UEFA channels or through secondary marketplaces like

Match stats and head-to-head

• Serbia have one of the most experienced players in this tournament with over eight players making at least 40 international caps for the country.

• England have lost just one of their last 18 matches in regulation time at the European Championships, winning ten and drawing seven. The last time the Three Lions lost a game in regulation time was in 2016 in the shocking 2-1 defeat to Iceland in the round of 16.

• England captain, Kane, has been involved in at least one goal in his last 16 starts in qualification matches, scoring 20 goals and providing eight assists. Only France’s Kylian Mbappé has matched Kane’s 12 goals in the last three international tournaments.

• This will be the very first official match between Serbia and England

• The Three Lions will be participating in the European Championships for the 11th time. They’re the only side to play at least 38 games in the tournament without being crowned winners.

• Serbia scored 15 goals in their qualifying campaign and were the only side in Group G to score in all eight matches.

• The Beli Orlovi have scored in all their last 22 qualifying matches (excluding play-offs). The last time they failed to find the back of the net was in the 5-0 loss to Ukraine in June 2019.

• Dragan Stojković’s side seems to defy the forces of gravity with five of their last 15 matches being headers scored on air. Data from Opta reveals that it’s 33% of the highest ratio of teams that qualified for the European Championships in Germany.

Team news

Gareth Southgate made some daring decisions in his 26-man squad list, dropping some famous names like Jack Grealish and James Maddison while also including promising youngsters like Kobbie Mainoo and Adam Wharton.

The youngsters will be hoping to relieve the pressure and play prominent roles as England aim for their first-ever European title.

The Three Lions will be without Luke Shaw who recently criticised Manchester United’s physios for playing a role in his incessant injuries. The 26-year-old is in a race against time to be fit for the game and all indications are pointing that the left-back will unlikely feature in England’s opening game.

England suffered a scare when John Stones had discomforts in the 1:0 loss to Iceland but is tipped to be fine for the game on Sunday.

Dragan Stojković has a fully fit squad at his disposal and is spoilt for choice in the attacking third. The 59-year-old will have the option of using Mitrovic or Vlahovic to lead his line, or better still, use both players against England’s unimpressive defence.

Predicted starting lineup

Serbia predicted starting lineup:

V. Milonkovic-Savic; Milenkovic, Pavlovic, Veljkovic; Zivkovic, Lukic, Gudelj, Kostic; S. Mikinkovic-Savic, Tadic; Mitrovic.

England predicted starting lineup:

Pickford; Walker, Stones, Guehi, Trippier; Rice, Gallagher, Bellingham; Palmer, Saka; Kane.


There’s no doubt every focus will be on England heading to this game and there could be more news headlines if they fail to get a win here.

Southgate can’t play down the pressure on his team and must do everything to secure an all-important first win of the tournament.

Serbia on the other hand are no pushovers, with an attacking force that is aerially dominant and little complacency at the back could see either Mitrovic, Tadic or Vlahovic nick in one at the back of the net.

Both teams have questionable defences and England particularly still has a big question mark on who will pair with John Stones at centre-back on Sunday.

The Three Lions still have more qualities in midfield and attack and are tipped to dominate this game.

With both teams having a not-too-strong defence, the team with a better clinical edge upfront should emerge winner in this match.

We’re predicting a 2:1 win for England.

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