San Marino national football team
The San Marino national football team (Italian: Nazionale di calcio di San Marino) represents San Marino in men's international football competitions and it is controlled by the San Marino Football Federation (FSGC). The team represents the smallest population of any UEFA member.
|Association||Federazione Sammarinese Giuoco Calcio|
|Head coach||Franco Varrella|
|Most caps||Andy Selva (73)|
|Top scorer||Andy Selva (8)|
|Home stadium||San Marino Stadium|
|Current||210 (21 October 2021)|
|Highest||118 (September 1993)|
|Lowest||211 (November 2018 – July 2019)|
| San Marino 1–0 Liechtenstein |
(Serravalle, San Marino; 28 April 2004)
| San Marino 0–13 Germany |
(Serravalle, San Marino; 6 September 2006)
The first official game played by a San Marino team was a 4–0 defeat in a European Championships qualifier by Switzerland in 1990. Previously, a San Marino side played an unofficial match against a Canadian Olympic team in 1986, losing 1–0. Since making their competitive debut, San Marino have competed in the qualifiers of every European Championship and World Cup, but have never won a match in either competition. They have only ever won one game, beating Liechtenstein 1–0 in a friendly match on 28 April 2004.
Until November 2014, San Marino were tied in last place in the FIFA World Rankings, a run that lasted since the rankings were given a new calculation methodology. They were tied for last with Bhutan (208th) in the October 2014 rankings, but a 0–0 draw with Estonia during the Euro 2016 qualifying rounds ended their tenure at the bottom of the rankings. The national side scored their first away goal in fourteen years against another Baltic side, Lithuania, during the same qualifying rounds. When the ranking methodology got revised again, the team fell back to the bottom, following a 1–0 loss to Moldova in the Nations League.
San Marino's national team is sometimes considered the worst national side in the history of the sport, as they have only ever won a single match and concede an average of 4.2 goals per game, although as a member of UEFA they face stronger competition than many other low-ranked sides.
Though the San Marino Football Federation formed in 1931, the federation did not establish a national team until 1986, when a team representing the Federation played Canada's Olympic team in an unofficial international. San Marino gained affiliation to governing bodies FIFA and UEFA in 1988, allowing the team to participate in major championships. Prior to this, Sammarinese players had been considered Italian in international football contexts.
San Marino's first match in a FIFA sanctioned competition was against Switzerland on 14 November 1990 in a qualifier for the 1992 European Championships. San Marino lost 4–0, and would go on to lose all eight of their tournament qualifiers. The team particularly struggled in away matches, losing every one by at least four goals. San Marino scored only one goal, which was a penalty in a 3–1 defeat at home by Romania, and conceded 33 goals in total.
For their first World Cup qualifying campaign, San Marino were drawn in a group with England, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland and Turkey. The opening match resulted in a 10–0 hammering at the hands of Norway. The return match was less one-sided, finishing 2–0 to the Norwegians. A 4–1 defeat in Turkey saw San Marino score their first World Cup goal, and a 0–0 draw against the same opposition on 10 March 1993 gave them their first ever point. In their final qualifier, against England, Davide Gualtieri scored the then-fastest goal in World Cup Qualifying history—after 8.3 seconds—though the team went on to lose 7–1. San Marino finished the campaign with one point, and conceded 46 goals in 10 matches.
The team's qualification campaign for Euro 1996 followed a similar pattern to that of the previous European championships, as they lost every game. A match away to Finland gave San Marino their first goal away from home in the European championships, but the team lost 4–1. Their only other goal came in a 3–1 home defeat by the Faroe Islands; the two wins over San Marino were the only points gained by the Faroe Islands in the group. In the first match, a 3–0 scoreline in Toftir, is the Faroe Islands record competitive win.
Even by Sammarinese standards, qualification for the 1998 World Cup was disappointing. Losing every game by three goals or more, San Marino failed to score a single goal. This is the only World Cup qualifying tournament in which they have failed to score. Qualification for Euro 2000 again resulted in defeats in every game. The closest game was against Cyprus, a 1–0 defeat on 18 November 1998.
In April 2001, San Marino gained their first ever away point, drawing 1–1 with Latvia in Riga. The team ended the 2002 World Cup qualifying group with a new best of three goals, though one of these came in a 10–1 defeat by Belgium. In Euro 2004 qualifying San Marino lost all eight matches, failing to score. The closest result was a 1–0 home defeat by Latvia, with the winner scored in the last minute.
In April 2004, San Marino gained their first win after more than 70 attempts, a 1–0 victory over Liechtenstein in a friendly on 28 April 2004 courtesy of a fifth-minute goal by Andy Selva. The match was Martin Andermatt's debut as Liechtenstein manager. Results during qualification for the 2006 World Cup followed a similar vein to previous qualifying groups. Matches were generally one-sided defeats, with the exception of single goal defeats at home by Lithuania and Belgium.
San Marino's opening Euro 2008 qualifying match resulted in a record 13–0 defeat at home by Germany on 6 September 2006. They scored only twice and conceded fifty-seven goals in losing all twelve matches, although the home matches against Ireland, Cyprus and Wales were each lost by a single goal.
In the qualification campaign for the 2010 World Cup, they lost all ten matches played and failed to qualify. They conceded 47 goals in those fixtures, including 10 in a defeat by Poland, which became Poland's highest scoring victory of all time, and scored just once, in a 3–1 defeat by Slovakia. The Qualifiers for UEFA Euro 2012 started in a similar way, the first nine matches all being defeats with an aggregate of 49 goals conceded and none scored, their best result being a one-goal loss to Finland at home, with the worst being a heavy 11–0 loss to the Netherlands, which became the Netherlands' highest scoring victory of all time and San Marino's worst-ever away defeat. This was then followed up by two lighter defeats, a 5–0 home loss against Sweden, before completing the campaign with a 4–0 away loss to Moldova.
On 10 September 2013, Alessandro Della Valle scored San Marino's first competitive goal in five years. With the score 0–1 to Poland in the Serravalle stadium, he headed in a free-kick in the 22nd minute, beating AFC Bournemouth goalkeeper Artur Boruc at his front post. Poland then regained the lead a minute later, eventually winning 5–1. It was the first international goal of any kind scored by San Marino since the national team lost 3–2 at home to Malta, the second time (after a 2–2 friendly draw against Liechtenstein away in 2003) the national team has scored more than once in any given international at senior level.
On 15 November 2014, San Marino drew 0–0 at home against Estonia. It was the first time in ten years that the team had not lost a game, ending a 61–match losing streak, and securing the country's first ever point in a European Championship qualifier.
On 16 November 2019, Filippo Berardi scored a goal in a 1–3 loss to Kazakhstan in a Euro 2020 qualifying match, which was the first goal for San Marino in two years (1–5 vs. Azerbaijan on 4 September 2017), and their first home goal in six years (1–5 vs. Poland on 10 September 2013).
On 13 October 2020, San Marino recorded their 4th competitive draw and their first since 2014, after their Nations League match with Liechtenstein ended 0–0. A month later they made history by holding Gibraltar to a goalless draw, surviving with 10 men after Davide Simoncini was sent off. This heralded several firsts for them: the first major tournament in which they had gained more than one point, the first time they had gained more than one point in a calendar year, and the first time they had gone unbeaten in two consecutive competitive games.
San Marino play home matches at the San Marino Stadium, a municipally owned stadium in Serravalle which also hosts the matches of club side San Marino Calcio. It has a capacity of 7,000. Crowds are low but there is always a fan group called "Brigata Mai 1 Gioia", mainly composed by Italians (in particular from the near region Emilia Romagna). On occasion travelling supporters outnumber the Sammarinese support. For example, in the fixture against the Republic of Ireland in February 2007, 2,500 of the 3,294 crowd were Irish supporters.
San Marino have played three "home" matches outside their borders. For World Cup qualifiers against England and the Netherlands in 1993 the Stadio Renato Dall'Ara in Bologna was used, and for UEFA Nations League match against Liechetenstein in 2020 at the Stadio Romeo Neri in Rimini.
San Marino once had the smallest population of any UEFA country, until the May 2013 election of Gibraltar. The republic has never won a competitive fixture. A 2004 1–0 friendly win against Liechtenstein remains their sole victory to date.
The national side is mainly composed of amateur players. Only a small number of players are professionals, with many holding second jobs outside of the sport. Their 13–0 defeat at home by Germany is a European Championship record, and they have conceded ten goals on four other separate occasions.
In 2001, Latvia manager Gary Johnson resigned after failing to beat San Marino in a World Cup qualifier. The Republic of Ireland's 2–1 win in February 2007 (due to a last-second goal) resulted in scathing press criticism.
San Marino set a European record when they went over 20 games without scoring between October 2008 and August 2012. On 8 September 2015, San Marino scored its first away goal in 14 years when Matteo Vitaioli scored against Lithuania in Euro 2016 qualification.
Results and fixturesEdit
Win Draw Lose
|11 November 2020 Friendly||San Marino||0–3||Latvia||Serravalle, San Marino|
|Report||Brolli 32' (o.g.)
Gutkovskis 78' (pen.)
|Stadium: San Marino Stadium|
Referee: Fabio Maresca (Italy)
|14 November 2020 2020–21 UEFA Nations League||San Marino||0–0||Gibraltar||Serravalle, San Marino|
|15:00 CET (UTC+01:00)||Report||Stadium: San Marino Stadium|
Referee: Kateryna Monzul (Ukraine)
|25 March 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||England||5–0||San Marino||London, England|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: Wembley Stadium|
Referee: Kirill Levnikov (Russia)
|28 March 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||San Marino||0–3||Hungary||Serravalle, San Marino|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: Stadio Olimpico de Serravalle|
Referee: Nicholas Walsh (Scotland)
|31 March 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||San Marino||0–2||Albania||Serravalle, San Marino|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: Stadio Olimpico de Serravalle|
Referee: Kai Erik Steen (Norway)
|28 May 2021 Friendly||Italy||7–0||San Marino||Cagliari, Italy|
|20:45 CEST (UTC+02:00)||Report||Stadium: Sardegna Arena|
Referee: Trustin Farrugia Cann (Malta)
|1 June 2021 Friendly||Kosovo||4–1||San Marino||Pristina, Kosovo|
|18:00||Muriqi 28', 45+1', 46', 76' (pen.)||Report||D. Tomassini 85'||Stadium: Fadil Vokrri Stadium|
Referee: Yaşar Kemal Uğurlu (Turkey)
|2 September 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||Andorra||2–0||San Marino||Andorra la Vella, Andorra|
||Report||Stadium: Estadi Nacional|
Referee: Jakob Kehlet (Denmark)
|5 September 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||San Marino||1–7||Poland||Serravalle, San Marino|
||Report||Stadium: Stadio Olimpico de Serravalle|
Referee: Mattias Gestranius (Finland)
|8 September 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||Albania||5–0||San Marino||Elbasan, Albania|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: Elbasan Arena|
Referee: Lukas Fähndrich (Switzerland)
|9 October 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||Poland||5–0||San Marino||Warsaw, Poland|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: PGE Narodowy|
Referee: Fran Jović (Croatia)
|12 October 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||San Marino||0–3||Andorra||Serravalle, San Marino|
|20:45||Report||Stadium: Stadio Olimpico de Serravalle|
Referee: Halil Umut Meler (Turkey)
|12 November 2021 2022 FIFA World Cup qualification||Hungary||v||San Marino||Budapest , Hungary|
|Stadium: Puskás Aréna|
Current technical staff:
|Head coach||Franco Varrella|
|Technical assistant||Stefano Ceci|
|Fitness coach||Tomaso Mazzoli|
|Goalkeeping coach||Marcello Teodorani|
|Team doctor||Pietro Bugli|
|Official accompanying||Cesare Vitaioli|
|Match analyst||Lorenzo Vagnini|
- As of 12 October 2021
|Giulio Casali||28 March 1986||20 September 1987||6||0||2||4|
|Giorgio Leoni||14 November 1990||15 November 1995||29||0||1||28|
|Massimo Bonini||2 June 1996||10 September 1997||8||0||0||8|
|Giampaolo Mazza||10 October 1998||15 October 2013||85||1||2||82|
|Pierangelo Manzaroli||8 June 2014||8 October 2017||28||0||1||27|
|Franco Varrella||8 September 2018||present||32||0||2||30|
Caps and goals correct as of: 12 October 2021, after the match against Andorra.
The following players have been called up within the last 12 months.
|Pos.||Player||Date of birth (age)||Caps||Goals||Club||Latest call-up|
|GK||Davide Colonna||10 November 2000||0||0||Domagnano||v. Andorra, 2 September 2021|
|GK||Alex Stimac||22 June 1996||0||0||Virtus||Training Camp, 20 August 2021|
|DF||Michele Cevoli||21 July 1999||10||0||Juvenes-Dogana||v. Albania, 8 September 2021|
|DF||Filippo Quaranta||11 September 1998||0||0||Juvenes-Dogana||v. Albania, 8 September 2021|
|DF||Luca Nanni||30 January 1995||0||0||Folgore||v. Albania, 31 March 2021|
|MF||Fabio Tomassini||5 February 1996||25||0||Pennarossa||v. Albania, 8 September 2021|
|MF||Mattia Giardi||15 December 1991||13||0||Folgore||v. Albania, 31 March 2021|
|MF||Michele Cervellini||14 April 1988||35||0||Cosmos||v. Gibraltar, 14 November 2020|
|FW||Samuel Pancotti||31 October 2000||0||0||La Fiorita||v. Poland, 9 October 2021 PRE|
|FW||Pietro Sopranzi||29 January 1998||0||0||Libertas||v. Albania, 8 September 2021|
|FW||Filippo Berardi||18 May 1997||21||1||Ancona-Matelica||v. Kosovo, 1 June 2021|
INJ Withdrew due to injury
- As of 12 October 2021
- Players in bold are still active with San Marino.
Most capped playersEdit
|5||Alessandro Della Valle||65||1||2002–2017|
|7||Aldo Junior Simoncini||61||0||2006–present|
FIFA World CupEdit
|FIFA World Cup record||Qualification record|
|1930 to 1990||Did not enter||Declined participation|
|1994||Did not qualify||10||0||1||9||2||46|
|2026||To be determined||To be determined|
UEFA European ChampionshipEdit
|UEFA European Championship record||Qualification record|
|1960 to 1988||Did not enter||Declined participation|
|1992||Did not qualify||8||0||0||8||1||33|
|2024||To be determined||To be determined|
UEFA Nations LeagueEdit
|UEFA Nations League record|
|2022–23||D||TBA||To be determined|
|Mediterranean Games record|
|1951–1983||Did not enter|
|1991–present||See San Marino national under-20 team|
San Marino's all-time recordEdit
- As of 12 October 2021
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||2||0||0||2||1||6||−5||0.00|
|Republic of Ireland||2||0||0||2||1||7||−6||0.00|
|Serbia and Montenegro||2||0||0||2||0||8||−8||0.00|
- As of 15 October 2013
List of matches not lost by San MarinoEdit
|B. Gasperoni 39'
- "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 21 October 2021. Retrieved 21 October 2021.
- Elo rankings change compared to one year ago. "World Football Elo Ratings". eloratings.net. 14 October 2021. Retrieved 14 October 2021.
- "FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. Archived from the original on 7 October 2011. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
- "9 Reasons Why San Marino Really Is the Worst Football Team of All Time". complex.com. Complex Media. 9 October 2014. Retrieved 15 October 2014.
- "Il Calcio Sammarinese Si Organizza" (in Italian). San Marino Football Federation. Archived from the original on 9 June 2007. Retrieved 9 September 2007.
- "Just rewards for modest man". UEFA. Archived from the original on 20 October 2007. Retrieved 9 September 2007.
- "Romania National Team 1990–1999". RSSSF. Retrieved 9 September 2007.
- "European Championship 1992". RSSSF. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "San Marino Hero Who Humiliated England". This Is London. Archived from the original on 12 February 2009. Retrieved 9 September 2007.
- "World Cup 1994 qualifications". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 11 May 2011. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "European Championship 1996". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 7 July 2008. Retrieved 17 October 2010.
- "Faroes prove fearsome foes". UEFA. Archived from the original on 8 July 2007. Retrieved 23 September 2007.
- "World Cup 1998 qualifications". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 26 January 2010. Retrieved 12 September 2010.
- "European Championship 2000". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 1 July 2016. Retrieved 12 September 2010.
- "Group 4: Latvia long for revenge". UEFA. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "Own goal denies San Marino". UEFA. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "Selva the saviour for San Marino". UEFA. Archived from the original on 7 January 2016. Retrieved 9 January 2011.
- "World Cup 2006 qualifications". RSSSF. Archived from the original on 3 March 2016. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "San Marino 0–13 Germany: Record breakers". ESPN. Retrieved 9 September 2007.
- "European Championship 2008". RSSSF. Retrieved 6 September 2010.
- "Big guns fire as Poland cut loose". FIFA. Archived from the original on 11 November 2012. Retrieved 9 January 2011.
- "World Cup 2010 qualifications". RSSSF. Retrieved 10 October 2010.
- "San Marino on the end of record Netherlands win". UEFA. Retrieved 7 September 2011.
- "San Marino 0–0 Estonia". BBC Sports. 15 November 2014. Retrieved 15 November 2014.
- "Norway v San Marino". BBC Sport. Retrieved 14 October 2020.
- "San Marino score their first goal for two years – and their first home goal since 2013". givemesport.com. 16 November 2019.
- "Minnows San Marino end 40-game losing streak". JOE.co.uk. Retrieved 14 October 2020.
- DigitalFC. "Stadio Olimpico, home to San Marino, SS Cosmos, SS Folgore Falciano Calcio, AC Juvenes/Dogana, San Marino Calcio, SP La Fiorita, AC Libertas – Football Ground Map". www.footballgroundmap.com. Retrieved 6 September 2018.
- "Does Size Matter?" (PDF). Football Supporters Federation. Archived from the original (PDF) on 26 June 2008. Retrieved 9 September 2007. (pdf)
- "Ireland stumble past San Marino". Irish Times. Retrieved 14 October 2007.
- "San Marino 1–2 Rep of Ireland". BBC. 7 February 2007. Retrieved 14 October 2007.
- "Gibraltar given full UEFA membership at London Congress". BBC Sport. 24 May 2013. Retrieved 24 May 2013.
- "FIFA Rankings – San Marino". FIFA. Archived from the original on 15 June 2007. Retrieved 10 October 2007.
- Various (2006). Power, Corruption and Pies Volume 2. WSC Books. p. 149. ISBN 978-0-9540134-8-6.
- "Irish media heap scorn on meagre win in San Marino". Reuters. 8 February 2007. Retrieved 22 September 2007.
- "Did You Know... San Marino Are World Record Breakers". soccerlists.wordpress.com. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
- "Euro 2016 qualifying: San Marino score first away goal in 14 years". British Broadcasting Company. 9 September 2015. Retrieved 9 September 2015.
- "Latest San Marino Results, Fixtures & Betting Odds | Soccer Base". www.soccerbase.com. Retrieved 6 September 2018.
- European Football
- Mamrud, Roberto. "San Marino - Record International Players". RSSSF.
- Vatican Football
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to San Marino national association football team.|