8 September 2019
Two nations desperate to improve on their UEFA European Championship qualifying (ECQ) form meet face-to-face at the Stadion Rajko Mitić, as Serbia take on Portugal, hopeful that they can post their first competitive win in H2Hs after five unsuccessful attempts (D3, L2).
After holding Portugal to a 1-1 draw in the reversed fixture, the hosts have miserably failed against Ukraine in their subsequent ECQ match, suffering a humiliating 5-0 loss on the road. However, the Serbians have taken no time to bounce back as they go into this encounter off the back of a commanding 4-1 home win over Lithuania. As a result, they are now unbeaten in their last nine competitive home games (W6, D3), with each of their previous three home triumphs seeing Serbia score two or more goals and concede precisely one. Still, the Eagles’ last home defeat in a competitive match arrived exactly against Portugal, 2-1 in 2015, and as their remaining four competitive H2Hs, it saw both teams find the net.
Meanwhile, the visitors are still chasing their elusive first win in the ongoing qualifying campaign, having played out back-to-back draws with Serbia and Ukraine – both of having featured under 2.5 goals. But, the reigning European champions are yet to taste defeat in ten post-World Cup games (W5, D5), with seven of those matches producing less than three goals. The remaining three games in that sequence have overseen a lot of action, with A Seleção das Quinas netting precisely three goals per match in each while conceding at least one. Most recently, Fernando Santos’ side won the UEFA Nations League by beating Switzerland 3-1 in the play-off semi-finals before striking a narrow 1-0 win over the Netherlands in the final.
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