UEFA bans Serbia coach ahead of Euro 2020 playoff final match

The European Football Association (UEFA) fined the Serbian Football Association (FŠ) and suspended Serbian coach LjubišaTumbaković for one match due to the delay of Serbian players in the match against Hungary last 11 October. UEFA did not specify, however, whether Tumbakovic is to serve the ban against Scotland or for Serbia’s Nations League visit to Hungary on Nov. 15.

“The body of control, ethics and discipline has decided to fine the Serbian federation for causing a delay in the start of the match. It has also decided to suspend coach Ljubisa Tumbakovićfor one UEFA competition game in which he was to participate, and fined him EUR 5, 000,” UEFA wrote in a statement from the European headquarters.

IDuring the incident last month, Serbia came out of the tunnel several minutes late at Red Star stadium for the Group B3 match. Serbia aims to qualify for its first European Championship as an independent nation, with Scotland vying for its first appearance since 1996. Scotland beat Israel in a penalty shootout in Glasgow after a 0-0 draw during the semis last month.

Meanwhile, Tumbakovic told a video news conference earlier this week that he “will be on the bench against Scotland,” as he also answered questions about Serbia’s chances of winning the one-off home tie on Nov.12 and clinching a berth in next year’s European Championships . “They are a physical and compact side with several players plying their trade at top Premier League clubs,” said the 68-year old.

Norway’s talisman Erling Haaland was stunned by Lazio midfielder Sergej Milinković-Savić, who scored twice to lift Serbia into the finals with a 2-1 extra-time, ending Norway’s Euro 2020 qualification berth. The winners of the play-off in Belgrade will join Group D of the European Championship, where England, the Czech Republic and Croatia are already waiting.

In the Nations League, Serbia is last in Division B Group 3 with just two points after four matches. Russia is in the lead – (8 points), ahead of Hungary (7) and Turkey (3). If Tumbakovicwill appear in the match against Scotland, he will then not be allowed to sit on the bench in the next Nations League match against Hungary in Budapest.

Four nations will qualify for EURO 2020 while the play-offs will take place on Nov. 12.   The winner will join a Euro 2020 group with the Netherlands, Ukraine and Austria. Games will be played in Amsterdam and Bucharest. Euro 2020, originally scheduled for June 12-July 12, was pushed back 12 months because of the Covid-19 pandemic and is now due to be held from June 11-July 11 next year.