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Football in Luxembourg

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Football in Luxembourg
CountryLuxembourg
Governing bodyLuxembourg Football Federation
National team(s)Men, U21, U19, U17
Women
National competitions
Club competitions
International competitions

Football in Luxembourg is governed by the Luxembourg Football Federation (FLF), which is a member of FIFA and UEFA. The FLF organises the men's, women's and futsal national teams, in addition to the main domestic competitions, the National Division and the Luxembourg Cup.

Despite football being so popular, Luxembourg has rarely had a club pass the second round of qualifying for the Champions League. However, in the 2018-19 Europa League, F91 Dudelange became the first team from Luxembourg to qualify to the group stage of a major European Competition when they beat CFR Cluj of Romania in the Play-Offs 5-2 on aggregate.

The first match of the national team was played on 29 October 1911 (defeat 1–4 against France [1]), while the first women's game was a 0–4 defeat to Slovakia on 18 November 2006 [2].

History[edit]

The oldest football club in Luxembourg is Fola Esch, founded as the "Football and Lawntennis Club" on 9 December 1906 by English language teacher Jean Roeder[3]. Being the oldest club in the country, they are also part of the Club of Pioneers, a group set up by Sheffield FC to join together the oldest clubs in each country.

It wasn't until 1908 that enough clubs had been created to form the Luxembourg Football Federation (FLF)[4]. The following year, in 1909, the FLF organised the first National Division league, which would be won by Racing Club Luxembourg[5]. Racing were also the first team to win the inaugural Luxembourg Cup 12 years later[6]. The women's league started in the 1971–73 season and was won by the Atert Bissen women's team[7]. A women's cup competition started in 2001–02, where the Progrès Niederkorn women's team won the trophy[8].

Luxembourg, as a nation, was affiliated with FIFA in 1910, and then with UEFA in 1954. The first match of the national team was a 1–4 defeat at home to France on 29 October 1910[9]. It was only in 2006 that the national women's team played their first game, a 0–4 defeat to Slovakia at home in the 2009 UEFA Euro Qualifying stage[10]. The country hosted their first, and so far only, national tournament in 2006 when they hosted the Euro Under-17 Euro tournament[11], where they failed to progress beyond the group stage. Until 2017, Luxembourg were consistently ranked outside the top 100 teams by FIFA[12], but after some good results, namely in the UEFA Nations League, they are now ranked 84th.

The national stadium, Stade Josy Barthel, was inaugurated in 1931 and has hosted the majority of the nation team's home matches. In addition to national games, the stadium has also been used to host various European Competition games, especially in the latter stages of qualification and the Europa League Group Stage games of F91 Dudelange, were the stadium of teams did not meet UEFA criteria. In 2017, construction of a new national stadium was started in Kockelsheier, set to be opened in 2019 [13].

Since the turn of the century, the domestic league has been dominated by F91 Dudelange, having won 14 league titles as well as 7 Luxembourg Cup titles. This is still some way behind the most successful team in the country, Jeunesse Esch, with 28 league titles, however Dudelange was only founded as recently as 1991. They added to this success by becoming the first Luxembourgish team to qualify for the Group Stage of the Europa League in 2018–19, after dropping out of the Champions League Qualification Stage [14].

Rankings[edit]

FIFA Ranking[edit]

FIFA World Rankings as of 7 February 2019.[15]
Rank Change Team Points
85 Decrease 4  Lebanon 1277
85 Steady  Gabon 1277
87 Decrease 1  Luxembourg 1276
87 Decrease 1  Cyprus 1276
89 Increase 6  Uzbekistan 1275

UEFA Coefficient[edit]

UEFA Coefficient Rankings as of 23 October 2018.[16]
Rank Change Team Points
41 Increase 2  Lithuania 6.75
42 Decrease 2  Latvia 5.625
43 Increase 5  Luxembourg 5.25
44 Increase 2  Armenia 5.25
45 Increase 2  Malta 5.125

League system[edit]

Level League Promotion/Relegation
1 National Division
14 clubs
Relegated 2–3 clubs
2 Division of Honour
14 clubs
PromotedRelegated 2–4 clubs
3 1. Division Serie 1
14 clubs
1. Division Serie 2
14 clubs
PromotedRelegated 4–6 clubs
4 2. Division Serie 1
14 clubs
2. Division Serie 2
14 clubs
PromotedRelegated 3–6 clubs
5 3. Division Serie 1
10 clubs
3. Division Serie 2
10 clubs
Promoted 3–6 clubs

Source: [17][18]

Seasons in Luxembourg Football[edit]

The National Division started with the 1909–10 season, which was won by Racing Club Luxembourg. The Luxembourg Cup was started twelve seasons later, with the 1921–22 edition being won by Racing Club Luxembourg. During the 1912–13 and 1940–41 to 1943–44 there were no competitive competitions held in Luxembourg.

Luxembourg Clubs in European Competitions[edit]

Luxembourg football clubs have participated in European football competitions since Spora Luxembourg first took part in the 1956–57 European Cup. In total, 23 different clubs have since represented Luxembourg in European competition. Of these, 14 are still in existence while the remaining 9 were merged into a new or existing team.

In the 2018–19 UEFA Europa League, F91 Dudelange became the first Luxembourgish club to compete in the Group Stage of a modern European competition.

National team[edit]

The national team has had limited international success and has never qualified for a European Championship or World Cup. [19][20]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Live Scores - Luxembourg - Matches". FIFA. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  2. ^ "Live Scores - Luxembourg - Women's - Matches". FIFA. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
  3. ^ "CS Fola Esch - Historique" [CS Fola Esch - History] (in French). CS Fola Esch. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  4. ^ "Luxembourg - Association Information". FIFA. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  5. ^ Schöggl, Hans. "Luxembourg 1909/10". RSSSF. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  6. ^ Stokkermans, Karel. "Luxembourg - List of Cup Finals". RSSSF. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  7. ^ Garin, Erik. "Luxembourg - List of Women Champions". RSSSF. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  8. ^ Schöggl, Hans. "Luxembourg - List of Women Cup Winners". RSSSF. Retrieved 20 November 2018.
  9. ^ "Live Scores - Luxembourg - Matches". FIFA.com. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  10. ^ "Live Scores - Luxembourg - Women's - Matches". FIFA.com. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  11. ^ "Under-17 - Russian determination wins out". UEFA.com. Retrieved 23 November 2018.
  12. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
  13. ^ "Nouveau stade" [New Stadium] (in French). FLF. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
  14. ^ Colin, Jean-François. "Revue de presse: entre extase et incrédulité" [Press review: between ecstasy and disbelief] (in French). Wort.lu. Retrieved 26 November 2018.
  15. ^ "The FIFA/Coca-Cola World Ranking". FIFA. 7 February 2019. Retrieved 7 February 2019.
  16. ^ "Member Associations-UEFA Coefficients". UEFA. 23 October 2018. Retrieved 23 October 2018.
  17. ^ "Fédération Luxembourgeoise de Football". FLF. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  18. ^ "National Division". Soccerway. Retrieved 12 November 2018.
  19. ^ Ames, Nick (10 September 2018). "Luxembourg thrive among their peers and can dream of Euro 2020 place - Nick Ames". the Guardian. Retrieved 11 September 2018.
  20. ^ "When Saturday Comes - Life of Luxe". Wsc.co.uk. 2012-07-09. Retrieved 2013-12-03.

External links[edit]

  • (in French) flf.lu - Luxembourg football federation
  • (in French) [1] - Luxembourg