Montenegro in Europe: 2024/25 Coefficient Preview

The 2024/25 European season is quickly approaching, with 236 clubs set to compete in UEFA’s continental club competitions this season.

With the first qualifying round draws two weeks away, Extratime Talk will be providing a comprehensive coefficient preview. Between now and then, each country will be previewed, and all clubs participating in Europe for the 2024/25 season are discussed.

In these articles, we will provide analyses of what to expect from each country in Europe. We will explore what is on the line from a coefficient standpoint, and the keys to succeeding, in that country’s case.

We are now in the 14th piece of this preview series, where we will take a look at the clubs from Montenegro.

Montenegro In Europe: Country Profile

Previous Season Coefficient (Rank)1.333 (47th)
Previous Season’s 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)5.708 (53rd)
Starting 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)4.708 (51st)

It is a rather grim look for Montenegro heading into the 2024/25 European season. They have gone from being comfortably outside of the bottom five, to starting the season in 51st place, the fifth from bottom. Fortunately for them, the distance between them and 50th place Wales is incredibly small, less than 0.100 points.

That should give the Balkan nation some hope in what will likely be a very difficult year for them. With a European regular in Sutjeska missing out, and a debutant in Mornar Bar replacing them, things do not look very promising for Montenegro. It is very hard to see how they will finish any higher than where they started.

Montenegro In Europe: Club Profile

ClubQualified AsRound of EntryTotal European SeasonsLast Season’s Performance5-Year Club Coefficient (2023/24)5-Year Country Coefficient Contribution, 2023/24 (%)
DečićDomestic ChampionUCL Q13N/A2.0000.125 (2.19%)
Budućnost PodgoricaCup WinnerUECL Q117UECL Q28.0002.083 (36.5%)
Mornar BarDomestic Runner-upUECL Q1DebutN/A1.141N/A

Representing the country in the Champions League qualifiers is first-time champion Dečić. The side from Tuzi managed to beat out Mornar and record champions Budućnost to the title, earning their first appearance in the UCL. In what will be their third European campaign in four seasons, Dečić will unsurprisingly be unseeded in UCL Q1. Despite scoring in all but one of their four all-time European games, Dečić has never won a continental match, losing in Q1 of the Conference League twice. That does not set a promising precedent.

For the fifth time, Budućnost won the Montenegrin Cup last term. That was what got them into Europe, as a late season collapse saw them finish third. Having defeated Jezero in the cup final, Budućnost will be one of Montenegro’s representatives in UECL Q1. They will be seeded for that draw, as well as for Q2. No Montenegrin club has more European showings than Budućnost’s 16, giving them plenty of experience to fall back on. With only one success from four UECL ties, Budućnost will have to do better as the country coefficient will rely on them.

Completing the trio of Montenegrin clubs in Europe is Mornar Bar, who finished second. Before the 2023/24 campaign, they had only finished in the top half of the league on one occasion – a fifth place finish back in 2021/22. As a result, it will be hard to expect anything from the side from Bar. After all, Montenegrin debutants have not gotten past the first hurdle in Europe since 2020/21, as three others have since tried and failed at their first attempt.

Montenegro’s Season Ambitions

The goal will be very simply for Montenegro: to climb out of the bottom five. That looks rather unlikely, but with three clubs in Europe this term, results are worth more points. That is the one advantage to having less teams than many of the competitors.

Four of the current bottom five countries will have three teams in Europe this year. However, the previously mentioned Wales, as well as Georgia and Belarus, all have four teams each. So, aiming for 50th spot must be the goal for Montenegro.

What a Successful Season Would Be for Montenegro

Outside of the obvious of finishing higher than their current position, a successful year for Montenegro should be having multiple teams progress in the qualifying rounds. That is a low challenge, but anything better than that would be a dream year for Montenegro.

Balkan football expert Richard Wilson agrees, pointing out that Dečić and Mornar Bar will not have it easy. “While the Champions League seedings in Q1 look pretty unbalanced, any side facing Dečić would more than fancy their chances,” said Wilson while talking about Dečić’s chances in UCL Q1. The Balkan football expert was even more pessimistic about Mornar, drawing comparisons to Arsenal Tikvat from last season, describing that they are “fortunate to be (in Europe), and empathetic in their departure.”

What to Expect From Montenegro in 2024/25

As Wilson implied, there is very little reason to have any confidence in Montenegro this season. Having two inexperienced clubs on the continental scene from just three sides sets a very dangerous precedent. Furthermore, not having a regular like Sutjeska is even more troublesome.

For reference, between Budućnost and Sutjeska, the pair are responsible for nearly 70% of Montenegro’s five-year coefficient (Budućnost 36.2%, Sutjeska 32.1%). Only Zeta, who will be missing out on European football for the fourth year running, has contributed more than 10% to the coefficient over the last five years.

Thus, expect Montenegro to stay in the bottom five. They would do very well to even maintain their current position. Both Andorra and Belarus are in touching distance of Montenegro, and could realistically pass them. It is quite likely that at least one of those countries, possibly both, will end the year above Montenegro. Bar a big showing from one (or more) of the clubs, this will be a trying year for Montenegrin football in Europe.

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