Serbia 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 occurring next week, 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 have reached the 34th article of this series, where Serbia is the next country under the microscope. Here is a look at what we can expect from the Serbian clubs in Europe next term.

Serbia in Europe: Country Profile

Previous Season Coefficient (Rank)1.400 (46th)
Previous Season’s 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)27.775 (19th)
Starting 5-Year Coefficient (Rank)21.775 (20th)

Last season’s showing from the Serbian clubs in Europe was thoroughly shambolic. The country’s five European representatives combined for just one win in 28 games, losing 25 of them. The 1.400 points earned was an all-time low for Serbian football, and it resulted in them tumbling out of the top 15.

Thanks in large part to last term, Serbia starts the 2024/25 season in 19th spot, nearly 5.000 points behind 15th place Greece. The likelihood of Serbia making up the ground of most of the countries above them is very low at this point, and would likely take a record number of points to achieve that. However, unless they have a year like Czechia last year or Turkey the year before, they do not stand a chance at 15th.

Serbia 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 (%)
Crvena zvezdaDomestic ChampionUCL Playoff Round. CH Path29UCL Group Stage40.00013.750 (49.5%)
Partizan BelgradeDomestic Runner-upUCL Q2, Main Path29UECL Play-off Round25.50010.450 (37.62%)
TSC Bačka TopolaDomestic Third PlaceUEL Play-off Round3UEL Group Stage5.5550.825 (2.97%)
VojvodinaDomestic Fourth PlaceUEL Q217UECL Q25.5550.625  (2.25%)
Radnički 1923Domestic Fifth PlaceUECL Q2, Main PathDebutN/A5.555N/A

Crvena zvezda won the league title for the seventh year on the spin. However, unlike last year, where they enjoyed an automatic Champions League, they will start in the competition’s playoff round. Although they will be seeded for that round, they will not have it easy, regardless of who they face.

Their heated rivals, Partizan Belgrade, enters the second qualifying round of the UCL, needing just one win to be assured UEL football in the fall. It was a year to forget for Partizan in 2023/24. There were several disappointments, most notably throwing the league lead away to their rivals. They will certainly see it an opportunity lost.

TSC Bačka Topola enters the UEL playoff round, and will be playing in the main round in Europe for the second fall in a row. After going 0-1-7 in Europe last campaign, they will have to strive for better this time around. They will be unseeded in the UEL playoffs, making a place in the UECL proper look more likely for them.

Vojvodina joins TSC in the UEL, but will commence in Q2. They are the only Serbian club outside of Crvena zvezda and Partizan to have more than 10 European seasons. It has been eight years since the side from Novi Sad last made the playoff round in Europe. They just need to win one tie to make a return there, though that will not be straightforward for them.

Radnički 1923 is Serbia’s representative in the UECL, kicking off in Q2. It is their maiden continental foray, and will have it tough in Q2, since they are unseeded. They held off Čukarički for fifth spot in the league, but was just pipped for fifth place. Still, they will be happy to be in Europe, but will have to perform well to get past their round of entry.

Serbia Season Ambitions

Serbia will have two goals for this year: stay in the race for 15th as long as they can, and to not finish any lower than 20th. If they can at least hold on to a top 20 place, there can be reason for hope of 15th in the future. But, if they slip any further, then even a place in the top 22 is not certain.

A coefficient haul of about 7.000 points should be the goal for Serbia this year. That would likely see them make some headway for 15th in the future. If Serbia wants to be really ambitious, a coefficient of 10.000 or more should be the ambition, if they want any chance of finishing in the top 15 this term.

What a Good Year Would Look Like for Serbia

Well, after last season’s debacle, Serbia just needs to bounce back with a bang. A good year for them is anywhere in the 7.500 coefficient range. Moreover, having at least three teams in the league phase should be seen as a good year, though if Vojvodina can join the clan in the main round, it will be a brilliant year.

Outside of that, if they can get a team in the knockout rounds in Europe, that would be the cherry on top. After a season where just one win from 28 games happened, any team making the knockout round would be a considerable win from a Serbian perspective.

What to Expect from Serbia in 2024/25

It will likely be another difficult year for Serbian football, but nothing as drastic as 2023/24. It is hard to see how a country can go from nightmarish year to something of a dream. But, if they can turn it around, that would be very impressive.

Speaking with Milos Dusanovic from Serbian Football, it is hard to get worse from 2023/24. “It should be better because it cant possibly get any worse,” said Dusanovic when asked about whether there is any hope going into this term.

“I think TSC can surprise, they have continuity with their manager & are making some good signings. Every year the club gets stronger so I think it’s only a matter of time before they make their breakthrough in Europe as well.” – Milos Dusanovic

However, Dusanovic does not expect much from Radnički. “Don’t expect much from them” said the Serbian football expert when asked about what we can expect from the debutant. “They have a good manager who has experience in Europe, but it will be very hard for them.”

Overall, Serbia will not stand a chance at 15th. Since Crvena zvezda and Partizan are the only clubs that win points for the country, it will be quite hard to see Serbia finishing higher than 19th. That is, if they can even get three teams in the league phase. It could even get as worse as 21st if they are not careful. But, so long as there is improvement from last year, that should be seen as the most important thing.

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