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Slovenia hoping for 1st European Championship win when it plays Serbia. But a draw is more likely

MUNICH (AP) — Slovenia faces Serbia on Thursday in Munich in their second Group C match. Serbia is bottom of the group after a narrow 1-0 loss to England in its opener while Slovenia managed a 1-1 draw against Denmark. Kickoff is at 3 p.m. local time (1300 GMT). Here’s what to know about the match:

Match facts

— Slovenia will be hopeful of recording its first-ever group stage win to leave it with a good chance of making the knockout stages for the first time.

— Serbia has advanced out of the group before but when it was competing as Yugoslavia or Serbia and Montenegro. This is its first European Championship as an independent nation.

— The two teams met at Euro 2000 — the last time either qualified — with 10-man Yugoslavia fighting back from three goals down to draw 3-3. Serbia coach Dragan Stojković was a substitute during that match.

Team news

— Neither coach has reported any injury concerns.

By the numbers

— There has been little to choose between the teams over the years with six of the eight matches they’ve played ending in a draw. They have one win apiece.

— Slovenia is on a seven-match unbeaten run that included a surprise 2-0 win over Portugal in a friendly international in March.

What they’re saying

— “We’re going to do whatever we can against Slovenia, we have to win that. I congratulate all the players (after the England match), there are no frustrations apart from the result. I don’t like losing but it’s part of the job.” Serbia coach Dragan Stojković.

— “Many of my players have never played in such a big competition. When we saw something was possible (against Denmark), they started playing.” Slovenia coach Matjaž Kek.

— ” How we start is important and we want to set the tone from the beginning. We are the tallest team at the Euro and we need to be even more dangerous from set-pieces.” Serbia defender Nikola Milenković.


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