Gibraltar to play away friendly double-header in June

The Gibraltar National Team will take on Slovenia and Andorra in away friendlies in June.

Photo (C) William Gracia

After the March international triple-header, Julio Ribas’ side don’t have any competitive internationals until September, but with a window for friendlies available in June just before the rescheduled Euro’s, the opportunity to get more matches under the national teams belt has come up, and Gib will be taking on teams ranked 63rd and 158th in the world respectively.

Slovenia, who were promoted from League C of the Nations League last time out, so won’t be a potential opponent when Gib are drawn into that league, impressively beat Croatia in the last international break before defeats away at Russia and Cyprus. In Atletico’s Jan Oblak, they have arguably the best goalkeeper in world football, while Josip Ilicic of Atalanta is a known talent who has been part of one of the most exciting attacking teams in Europe in the last couple of seasons.

As for Andorra, this will be the first meeting in football between two of UEFA’s smallest populated nations – they finished bottom of their Nations League D group last time out, which Faroe Islands qualified from, but are an improving nation nonetheless and will provide a good challenge for the national team. Like Gib, they have a number of older, experienced internationals, but the most recognisable of them all, Ildefons Lima, will not likely be involved in the national team after he was exiled from the national team when he questioned the return of football in the principality without any Covid-19 testing measures in place. His 128 caps and 11 goals from centre-back made him Andorra’s leading appearance maker and goalscorer, and fans of Lincoln will recognise him after he scored for Santa Coloma in Lincoln’s 2-1 victory in Andorra – the first time a Gibraltarian side won a Champions League qualifying tie.

The Andorra game will take place at the Estadi Nacional on 7th June, while the friendly vs Slovenia, on 4th June, has no confirmed venue as of yet – kick-off times for both matches will be announced in due course.