The Iron Gate Derby: Romania-Yugoslavia (and its successor states) matches 1922-2022


Introduction
Official Matches

Introduction

Three decades after the dissolution of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the former neighbours on the other side of the Porțile de Fier remain Romania's most frequent opponents on a football field; likewise, Yugoslavia did not play any country more often than the one downstream from the Đerdapska klisura.

Apart from Belgium and France, Romania and Yugoslavia were the only European participants at the first ever World Cup, 1930 in Montevideo, and both did the old continent proud: Romania defeated a very physical (not to say violent) Peru 3-1, in spite of losing Steiner after just 10 minutes of play due to a double fracture of his right leg incurred after a foul by De Souza, who went on to score Peru's only goal, before falling 0-4 to the hosts, whose first goal came from an offside position, while Yugoslavia eliminated both Brazil (2-1) and Bolivia (4-0) before succumbing 1-6 to Uruguay in the semi-final – after taking the lead, and two irregular goals by the reigning Olympic champions and eventual winners (who again scored their first from an offside position and their third after the ball had clearly been out of play but crossed back onto the field by a policeman).
The two sides from Southeastern Europe, who did not count among the Úlite on the continent and had a combined Olympic Games record of 4 played, 4 lost, 1 goal scored, and 22 goals conceded, thus gave a far better account of themselves than the two Western European representatives, who in spite of having won one Olympic gold medal (Belgium) c.q. having reached two Olympic semi-finals (France, lost 2-21 on aggregate) managed just one win (France's 4-1 against Mexico, who lost all their three matches by a 3-goal margin) between them in five matches (losing the other four without so much as scoring a goal, though France put up a more than credible performance against Argentina in a match in which they were clearly disadvantaged by Rego, the Brazilian referee who later also heavily favoured Uruguay, who hardly needed his help but were more than happy to accept it, against both Romania and Yugoslavia).

After 40 official matches spanning more than 60 years, the overall balance is roughly even, with either side able to claim the advantage depending on whether or not one counts three matches which were considered official by both federations when they were played before and at the 1964 Olympics, but later deemed unofficial by FIFA (or rather the late Dr. Alfredo Pöge of the IFFHS with his statistical crusade against East Germany in particular and formerly communist countries in general).
Among those forty-odd meetings, the most spectacular undoubtedly was the November 1977 World Cup qualifier in Bucharest which produced ten goals and a Romanian trauma, as the hosts, who with a win would have had a good shot at qualifying for Argentina (depending on whether and if so by how much Spain would win its final match in Belgrade), lost 4-6 in spite of taking a 3-2 half-time lead.

Among the countries created after the violent disintegration of Yugoslavia, Croatia caused the Romanians most headaches, especially in the second round at the 1998 World Cup in France, when the yellow-haired Tricolorii, hopeful of emulating or even improving on their 1994 showing in the United States after defeating both Colombia and England in the group stage, fell 0-1 in a pretty awful match against the eventual bronze medalists.


Official Matches

All matches listed are friendlies unless otherwise stated.

Romania vs. Yugoslavia

Game    Date    Venue                     Result                 Remark

  1.  8- 6-1922 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-2 Romania          [King Alexander Cup]
  2. 10- 6-1923 București       Romania     1-2 Yugoslavia       [King Alexander Cup]
  3.  3-10-1926 Zagreb          Yugoslavia  2-3 Romania          [King Alexander Cup]
  4. 10- 5-1927 București       Romania     0-3 Yugoslavia       [King Alexander Cup]
  5.  6- 5-1928 Beograd         Yugoslavia  3-1 Romania          [King Alexander Cup]
  6. 10- 5-1929 București       Romania     2-3 Yugoslavia       [King Alexander Cup]      
  7.  6-10-1929 București       Romania     2-1 Yugoslavia       
  8.  4- 5-1930 Beograd         Yugoslavia  2-1 Romania          [King Alexander Cup]
  9. 28- 6-1931 Zagreb          Yugoslavia  2-4 Romania          [Balkan Cup]
 10.  3- 7-1932 Beograd         Yugoslavia  3-1 Romania          [Balkan Cup]
 11. 11- 6-1933 București       Romania     5-0 Yugoslavia       [Balkan Cup]
 12. 29- 4-1934 București       Romania     2-1 Yugoslavia       [World Cup Qualifier]
 13.  1- 1-1935 Athinai         Yugoslavia  4-0 Romania          [Balkan Cup]
 14. 17- 6-1935 Sofia           Yugoslavia  2-0 Romania          [Balkan Cup]
 15. 10- 5-1936 București       Romania     3-2 Yugoslavia       [King Alexander Cup]
 16.  8- 9-1937 Beograd         Yugoslavia  2-1 Romania          [King Carol Cup]
 17.  8- 5-1938 București       Romania     0-1 Yugoslavia       [Eduard Beneš Cup]
 18.  6- 9-1938 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-1 Romania          [Eduard Beneš Cup]
 19.  7- 5-1939 București       Romania     1-0 Yugoslavia       [King Carol Cup]
 20. 31- 3-1940 București       Romania     3-3 Yugoslavia       [Danube Cup]
 21. 22- 9-1940 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-2 Romania          [Danube Cup (and King Mihai Cup)]
 22. 11-10-1946 Tiranë          Romania     2-1 Yugoslavia       [Balkan Cup]
 23. 22- 6-1947 București       Romania     1-3 Yugoslavia       [Balkan Cup/Central Europ. Champ.]
 24. 22- 4-1956 Beograd         Yugoslavia  0-1 Romania         
 25. 29- 9-1957 București       Romania     1-1 Yugoslavia       [World Cup Qualifier]
 26. 17-11-1957 Beograd         Yugoslavia  2-0 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]
 27. 27-10-1963 București       Romania     2-1 Yugoslavia       [Olympic test match]
 28. 17- 6-1964 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-2 Romania          [Olympic test match]
 29. 22-10-1964 Ōsaka           Romania     3-0 Yugoslavia       [Olympic Games Consolation Tourn.]
 30.  3- 9-1969 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-1 Romania             
 31.  6- 5-1970 București       Romania     0-0 Yugoslavia       
 32. 21- 4-1971 Novi Sad        Yugoslavia  0-1 Romania          
 33.  8- 5-1977 Zagreb          Yugoslavia  0-2 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]     
 34. 13-11-1977 București       Romania     4-6 Yugoslavia       [World Cup Qualifier]   
 35. 25-10-1978 București       Romania     3-2 Yugoslavia       [European Champ. Qual.]   
 36. 31-10-1979 Tit. Mitrovica  Yugoslavia  2-1 Romania          [European Champ. Qual.]
 37. 31- 3-1980 Beograd         Yugoslavia  2-0 Romania          [Balkan Cup]    
 38. 27- 8-1980 București       Romania     4-1 Yugoslavia       [Balkan Cup]                 
 39. 30- 3-1983 Timișoara       Romania     0-2 Yugoslavia       
 40.  1- 6-1983 Sarajevo        Yugoslavia  1-0 Romania          

Total record:

Romania              40 18  5 17  63- 65  41  [37 15  5 17  56- 63  35]
Yugoslavia           40 17  5 18  65- 63  39  [37 17  5 15  63- 56  39]

NB: this includes 3 Olympic matches later declared unofficial by FIFA
    (although both countries originally considered them official);
    between square brackets the records without those matches

Some more stats:

                     Pd  R  D  Y  RG- YG

In Romania:          18  8  3  7  34- 32  [17  7  3  7  32- 31]
In Yugoslavia:       18  8  2  8  24- 26  [17  7  2  8  22- 25]
Elsewhere:            4  2  0  2   5-  7  [ 3  1  0  2   2-  7]

NB: this includes 3 Olympic matches later declared unofficial by FIFA
    (although both countries originally considered them official);
    between square brackets the records without those matches

Romania vs. Yugoslavia/Serbia and Montenegro

  1. 27- 3-1996 Beograd         Yugoslavia  1-0 Romania  
  2. 15-11-2000 București       Romania     2-1 Yugoslavia

Total record:

Romania               2  1  0  1   2-  2   2
Yugoslavia            2  1  0  1   2-  2   2

Romania vs. Serbia

  1. 28- 3-2009 Constanța       Romania     2-3 Serbia           [World Cup Qualifier]
  2. 10-10-2009 Beograd         Serbia      5-0 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]
  3. 10- 9-2018 Beograd         Serbia      2-2 Romania          [European Nations League]
  4. 14-10-2018 București       Romania     0-0 Serbia           [European Nations League]

Total record:

Romania               4  0  2  2   4- 10   2
Serbia                4  2  2  0  10-  4   6

Overall record Romania vs. Yugoslavia/Serbia and Montenegro/Serbia

Total record:

Romania              46 19  7 20  69- 77  45  [43 16  7 20  62- 75  39]
Yugoslavia           46 20  7 19  77- 69  47  [43 20  7 16  75- 62  47]

NB: this includes 3 Olympic matches later declared unofficial by FIFA
    (although both countries originally considered them official);
    between square brackets the records without those matches

Some more stats:

                     Pd  R  D  Y  RG- YG

In Romania:          21  9  4  8  38- 36  [20  8  4  8  36- 35]
In Yugoslavia:       21  8  3 10  26- 34  [20  7  3 10  24- 33]
Elsewhere:            4  2  0  2   5-  7  [ 3  1  0  2   2-  7]

NB: this includes 3 Olympic matches later declared unofficial by FIFA
    (although both countries originally considered them official);
    between square brackets the records without those matches


Romania vs. Bosnia-Herzegovina

  1.  7- 9-2002 Sarajevo        Bosnia-H.   0-3 Romania          [European Champ. Qual.]
  2.  7- 6-2003 Craiova         Romania     2-0 Bosnia-H.        [European Champ. Qual.]
  3. 26- 3-2011 Zenica          Bosnia-H.   2-1 Romania          [European Champ. Qual.]
  4.  3- 6-2011 București       Romania     3-0 Bosnia-H.        [European Champ. Qual.]
  5.  7- 6-2022 Zenica          Bosnia-H.   1-0 Romania          [European Nations League]
  6. 26- 9-2022 București       Romania     4-1 Bosnia-H.        [European Nations League]

Total record:

Romania               6  4  0  2  13-  4   8
Bosnia-Herzegovina    6  2  0  4   4- 13   4

Romania vs. Croatia

  1. 11-10-1942 București       Romania     2-2 Croatia
  -. 26-12-1990 Rijeka          Croatia     2-0 Romania   [*]     
  2. 30- 6-1998 Bordeaux        Croatia     1-0 Romania          [World Cup]
  3. 20-11-2002 Timișoara       Romania     0-1 Croatia  
  4. 11- 2-2009 București       Romania     1-2 Croatia       

[*] this match is official for Croatia but not for Romania (and is therefore not
    included in the overview below)

Total record:

Romania               4  0  1  3   3-  6   1
Croatia               4  3  1  0   6-  3   7

Romania vs. (North) Macedonia

  1. 14-12-1996 Skopje          Macedonia   0-3 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]
  2. 20- 8-1997 București       Romania     4-2 Macedonia        [World Cup Qualifier]
  3.  4- 9-2004 Craiova         Romania     2-1 Macedonia        [World Cup Qualifier]
  4. 30- 3-2005 Skopje          Macedonia   1-2 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]
  5.  2- 6-2010 Villach         Macedonia   1-0 Romania            
  6. 25- 3-2021 București       Romania     3-2 North Macedonia  [World Cup Qualifier]
  7.  8- 9-2021 Skopje          N.Macedonia 0-0 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]

Total record:

Romania               7  5  1  1  14-  7  11
(North) Macedonia     7  1  1  5   7- 14   3

Romania vs. Montenegro

  1. 31- 5-2008 București       Romania     4-0 Montenegro
  2.  4- 9-2016 Cluj            Romania     1-1 Montenegro       [World Cup Qualifier]
  3.  4- 9-2017 Podgorica       Montenegro  1-0 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]
  4.  7- 9-2018 Ploiești        Romania     0-0 Montenegro       [European Nations League]
  5. 20-11-2018 Podgorica       Montenegro  0-1 Romania          [European Nations League]
  6.  4- 6-2022 Podgorica       Montenegro  2-0 Romania          [European Nations League]
  7. 14- 6-2022 București       Romania     0-3 Montenegro       [European Nations League]

Total record:

Romania               7  2  2  3   6-  7   6
Montenegro            7  3  2  2   7-  6   8

Romania vs. Slovenia

  1.  1- 6-1994 București       Romania     0-0 Slovenia         
  2. 15- 8-2001 Ljubljana       Slovenia    2-2 Romania           
  3. 10-11-2001 Ljubljana       Slovenia    2-1 Romania          [World Cup Qualifier]      
  4. 14-11-2001 București       Romania     1-1 Slovenia         [World Cup Qualifier]  
  5.  1- 3-2006 Larnaka         Romania     2-0 Slovenia         [Cyprus Tournament]
  6.  2- 6-2007 Celje           Slovenia    1-2 Romania          [European Champ. Qual.] 
  7.  6- 6-2007 Timișoara       Romania     2-0 Slovenia         [European Champ. Qual.]  
  8. 15- 8-2012 Ljubljana       Slovenia    4-3 Romania    
  9. 17-11-2022 Cluj            Romania     1-2 Slovenia           

Total record:

Romania               9  3  3  3  14- 12   9
Slovenia              9  3  3  3  12- 14   9


Romania - List of International Matches
Yugoslavia - List of International Matches

Bosnia-Herzegovina - List of International Matches
Croatia - List of International Matches
(North) Macedonia - List of International Matches
Montenegro - List of International Matches
Yugoslavia/Serbia and Montenegro - List of International Matches
Serbia - List of International Matches
Slovenia - List of International Matches


About this document

Prepared and maintained by Karel Stokkermans for the Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation

Author: Karel Stokkermans
Last updated: 22 Nov 2022

(C) Copyright Karel Stokkermans and RSSSF 2018/22
You are free to copy this document in whole or part provided that proper acknowledgement is given to the author. All rights reserved.