The 2018 World Cup is underway. CBS Sports will have you covered for each game, all the important news and more, as well as profiles of all of the teams.

After missing the 2014 World Cup, Serbia's 2018 appearance did not go as planned. It started off strong with a win against Costa Rica (and it held the group lead after one match), but it lost its two subsequent matches to eventual group survivors Switzerland and Brazil.

Serbia could have punched its ticket to the knockout stage with a win over Brazil on Wednesday, but it was dominated by Canarinha in the final match of group play.

Competition history

World Cup appearances: 12
Best finish: Third place in 1930
Last World Cup: 2010


Sunday, June 17: Serbia 1, Costa Rica 0   
Friday, June 22: Switzerland 2, Serbia 1
Wednesday, June 27: Brazil 2, Serbia 1 


Serbia's core of players may be past their prime, but they are ready to surprise.  Getty Images

Goalkeepers: Vladimir Stojkovic (FK Partizan Belgrade), Predrag Rajkovic (Maccabi Tel Aviv), Aleksandar Jovanovic (AGF), Marko Dmitrovic (Eibar)

Defenders: Aleksandar Kolarov (Roma), Antonio Rukavina (Villarreal), Milan Rodic (Red Star Belgrade), Branislav Ivanovic (Zenit Saint Petersburg), Uros Spajic (Anderlecht), Milos Veljkovic (Werder Bremen), Dusko Tosic (Besiktas), Matija Nastasic (Schalke), Nikola Milenkovic (Fiorentina)

Midfielders: Nemanja Matic (Manchester United), Luka Milivojevic (Crystal Palace), Marko Grujic (Cardiff City), Nemanja Maksimovic (Valencia), Dusan Tadic (Southampton), Andrija Zivkovic (Benfica), Mijat Gacinovic (Eintracht), Filip Kostic (Hamburger SV), Nemanja Radonjic (Red Star Belgrade), Sergej Milinkovic-Savic (Lazio), Adem Ljajic (Torino)

Forwards: Aleksandar Mitrovic (Fulham), Aleksandar Prijovic (PAOK Thessaloniki), Luka Jovic (Eintracht Frankfurt)

Best Player

Nemanja Matic. The Manchester United midfielder will likely be the team's vice-captain this summer and he's done well for his club. He has a rifle of a shot from range and can help control the pace in the middle of the field. He'll be the engine in the middle and will be tasked with connecting the backline and the frontline with quick passes. Expect to see him play plenty of balls down the flank as the team tries to use its ability in the air to do damage in the final third. 

Player to watch

Aleksandar Mitrovic. The young striker struggled to make much of an impact at Newcastle but has been on fire since joining Newcastle on loan.  He's got 12 goals in 19 appearances as the Cottagers are on the verge of Premier League promotion. He's clinical and has the potential to be a very strong striker. He's strong, good in the air and full of confidence, just what this team needs.


The heart of its defense in Aleksandrar Kolarov and Branislav Ivanovic, and they could be more of a liability than an asset. Players with plenty of talent, there's no doubt that they have lost a step, but they aren't alone. The squad could feature five defenders over the age of 32, but there is youth elsewhere that has fans excited. But if they can control the midfield, with Matic and Dusan Tadic the main guys, they'll have a shot of getting out of the group stage.  

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