5 most popular sports in Serbia

Serbians consider sports an important part of their lifestyle. The country may be small, but its sportspeople have made a name for themselves in various fields. Some of the most popular sports are team sports like football, basketball, volleyball, etc. The national sport of Serbia is football. The country features multiple sports resorts and training facilities for various forms of sports to support the development and growth of these sports. While many kinds of sports are popular in Serbia, some are more than others.

If you are also interested in learning more about the five most popular sports in Serbia, here is your chance to find out.

Tennis In Serbia

While team sports are predominantly preferred in Serbia, tennis has emerged as the most popular sport in the last decade. The credit for the sport’s rising popularity goes to Novak Djokovic, the current world no. 7 tennis player in singles, according to the ATP (Association of Tennis Professionals) ranking. He has consistently been in the top 3 for many years, rising to No. 1 and maintaining the title for a record 373 weeks. 

The tennis legend has won 21 Grand slam titles for men’s singles and 90 ATP single titles. No wonder every aspiring tennis player in Serbia wants to become Novak Djokovic one day. 

You may also be familiar with Monica Seles, the former World no. 1 with eight grand slam singles titles when she represented FR Yugoslavia. Other famous Serbian tennis players included Ana Ivanovic, the winner of the 2008 French Open, and Jelena Jankovic. Both players were ranked no. 1  in the WTA rankings. You may have also heard of Nenad Zimonjic and Janko Tipsarevic. All these players have contributed to the popularity of tennis in Serbia and made it one of the top sports.

Football In Serbia

The next favourite sport on our list is football. A wide majority regards football as the most popular in Serbia. The country may have performed better in tennis internationally, but football takes the lead for most in terms of popularity. Serbia currently has more than 147,000 registered football players with the Football Association of Serbia, making it the country’s largest sporting association.

Serbia is also regarded as one of the world’s biggest exporters of football players as players including Nemanja Matic, Dejan Stankovic, Aleksander Kolarov, etc., play for the most elite European clubs.

However, the national football team does not enjoy the same levels of success as its players. Serbia did manage to qualify for four out of five FIFA World Cups. Its national youth team won the U-19 European Cup Championship and U-20 World Cup in 2013 and 2015, respectively.

Club football is also played extensively in Serbia. Red Star Belgrade and FK Partizan Belgrade are the most prominent clubs in the country. The Red Star won the European and Intercontinental Cup in 1991, and the Partizans were finalists of the European Cup in 1966. The rivalry between the two clubs is called the Eternal Derby and is regarded as one of the most exciting sports rivalries in the world. The Red Star’s stadium Maracana is the largest in its region.

Basketball In Serbia

Basketball is another very popular sport that Serbia excels at. The country’s men’s national team has won the World Championship twice, in 1998 and 2002. The team has also performed phenomenally at the European Championship, winning it in 1995, 1997, and 2001. It also won the FIBA Diamond Ball in 2004 and scored a silver medal at the Olympics twice in 1996 and 20 years later in 2016.

The women’s team also won the European Championship in 2015 and 2021. It was also the recipient of the bronze in 2016. The men’s 3×3 team has also outshone others in the FIBA 3×3 World Cup and Euro Cup.

Numerous Serbian players have been a part of the NBA during the past thirty years. Some of the most outstanding basketball players to have played in the NBA include Predrag Stojakovic, Nikola Jokic, and Vlade Divac, among others.

Volleyball In Serbia

Next, we have volleyball on the list. The sport was first played in Serbia around 1918 by Serbian soldiers. It was formally played in Belgrade in 1924. Serbia has dominated volleyball globally as well. The men’s team won the gold at Olympics in 2000 and scored second and third place at the World and European Championships on three instances. It also dominated the FIVB World League in 2005 and 2009.

The women’s team silver at Olympics in 2016. It also won the FIVB World Championship in 2018 and the Euro Championship in 2011, 2017, and 2019. Serbian players Vladimir Grbic and his brother Nikola Grbic are featured in the Volleyball Hall of Fame. 

Water Polo In Serbia

Last, we have water polo. Other sports, including handball and rugby, are also quite popular in Serbia. Water polo was played in Serbia as early as the beginning of the 20th century. The country’s men’s national team is one of the most successful teams in the world, coming second only to Hungary. 

The team won a gold medal at the Olympics in 2016 and 2020. It has also won the World Championship three times.


Where can I find Serbia sport news?

There are several sources where you can find Serbia sport news. Here are a few options:

1. NewsNow: NewsNow is a news aggregator website that provides the latest news on sport in Serbia from a variety of sources. You can find breaking stories and features in English on the big Serbian sport stories and Serbian sport stars. The website updates continuously 24/7, so check back regularly.

2. BBC Sport: BBC Sport is a well-known sports news website that covers a wide range of sports, including football, rugby, cricket, tennis, and more. They have a dedicated section for Serbia sport news, which includes the latest news stories, results, fixtures, video, and audio.

3. ESPN: ESPN is a popular sports news website that covers a variety of sports from around the world. They have a dedicated section for Serbia sport news, which includes the latest news, scores, stats, standings, rumours, and more.

4. Srbija Danas: Srbija Danas is a Serbian news website that provides the latest news on sport in Serbia, including football, basketball, tennis, and other sports. They also offer live broadcasts of sports events and matches.

Why is Serbia good at sports?

Serbia has a long history of success in various sports, including football, basketball, volleyball, handball, and tennis. There are several factors that may contribute to Serbia’s success in sports:

1. Sports culture: Sports are an important part of Serbian culture and identity, with many young people participating in sports from a young age. This has helped to develop a strong sports culture and talent pool in the country.

2. Investment in sports: The Serbian government and private investors have invested heavily in sports infrastructure and facilities, as well as in training and development programs for athletes. This has helped to create a supportive environment for athletes to train and compete at a high level.

3. Strong coaching and training programs: Serbia has a strong tradition of coaching and training programs, which have helped to develop talented athletes across a range of sports. Many Serbian coaches and trainers are highly respected and sought after around the world.

4. Competitive spirit: Serbian athletes are known for their competitive spirit and determination to succeed. This has helped them to overcome challenges and achieve success in international competitions.

Overall, Serbia’s success in sports can be attributed to a combination of factors, including a strong sports culture, investment in sports infrastructure and training programs, and a competitive spirit among athletes.

What sports are Serbia good at?

Serbia has a strong sporting tradition and has achieved success in a variety of sports. Some of the sports that Serbia is particularly good at include football, basketball, volleyball, handball, and tennis.

Football is one of the most popular sports in Serbia, and the country has a strong national team and several successful football clubs, including Red Star Belgrade and Partizan Belgrade. Serbia has also produced many talented football players who have gone on to play for top clubs around the world.

Basketball is another sport in which Serbia has achieved significant success. The men’s national basketball team has won several European championships and has also performed well in international competitions like the Olympics and the World Cup. Many Serbian basketball players have also had successful careers in the NBA.

Volleyball and handball are also popular sports in Serbia, and the country has had success in both sports at the international level. The men’s national volleyball team has won several European championships and has also performed well in the World Cup and the Olympics. The women’s national handball team has also won several European championships and has performed well in international competitions.

Finally, Serbia has a strong tradition in tennis and has produced many talented tennis players, including Novak Djokovic, who is widely considered to be one of the greatest tennis players of all time. Other successful Serbian tennis players include Ana Ivanovic, Jelena Jankovic, and Nenad Zimonjic.

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