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Discussion Starter #1
This is a big interview with Radomir Antić after the win against Romania in the Madrid-based paper AS. I got it today and translated the whole thing. There might be some bad translations, but I did my best.

Enjoy.




The victory over Romania in Constanţa has put Serbia into the best position to qualify for the 2010 FIFA World Cup..
-"Yes, this win confirmed that we're on the right path and we were certainly going for it. Everything is going according to plan, but the most important thing is to get people excited about the serbian national team again."

-"My initial goal when I took over was to get the people to re-identify themselves with their national team, colors and the best formula to do this was build a team with character. The atmosphere after this win was euphoric. I think this is exactly what we need considering how much serbian football has suffered in the past couple of years."

-"We're happy, almost euphoric and very inspired after getting this result. It so much more than a good result, there's nothing better than making people happy. People see things in a different way now, football and sports in general has always been important to us serbs that we're now recieving so much praise in our homeland.."

Tell us a little about this serbian team that has won four out of five matches so far, scoring 12 goals and conceding 5 while only losing to France..
-"We didn't have to lose that game against France either and I really mean it. We were missing several keyplayers due to injury rather than the french being superior."

-"There's a mixture between veterans like Vidić, the great captain Stanković and Dragutinović, but there's also plenty of young players around; Subotić is one of those, he reminds me of Fernando Hierro, he's only 20 years old, grew up in the United States and he can play as a central midfielder. Kačar is another young player, he plays for Hertha and has been injured for a while, but will be back to show his quality soon. The same goes for Ivan Obradović, a left-back who can score goals, just like he did in Austria. He likes to come forward on his flank and provide support offensively. Then there's Krasić, Pantelić.. This is a good team who's balanced on the same time and we're playing for our fans. They always want to attack, we have a lot of movement without the ball, the players already understand the strategy of our game."

It seems like you're trying to get them to play like Spain..
-"Yes. My idea is that Serbia will play similar to La Selección, but with each and every players own characteristics, they're not the same as Spains. My philosophy has always been that."

All of Antićs teams have been trying to play offensive football..
-"Spain found their true style against Denmark in the qualifying campaign to EURO 2008. They played with all the small players and they've continued with this formula. Spains success is supported in the statistics, this is a team that has the biggest amount of passes, who defends very well and rarely concedes any goals. 30 games without a loss shows how good they actually are."

-"Our goal has always been to have more possession. We managed to complete 430 passes in one of our games and that isn't far away from Spains 530 against Sweden in the European Championship, but it's still very good. These things tells you a little about what we want to achieve and the mentality we've chosen. I've never been a fan of using systems, but instead I instill concepts. The most important thing is to know how to behave when you've got the ball and when you're without it. You could say that we almost play a 4-2-4 formation, but the players do it with authority. I've told them that if we qualify for the World Cup, that we could go even further into the tournament."

Would you take on Spain without fear at this moment?
-"Yes. I'd like to play against Spain, this is a team that everyone wants to play and be able to beat considering they have 30 games wtihout a loss."

Are you capable of doing it?
-"Why not? We're prepared for everything. I don't take on any game thinking that I'm inferior to the opposition and that's what I'm trying to instill into my players. We've got to put up higher goals. We have already won two games away from home and managed to score a total of six goals in those. This is why people are starting to return to the stadiums. Our greatest victory would be to fill Marakana again."

-"When Serbia played against Poland in Marakana less than 1,5 years ago there were more poles than serbs in the stadium. That tells you the difference between then and now."

-"We're on the right way, for instance, we had offers to play in Oman and Azerbaijan and there was a lot of money involved, but we preferred to play against Sweden who's a strong opponent. These kind of games will make us grow."

It's is pretty well known that Iniesta is your favourite player, would you like to have a player of his characteristics?
-"No, not really. I don't sit down and complain about something that I'm missing. I ask the players to give their maximum and they offer me their full potential that way. That's what they're doing as well. The atmosphere is incredible. The players are really keen on playing together. I know Iniesta well from my time at Barcelona, he was a youth player back then, the same goes for Xavi who got more playing time in centre of the field. Puyol was moved to CB. I don't want any medals for introducing them to the team. I wanted Bojan to play for Serbia, but he decided to play for Spain and I congratulated him while wishing him good luck."

-"I think I've come at the right time because I'm enjoying doing what I really like and that is being the coach of the serbian national team. To see people following and enjoying the national team is priceless."
 

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Thanks Zoric,

Antic really is a legendary man. With him at the helm I honestly don't see us losing that many matches these days, with him at the helm our players are playing with the spirit and fight that has won us so much in the past (general sports) and is something that on its day can beat the skill of a superior team...
 

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I was one of those people who questioned the sacking of Djukic and appointment of Antic, but seeing what Antic is like, im over the moon to have a coach like him. Im expecting bigger and better things to come out of all this.
 

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He has all the traits that were lacking from the previous coaches that made them fail. With clemente there was no pride to be Serbian coach, you can see thats not the case with Antic. With pride you have bigger hopes of what your team and fans can be like. He is instilling the eye of the tiger. After the romanian game i told my friend we finally have a world class coach but then i started thinking, do we or were the previous coaches so bad he looks like he is world class? Combination of both I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I was one of those people who questioned the sacking of Djukic and appointment of Antic, but seeing what Antic is like, im over the moon to have a coach like him. Im expecting bigger and better things to come out of all this.
I was against kicking Miroslav Đukić the way FSS did it, but it turned out to be a good thing even though I'm still dissapointed at the way he was sacked (they literally kicked him out, even though it was Terzić who appointed him), not because he actually was sacked. Đukić didn't have enough experience while Antićs knowledge and authoirty seems to be two deciding factors. He also has a attacking approach to the game which has always suited Serbia better than sitting back and defending.

He always talks about having the right ponašanje, meaning the players have to be prod of playing for this country, they have to show that they deserve to play and without complaining. This is certainly something that has been missing for many many years and it now seems like Antić has fixed the atmosphere as well.

This man is very intelligent, watches loads of football and learns new things even though he's 60 years old now.
 

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The man is a true legend :proud:

I was also against the sacking of Djukic however i did like it that Antic was appointed as manager just because of the teams and success he has had. The best part of Antic being manager is that he wants the fans to return to the Marakana which no other manager mentioned. Antic is bringing national pride back in to Serbia and hopefully it continues. :thmbup:
 

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He always talks about having the right ponašanje, meaning the players have to be prod of playing for this country, they have to show that they deserve to play and without complaining. This is certainly something that has been missing for many many years and it now seems like Antić has fixed the atmosphere as well.
I think with ponašanje he simply means to be respectful to the opponents and referees, on and off the pitch. Also to not play dirty (with brutality or faking fouls).
 

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Discussion Starter #8
That as well, especially since he described Henrik Larsson as the perfect example of that today in the press-conference.
 

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Well in my opinion that kind of behaviour (being overly aggressive and constantly arguing with referees) earned us a bad image in recent years. Antic is completly rihght, that this doesnt get us anywhere.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Players shouldn't really waste energy on the referee's anyways, but everyone who's played football or still plays knows that it comes naturally.
 

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IMO you can learn to swallow that anger and just complain if its really necessary. What I meant also is more that typical Serbian complex, that all referees are against us. Well no wonder they are, if you constantly complain.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
It comes natural for some individuals and I can agree that serbs are usually dumbasses when it comes to this, then again, sometimes it's tough and it all depends on how you actually are. I've got one yellow card during all my life playing football, but I guess I learned a lot from the swedes.

Anyways, it's good that they're behaving, if only we could get Nikola Žigić to stop recieving all these cards..
 

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We only got 2 yellows against Romania. I think that says a lot considering the game, the pressure, the physicality of it. Shows Antic has made the players much more disciplined.
 

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We as a race are really hot headed, and when something goes against us we straight away snap. When i played football my Italian coach taught us to suck up to the referee by every now and again saying things like "good call" or "well done" to make him lean towards our side, and it works that we should be doing instead of swearing at the ref and asking him to book other players.
 

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It would have been nice if he'd been appointed ahead of Djukic in the first place, he could have lead a successful Olympic campaign and maybe had better momentum going into Paris

ps thanks for the translation Zoric, how long did it take you to learn Spanish? I always thought of Kacar as the 'Serbian Hierro"
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I've actually been reading a lot of spanish and learned some stuff along the way by supporting Atlético. I've also got a friend of mine who lives in the Canary Islands and he usually helps me out a bit when I don't understand something.

Using Google Translator can be a good way of actually learning spanish words, this is how I started getting interested in the language as a whole and I think I might start learning it in a proper way.
 

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it shows a lot about the coach and the atmosphere in the team when all the players can't wait to train together and see each other. The ambience in the team was our main problem and one of the reason of our past failure. It was the main reason we lost against Holland 6-1 in euro 2000, it really became an individual game where the defenders didn't care if the team would concede a goal as long as the goals weren't scored on their side and take the blame. Props to Antic for selecting a good squad not just for their quality but also for the team spirit and avoiding those type of players who only seek personal fame.
 

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I was completely for the sacking of Djukic in favor of Antic. Not only is Antic more experienced, but he has such a winning attitude and he seems to really enjoy what he's doing. To me Djukic always seemed as if he was doing a job, and was never really optimistic. The thing I like about Antic is that he also wants to create a team for us fans, so he really understands the full spectrum of the sport, whereas Djukic seemed a lot more narrow minded.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Young coaches are usually stubborn and defensive, they don't like to experiment all too much and want to be safe whereas more experienced and knowledgeable coaches know what errors they make and then fix them in the next game.
 

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Djukic just proved that Partizan can dominate the Superliga without having a great coach. Also his success with our U21, despite being a great achievement - I doubt that it was because of Djukic. We simply had a great generation there.
 
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