And finally the left side of our defense line was not looking like a corridor for pedestrians.
Because there was our diligent, hard-working Ćirković...
...and the talented, reliable Bandalovski, who is useful on both the left and the right side and is able to play over his entire side, from the defense to the midfield, a typical "wildcard player".
Why, why, why must such players be bench warmers?!... Bandalovski should be the base of the defense line, being in the starting 11 at every game. Other trainers would fall over themselves to get such a defender, while over here he is stuck in the second team. And how many other players are there, who, like him, are talented but can barely make it to the A-team, or sometimes even to the bench, God damn it.
So, we walked out to the field and already in the 2nd minute Ćirković headed the ball to the goal line after a corner kick. Pity it was too wide. Two minutes later Saša Ilić got the ball in the middle. He shot from 16 metres. It was dangerous, the goalkeeper had a great save.
If I wanted to be mean now, I’d say, there it is, Babović is out of the team, and Saša Ilić immediately shows he still has a lot reserved.
Then in the 6th minute Aboubakar came up on the left side and kicked the ball to Saša Ilić. The Captain passed it ahead to Andrija Živković in the middle. The young world champion got it and walked right into the net with it. GOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAL! 1:0!!!
In the first 15 minutes Partizan dominated. OFK could barely get to our half, and even that didn’t last too long. The pace got slower, but we kept the game under control. OFK just assisted and they were busy mostly with keeping the ball as far from their goalmouth as possible.
In the 25th minute Andrija Živković was dribbling on the right side, then passed it to Brašanac in the middle. Brašanac headed it to the goal line, the goalkeeper caught it.
In the 30th minute OFK got a corner kick. Ješić shot, Partizan-defenders headed it out, right in front of Avramovski. The Macedonian player kicked into the air instead of the ball, it was painful to see. Finally the ball rolled out of the line. Goal-kick.
In the 32nd minute we got a free kick, approx. 25-28 metres from the goal line. Andrija Živković stood behind the ball. He shot, Balažic jumped up to head it, but Savić was quicker. It ended in a corner kick.
In the 35th minute a huge chance was missed out. Andrija Živković dribbled himself up on the right, then after this great solo he shot. He missed with barely a few centimetres.
A minute later Andrija Živković ran up with the ball on the right side. He passed it out to Vulićević, who kicked it to the middle. There Šaponjić rose up to the skies and flawlessly headed it into the net. GOOOOAAAAAAAAL, wonderful, perfect goal!!! 2:0!!!
There was a free kick left in the last minute before the end of the first half, 22 metres from the goal line. Andrija Živković kicked, the ball hit the wall.
The second half started with Subašić hitting Ćirković in the face, it brought a small pause for the game. Then in the 52nd minute OFK made it to Partizan’s penalty area after a long time. They came up on the left, the first attempt was saved by Živko Živković
it almost looked like an action that ends in a penalty kick, also the ball seemed to roll out of the field for a moment, but the refere didn’t whistle
the ball dropped right in front of Ignjatijević, who shot from a sharp left angle. And scored. 2:1
Two minutes later we got a free kick. About 25 metres, right side. Andrija Živković stood behind the ball. He kicked it inside the penalty area, Ćirković headed it, but the referee whistled it off.
The match started to slow down. Partizan’s first-half-pace disappeared. OFK didn’t want to speed it up either. The game was going on mostly the midfield, then in the 61st minute Andrija Živković grabbed the ball some time in the depths, near Partizan’s penalty area. He run up, with great solo, passed it to Vulićević on the right. Vulićević headed towards the penalty area and passed it towards Šaponjić in the middle, but a defender blocked the attempt.
In the 67th minute Bandalovski gave a great pass to Brašanac. Brašanac ran up in the middle, shot, the goalkeeper pushed the ball out, ending the action in corner kick. The kick was headed out by OFK defenders, in front of Trujić. Trujić shot, from about 16 metres, but it was too high.
Question of today’s game: why did Brašanac have to come off in the 75th minute?... He wasn’t injured, he was the heart and soul of the midfield. Why, why, why?...
In the 78th minute Jevtović sent a distant shot to the goal, but the ball flew out above the crossbar.
Then in the 80th minute Gojkov passed to Ignjatijević. Ignjatijević attacked, it was dangerous, but we had Živko Živković at the goal line, who can save much more dangerous attempts as well. He could demonstrate his skills 3 minutes later, when Simić ran up to the goalmouth with two Partizan-defenders in his back. Simić shot, Živko Živković saved with his leg.
At the very end, in the 90+1st minute Trujić was kicked to the ground inside the penalty area, but the referee didn’t whistle.
Venue: Partizan Stadion, Belgrade
Number of spectators: 4000
Referee: Ilija Brdar (assistants: Uroš Stojković, Bojan Stanojević - 4th assistant: Vukan Gordić - goal line assistants: Vlado Glođović, Novak Simović)
FK Partizan: Ž. Živković - Vulićević, Balažic, Ćirković, Bandalovski - Jevtović, Brašanac (Lukić, 73.) - A. Živković, S. Ilić (Ninković, 84.), Aboubakar (Trujić, 55.) - Šaponjić
Head coach: Zoran Milinković
OFK Beograd: Čupić - Ješić, Planić, Savić, Ignjatijević - Damjanović, Stjepanović (Gojkov, 40.) - Jovanović, Avramovski (Rajevac, 46.), Liščević - Subašić (Simić, 74.)
Head coach: Dragoljub Bekvalac
Goal scorers: A. Živković (6.), Šaponjić (36.), Ignjatijević (52.)
Yellow card: Planić (42.), Bandalovski (54.), Liščević (75.), Savić (81.)
I’ll update the post with the league table later, on Sunday there will be more matches of this round.
Update: current championship standings.
1. Crvena Zvezda 20 points
2. Javor 16 points
3. Partizan 15 points
4. Radnički Niš 13 points
5. Vojvodina 13 points
6. Novi Pazar 12 points
7. Čukarički 11 points
8. Borac 11 points
9. FK Voždovac 9 points
10. Metalac 9 points
11. Spartak Zlatibor Voda 9 points
12. Rad 8 points
13. Mladost 8 points
14. OFK Beograd 6 points
15. Surdulica 6 points
16. Jagodina 3 points
(Photos: Facebook/Fudbalski klub Partizan)