Maybe one more thing to know about this game is that our starting eleven didn’t contain any striker. We played in 5-5-0.
I have never seen anything like this, ever. Bojinov was on the bench, Vlahović was on the bench, Fofana disappeared.
Oh, I got it now. Only Partizan-fans were banned out of the stadium.
But cheers up. We walked out to the field and this spectacular nothing (aka quarterfinal) could start.
Radnički got a corner kick right in the first minute. Šaranov punched the ball out. Later Todorović had a try, but the ball flew out of the field above the crossbar.
We had our first attempt that is worth to mention in the 10th minute. Someone (either Kosović or Mihajlović) shot, it was too high.
In the 14th minute Radnički had another attempt. For our great luck the ball rolled out just a bit through the baseline, but referee Mažić saw it and whistled the action off.
It was an "all doors and windows open"-situation, had Mažić not whistled it off, it would have been one brutal goal for the guests.
Four minutes later Mihajlović got a pass on the left side. Radnički-defenders waved for offside, but the referee didn’t whistle. Mihajlović wasted no time, he shot and scored. 1:0
After the goal there had been a lot of analyzing about whether it was offside or not. ArenaSport showed the scene in slow motion replay from more angles - well, to be honest, I wouldn’t bet on it. Neither on offside, nor on the opposite. From one angle it was offside, though just a few millimetres, but still offside. From another it was only same-line offside, which is still valid. Nevertheless after the goal the referee pointed at the half-line circle, validating the goal.
In the 22nd minute Bogdanović sent a shot to our goal. Šaranov caught it. In the 26th minute Marjanović had a cannon shot. Šaranov saved. Then came a corner kick for Radnički, Bulatović headed it, but it was too wide.
Two minutes later Kosović sent an excellent pass to Mihajlović. Flag up, finally goalkeeper Jovanović breathlessly ran out of the goalmouth and caught the ball.
In the 34th minute the guests got a free kick (right side, 25-27 metres from our goal line). Đuričković shot, Šaranov saved, but Radnički still possessed the ball. Finally Marjanović kicked it to the goal, but it was too weak to be dangerous.
In the 36th minute Mihajlović got a great pass again, now on the right side. He shot, it was too high.
The next action came in the 42nd minute. Now Aleksandar Jovanović got the ball. He ran up on the right side, crossed (if I could see well, Todorović was on the receiving end), the ball was headed to the goal line, Šaranov caught it.
During the game there were too many imprecise passes and crosses on both sides. Saša Ilić simply disappeared after the first 10-15 minutes, as if he wasn’t on the field at all. If he appeared, then it was only because a Radnički-player stole the ball and ran around him so simply and quickly as if he would be running around an advertising pillar instead of Partizan’s captain.
Then thankfully we could have some half-time rest.
In the second half, at the 49th minute Partizan got a penalty kick. Two Radnički-player got Stevanović into a "sandwich" inside their penalty area, and one of them touched the ball with his hand while wrestling.
Mihajlović stood behind the ball. He shot...
...and the goalkeeper of Radnički saved it! I must admit, he did it with fantastic reflexes. Then defenders quickly headed the ball out to corner kick.
In the 54th minute Apostolović came up on the left side. Gogoua was behind him, finally Šaranov threw himself into the way. We started a counter-attack. Bogosavac got the ball, he wanted to shoot, but he hit the goalkeeper.
Then came a few minutes of silence. The next action was in the 59th minute, but even then it was just Bogosavac passing to Lukić, but a defender was quicker than them and tackled.
In the 64th minute Radnički got a free kick. The cross arrived, a player jumped forward - and clashed with Šaranov. Partizan’s goalkeeper fell on the ground and stayed there for a while.
Then the only thing that brought some variety was to count which player was kicked to the ground. Finally in the 75th minute Bandalovski headed the ball to the goal after a corner kick, but it was too wide.
I swear I was about to fall asleep, when in the 80th minute Kosović passed to Stevanović. Stevanović lobbed the ball with an unusual movement
it’s not characteristic for him to have excellent, tricky movements. This was one of them. I didn’t want to believe my eyes.
above the goalkeeper, right into the net. 2:0
This was the surprise of the month. I don’t have a high opinion about Stevanović, I find him a grey, not too talented player, who is (theoretically) playing on an attacker position, though there’s one thing he just can’t do: scoring goals.
Well, now he did.
A minute later Radnički got a free kick, about 24-25 metres from our goal line, in the middle. Marjanović shot, Šaranov saved. Four minutes later again Marjanović had a try, now he headed it, Šaranov saved again.
In the semifinal we’ll play against Borac.
Venue: Partizan Stadion, Belgrade
Number of spectators: -
Referee: Milorad Mažić (assistants: Milovan Ristić, Dalibor Đurđević - 4th assistant: Milan Jeremić)
FK Partizan: Šaranov, Bandalovski, Gogoua, M. Jovanović, Bogosavac, Everton, Kosović, Lukić (Brašanac, 73.), A. Stevanović, Mihajlović (Golubović, 90+1.), S. Ilić (Vlahović, 87.)
Head coach: Ivan Tomić
Radnički Niš: Aleksandar C. Jovanović, Petrović, D. Bulatović, R. Bulatović, Tomić (Stevanović, 60.), Bogdanović (Krstić, 79.), Đuričković, Marjanović (Mrkić, 65.), Todorović, Aleksandar M. Jovanović, Apostolović
Head coach: Milan Rastavac
Goal scorers: Mihajlović (18.), Stevanović (80.)
Yellow card: M. Jovanović (30.), Everton (76.), Đuričković (86.)