Those who regularly read this blog, know which player(s) I’m talking about. Those who don’t... well, never mind.
The game started with a small celebration. Branko Vućićević, Partizan’s treasurer will get retired on 1st September, the club said farewell to him now.
Afterwards it seemed this time the "full court press in the first 20 minutes"-tactics will bring their reward. Our first attempt came in the 3rd minute - the ball was crossed from left, Bojinov headed it, "zicer", 1:0.
The next attempt came around the 23rd minute. In between the two teams were running around, it seemed Rad attacked a little bit more, but there were no actual attempts on either sides. Even at this point the game was tensed, players kicked into each other a lot. Everton got a yellow card already in the 18th minute.
At games like this Everton reveals his jerk side (as well as how useless he can be). While Leonardo is totally neurotic who yells more than actually playing football.
Then in the 23rd minute, at our second attempt came another "zicer". Corner kick, Milenković headed it, 2:0.
In the 32nd minute hell broke loose. Leonardo got the ball at Rad’s penalty area line, he wanted to attack, but clashed with a Rad-defender inside the penalty area. The referee didn’t whistle for penalty kick.
ArenaSport replayed it in slow motion at least 4 times from more angles, from frame to frame. Honestly, even I couldn’t say whether it was really a penalty or not. From one angle it seemed that the defender stopped Leonardo with a bodycheck, so it was an offensive foul. From another it seemed that Leonardo ran into the innocent defender and fell on the ground. The devil is always in the details...
To cut it short, referee Simović did not point at the penalty mark, but waved "go ahead". Yet the game did not go ahead, because everyone started to yell. Partizan-players complained for penalty kick, surrounding the referee, later the 4th official as well.
Then Marko Nikolić also joined the discussion, and that was a big mistake. There’s no info about what he said to the referee (or what he didn’t), nevertheless the referee showed him the red card. Marko Nikolić had to leave the pitch.
Other than these there were two free kick, one for us in the 40th minute, one for Rad in the 43rd. Both missed. There were two nervous, tensed teams as well, kicking mostly each other instead of the ball.
Rad’s goalkeeper had his first actual save in the second half, when Bojinov shot in the 47th minute. (It was far not that dangerous though.) A minute later Bates was excluded from the game, after kicking off Everton. He already had a yellow card, he got his second one and had to leave the pitch. Free kick for Partizan. Leonardo stood behind the ball, he shot, the goalkeeper was just watching in amazement, 3:0.
Then in the 50th minute Uroš Đurđević (signed just a few days ago) debuted, substituting Bojinov.
At his first touch with the ball he ran up, shot, but the goalkeeper saved.
Rad’s biggest chance came - and was missed out - in the 55th minute.
Other than this they didn’t actually have any other chance...
Mladenović got a great pass, ran up, leaving Partizan-defenders behind. He arrived at our penalty area all alone, all doors and windows were wide open, Mladenović shot... and missed. It was too wide with just a few centimetres. Then Đurđević had two attempts, but the goalkeeper saved them.
I don’t say we played well, but at least we did it now without that nerve-racking minimalist style we practiced at the previous games. The match was tensed, nervous, maybe that’s why there was not that much idle time. We attacked, Rad got stuck at their penalty area for a while.
It was already the 79th minute, Partizan got 4 corner kicks in a row. Finally, after the 4th the ball was dropping around the penalty area like a pinball, then it dropped into the box from Radović. Literally. One very awkward goal. But it was inside the box. 4:0
Rad had one more very weak try in the 85th minute, then Stevanović shot once in the 88th, but it was too wide.
Venue: Partizan stadion, Belgrade
Number of spectators: 4000
Official: Novak Simović (assistants: Matija Olajos-Nagy, Attila Harmat - 4th official: Nemanja Gajdobranski)
FK Partizan: Kljajić, Vulićević, Balažic, Milenković, Miletić, Everton, Marjanović, Leonardo, Mihajlović (Janković, 70.), Radović (Stevanović, 83.), Bojinov (Đurđević, 49.)
Head coach: Marko Nikolić
FK Rad: Dejanović, Obradović, Ćulum, Đenić (Petković, 45.), Lutovac, Maraš, Mladenović, Jovanović, Bates, Veselinović (Vico, 51.), Stanojević (Petrović, 61.)
Head coach: Nebojša Petrović
Goal scorers: Bojinov (3.), Milenković (23.), Leonardo (49.), Radović (79.)
Yellow cards: Everton (18.), Ćulum (21.), Milenković (27.), Marjanović (37.), Bates (38.), Veselinović (41.), Đurđević (56.), Jovanović (56.)
Red card: Marko Nikolić (34.) - complaining,. Bates (48.) - second yellow card
League table will be brought tomorrow.
Update: current championship standings
1. CZ 19 points
2. Vojvodina 16 points
3. Metalac 13 points
4. Radnički Niš 13 points
5. Spartak Subotica 12 points
6. FK Voždovac 11 points
7. FK Partizan 10 points
8. Napredak 9 points
9. Mladost 9 points
10. Rad 9 points
11. Novi Pazar 7 points
12. Radnik 6 points
13. FK Javor 6 points
14. Čukarički 5 points
15. Borac 5 points
16. OFK Bačka 4 points