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Adzic continues to lead Montenegro

NEWS REPORT: After Dragan Adzic himself had already said that he would step down as head coach of Montenegro’s women’s national team, it is now all different: Adzic confirmed that he will stay

Photo: Stephane Pillaud

Dragan Adzic remains the head coach of Montenegro’s women’s national team until the 2020 Olympic Games.

This decision was confirmed by the federation’s new board and its new president Zoran Radojicic who has replaced replaced Predrag Boskovic. Boskovic is one two candidates for the position of EHF Vice President at the upcoming elections in November.

Originally Adzic had taken the full responsibility for Montenegro’s group phase exit at the 2016 Olympic Games and announced that he would resign. However, a month and a half later, he changed his mind and accepted the call of the Montenegrin handball federation and will continue to lead the women’s team, a job that will start in earnest soon at the Women’s EHF EURO 2016 in Sweden this December.

“I have no regrets about my decision to resign. But after that decision became public in Rio, some things happened. After the analysis and guidance that I gave to the federation, I said that I’m ready to offer my help,” said Adzic.

“Even if we had won gold in Rio, a very difficult period would be ahead of us. My plan was approved by the federation’s board, as well as by the new president. In front of me is the biggest challenge in my career and I was not ready to retire now,” Adzic said.

Popovic becomes Adzic’s assistant

For the past few weeks Bojana Popovic had been the national team’s interim coach. The six-time EHF Champions League winner will now become Adzic’s assistant coach. It is same role she also takes on at Buducnost, the 2015 winners of the Women’s EHF Champions League.

“I'm glad that Bojana accepted to be with me. Otherwise, I would not be with the national team,” Adzic said.

New team, new goals

Adzic named the squad for the upcoming national team week during which Montenegro will play two friendly games against FYR Macedonia.

Compared to the Rio 2016 squad, there are seven players missing. Popovic’s comeback was short-lived and Radmila Petrovic decided to retire from international handball. At the same time Adzic did not nominate Marija Jovanovic, Jovanka Radicevic, Katarina Bulatovic, Andjela Bulatovic and Sonja Bajraktarovic.

“About 99 percent of the players on the list for the national team week will go to (the EHF EURO in) Sweden. However, all others are not definitely out,” said Adzic.

“However, considering that the goal is Tokyo 2020, we want to check the players who are now on the list.

“I have an obligation and a desire to talk to all the players who have made an immeasurable contribution to the Montenegrin national team, and they will decide whether they will continue to play or not. I repeat, nobody is written off, but the focus will be on those players that see themselves in the team until the end of the Olympic cycle,” Adzic concluded.

The team for national team week and friendly games against FYR Macedonia

Goalkeepers: Marina Rajcic (Metz, France), Ljubica Nenezic (Kispest, Hungary), Anastasija Babovic (Buducnost)

Wings: Majda Mehmedović (CSM Bucuresti, Romania), Ivona Pavicevic (Buducnost), Itana Grbic (Buducnost), Dijana Ujkic (Buducnost), Sanja Premovic (Lublin, Poland)

Line players: Suzana Lazović (Buducnost), Ema Ramusovic (Buducnost), Bobana Klikovac (DVSC Korvex, Hungary)

Backcourt players: Milena Raicevic (Buducnost), Djurdjina Jaukovic (Buducnost), Jelena Despotovic (DVSC Korvex, Hungary), Ivana Bozovic (CSM Ploiesti, Romania), Vanesa Agovic (Buducnost), Djurdjina Malovic (Buducnost), Andrea Klikovac (Vardar, FYR Macedonia), Jasna Toskovic (Roman, Romania)




written by Saša Jončić / ts