By Mohammad Shahnawaz
Zavisa Milosavljevic spoke exclusively to Footballpakistan.com and expressed his joy over winning the Kyrgyzstan Super Cup in his first competitive game since taking over FC Dordoi Bishkek in the winter.
Dordoi finished 2nd behind the champions Ala Osh and also lost in the cup in the last season but started the new season with a bang under Zavisa’s management having had extensive preparations with a training camp in Turkey and some key new signings that include Muhammad Adil and Kaleemullah from Pakistan.
“The boys have taken well to the new system and methods and played very well, it was a team effort,” commented Zavisa after his side beat the AFC Cup participants in an emphatic 3-0 win.
Remarking on his new signings and the integration into the squad, the Serbian tactician said the super cup was a good game but the side get better with time once they play more matches together. Regarding Adil and Kaleemullah, Zavisa said they boys have potential to do well at the club and beyond and they realise that.
“I worked closely with them for nearly 2 years and know what they are capable of and that’s why they are here,” claimed the Serb.
It is widely accepted in Pakistan now that Adil and Kaleem won’t be returning to KRL and will try to play their football in Europe or another league in the region.
Zavisa was quick to point out that their main aim is the league title which they will challenge for and his team will get better with time as the players adapt to conditions, style of play and different methods. Alay Osh surprised the Bishkek giants when they won the league title by 3 points and have gone on to play in the AFC Cup group stages after beating Shabab Al Dhahiriya via play-offs.
Talking about his time as Pakistan coach, Zavisa said he had built the core the team over 20 months when he was in-charge of the team. He had an extensive program with the U22s with tours to Palestine, Thailand, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Sri-Lanka but despite failing to qualify for the AFC U22 Championship, he left a good crop of players behind him.
Zavisa was quick to add that he was pleased to see Shamlan doing a good job with the team and utilising the talent that he had worked with. However when informed that Shamlan has decided to ignore the senior players and inject youngsters into the 1st team as a mean to give them exposure, Zavisa argued; “The National team isn’t a place to develop players, it is where you pick the best players and try to qualify for events and go for wins, developing players is the jobs of the league clubs and coaches, especially at youth team level”.
It is hard to disagree with Zavisa’s argument because that is exactly what he tried doing when he was in charge and was unlucky not to qualify for AFC Challenge Cup after 2 narrow defeats against Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.
And now FC Dordoi, the 8 time Kyrgyz Champions and 2 time AFC President Cup winners, made a winning start to their league campaign with a dominating 5-0 win over Manas FC with Kaleemullah scoring one and Adil scoring a brace. Two games, two wins and a trophy, football looks easy for Zavisa in Bishkek.