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Superliga action returns to Marakana

Crvena zvezda begin defence of Superliga title on Friday evening at Rajko Mitić Stadium. New season kicks off with newly promoted Dinamo Vranje arriving to Belgrade to face the champions.
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Head Coach Vladan Milojević spoke ahead of this important match, heaping praise on last season's Prva liga Srbije winners.
“Dinamo were dominant in the second tier last term so they deserved to compete with Serbia’s best clubs. Dinamo’s Head Coach Dragan Antić is a credit to the club after improving them on every level. They will be motivated for this game, but so will we.”
 
Milojević wouldn’t reveal his starting eleven, but hinted at probable rotations.
“We’ve got many players to pick from and I couldn’t be happier with their efforts in training. We will have to be wise in the way we use our squad. Some players aren’t fully match fit yet, some need to be eased in, some need to be kept fresh, so I will have a few decisions to make. We’ve got another important match in Europe on Tuesday, but it doesn’t give us the right to relax in league matches, especially with this being our first game. We want a strong start.”
 
Zvezda left it rather late in the game to open the scoring against Spartaks on Tuesday and Milojević reiterated the stance that no team is easy to break down if they are well-organized and set on playing defensively.
“Sometimes you score early from the first chance you create and it gets a bit easier. Sometimes, as it was on Tuesday, you just have to keep calm, patient and concentrated. It’s something we’ve been watching this summer in the World Cup. Many teams were very tough to beat and the teams who were the most patient were the teams who got good results. It’s not necessarily pretty to watch, but it’s just how football is these days.”
 
To be able to penetrate stubborn defences, you could always use an extra striker and Zvezda will bring in another if the price is right.
“We’re working on it because we could use another option after the departure of Aleksandar Pešić. We’ve had some players offered to us, but they didn’t quite suit us. We won’t be signing players just for the sake of it. We are looking for players who could really improve the team. Our Director of Football Mitar Mrkela is working on it and I’ve got a lot of confidence in him.”
 
Vladan Milojević says it will take some time to get the best out of players.
“It’s natural. We’ve got some players in who didn’t play much at their previous clubs last season, so they need some time to get into real form. They’ve got quality, but you also need match practice to be able to show your quality in competitive matches. I will give chances to everyone, but it crucial that everyone keeps working hard.”

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