Results for August 31 – September 2, 2012
NK LOKOMOTIVA 1 – 3 GNK DINAMO ZAGREB
Dinamo faced their stadium co-tenants Saturday and defeated them 3-1 in front of a mere 1,000 fans.
Early goals by Ante Rukavina and Domagoj Vida and another penalty by Sammir took care of their neighbors with no problem. Lokomotiva put in a penalty kick of their own in the 33rd minute to avoid the shutout.
Dinamo coach Ante Čačić was pleased with the win and said it was not easy for a team to play a game such as this right after the emotional match against Maribor in Slovenia. Between that and the learning of their opponents in the group stage of the Champions League, there was a lot on the player’s minds.
“For us, this was a very important game in which we wanted to take all three points. It is not easy to play a game after the emotional discharge after entry into the Champions League, and the fact that we controlled the match, created more chances and deserved to win, in the end I am delighted,” Čačić said.
Fatos Beqiraj started up top for the modri, as Duje Čop injured his hamstring in during the pre match arm ups. Cop has been impressive on the field this year, scoring in several games for Dinamo, including in the Champions League qualifiers.
Rukavina’s goal came in the 16th minute to begin the scoring for Dinamo. Beqiraj sent a through-ball the split the Lokomotiva defense and left Rukavina in the clear to send the ball into the goal.
“We played a match tonight that we deservedly won. Every game is tough, but if you relax before each game, you will find some of your inner motivation. It is our job and you have to make the most out of yourself. We were very good on the field and achieved a victory,” Rukavina said after the match.
At the restart of play, Rukavina immediately tried to return the the favor to Beqiraj and sent a through ball to his teammate who just missed wide of the goal.
Luis Ibañez sent in a beautiful free kick in the 21st minute that allowed Vida to get his head on and redirect to the back of the net. The Croatian international has been having a career season with Dinamo, scoring four league and Champions League goals this year so far as a defender.
Big Joe Simunić started at center back during the game, but conceded a penalty in the 33rd minute. A reckless tackle from behind led to Andrej Kramarić stepping up to the penalty spot. Kramarić fooled keeper Ivan Kelava with a smooth chip that sent the keeper diving to the right and the ball slowly floating in to make the score 2-1 heading into the break.
Lokosi midfielder Domagoj Antolić nearly curled one in as the second half began and beat Kelava but only found the woodwork instead of the net.
Lokomotiva have proven time and time again this season thus far to be a competitive team, but they couldn’t get past the strength of Dinamo.
Dinamo’s would-be third goal of the match, which was put in by a 20 yard blast of a free kick by El Lucho, was disallowed to to goalkeeper interference by Vida. Vida seemingly knocked down the visiting keeper as the ball was entering the net, nullifying the score.
It would not be a Dinamo game this year without the modri being awarded a penalty kick. Sammir was knocked down in the box and Dinamo was awarded their seventh penalty of the season. Sammir took the kick himself and put in his leading eighth league-goal of the season to seal the win.
Saturday marked history for the BBB. For the first time since 1986, the supporters group moved from their traditional section in the north stands and relocated to the grandstands in the west. They chose to sit in the east stands, but when Lokomotiva hosts matches at Maksimir as they did this week, they do not use the east stands, so they sat in the west with the rest of the fans.
Dinamo was also without several players. New signings of Bryan Carrasco, Alen Halilović, and former Lokomotiva players Marcelo Borzović and Dinko Trebotić. They will be available for their next match. Jerko Leko was also left off the squad after falling out of favor of Čačić.
Lokomotiva: Lovrić – Samateh, Barbarić, Mesarić, Musa – Mrzljak, Boras (od 71. Šitum), Pavičić (od 82. Lovrić), Antolić, Bručić (od 79. Pjaca) – Kramarić
Dinamo: Kelava – Vrsaljko, Vida (od 88. Puljić), Šimunić, Pivarić – Calello, Alispahić – Ibanez, Sammir, Rukavina (od 75. Ademi) – Beqiraj (od 57. Krstanović)
HNK RIJEKA 1 – 0 HNK HAJDUK SPLIT
Rijeka finally won their first home match at Kantrida as they shut out their Adriatic rivals, Hajduk Split, in controversial fashion.
Wet conditions did not keep the 7,000 fans from enjoying their team play.
Hajduk has been struggling as of late, and have yet to win a game without their wunderscorer Ante Vukusić. Vukusić joined Italy’s Serie A team Pescara last week and Hajduk have surly missed him, gaining only one point since his leaving.
Rijeka came out of the gates ready for a battle. They pressured early and showed Hajduk that maybe they are the team everyone expected them to be this year. The boys from Split kept the offensive attacks under control, though they had a scare early on when Rijeka’s Leon Benko put the ball just over the crossbar after heading it to the ground and tried to bounce it on target.
Hajduk had their chances as well in the first half. Rijeka keeper, Robert Lisjak, kept the game scoreless on a nice save on a bullet shot by 19-year-old Ivo Valentinoo Tomaš. The 19 year old and product of the Hajduk youth academy has now made three appearances with the club and is showing a bit of promise.
Even in with the water-logged field, Goran Blažević was also determined to keep the match scoreless. A point blank shot by Rijeka was saved with the sure hands of Blažević, and frustration began for the home side.
Hajduk’s Mirko Oremuš just missed breaking the deadlock tie when his bending shot beat the keeper but was denied by the goalpost. Both clubs had chance after chance, but could not capitalize on anything.
An exciting game turned controversial quickly in the 80th minute. Hajduk defender Goran Jozinović and Rijeka forward Goran Mujanović were racing toward a ball the was entering the Hajduk penalty area when Jozinović slid tackled Mujanovć to the ground. The referee immediately pointed to the spot, awarding Rijeka the game-deciding penalty, but at closer look, Mujanović was clearly tackled outside of the penalty area and fell into the 18 yard box after being tackled.
“I do not know what to say… The penalty just was not there. I can not say that Rijeka was not better, but if the penalty was not given, well then…,” Hajduk coach Mišo Krsticević was heard telling Oremuć after the penalty.
The derby was decided on a miss-call, but Rijeka came out the beneficiaries of the call and were able to defeat the mighty Hajduk for their first home-win of the season. Kršticević refused to answer any questions and refused to go to the press conference after the match.
“We have not solved the game in the first half. It could have been 3:0 or 3:1 for us. Split were on their knees and began to panic. In the end we deserved to win. I listened to the criticism and changed the system (of the team). By now, I was very optimistic and we played very opened. But this team has to mature. If are aware that we are only at the beginning and that we still have work to do to improve the team, but today we have succeeded.” – Rijeka coach Elvis Scoria
An Uproar has begun over the penalty decision during the match. Officials are worried over fan retaliation in upcoming matches and several requests have been sent to Hajduk to withdraw from the league. Such drastic measures surly are not necessary, but what can the league and club to to fix the situation and avoid future conflicts such as this one?
Rijeka: Lisjak – Datković, Knežević, Neretljak – Mujanović, Kreilach, Brezovec, Weitzer, Čaval – Mutombo, Benko
Hajduk: Blažević – Vršajević, Milović, Maloča, Jozinović – Milić, Radošević – Oremuš, Vuković, Caktaš – Tomaš
NK OSIJEK 1 – 2 NK SLAVEN BELUPO
photo: http://prvaliga.tportal.hr/ /http://tribina.tportal.hr
Slaven Belupo continue to keep pace with the top of the table as the defeated Osijek in the Garden City on Sunday 2-1.
Slaven remain only one point behind Dinamo Zagreb, yet the sit six points ahead of third place RNK Split, and seven points ahead of fourth place teams Hajduk and Lokomotiva.
Osijek as handed their first loss of the season, which just happened to coincide with their coach, Stakno Mršić’s, 400th game with his club.
Mateas Delić stunned the crowd with his opening goal. In the 29th minute, Delić received the ball and let it fly from 30 yards out to put Slaven ahead.
Prior to the match, Slaven coach Roy Ferenčina was confident that even though Osijek was the only undefeated team left other than Dinamo, his team would take all three points.
“Osijek remained undefeated in the last round at Hajduk Split, which indicates that this is a quality team that can be a surprise in the league, but we’re going to win and do not think about defeat. We have enough confidence for the match in Osijek and we are in good shape and because are optimistic because of this,” Ferenčina said.
Osijek showed resilience in the second half and put a lot more pressure on the Slaven side and showed them that they are more than a team that can surprise the league. The home side forced the Slaven keeper to be called upon several times to make saves and forced their defense to make mistakes.
A surprising penalty was awarded to the home team after a corner kick was delivered into the box. A mysterious handball was called and Osijek was able to tie the match at 1-1.
It didn’t take long for Slaven to go back ahead as Davor Vugrenec scored his 131st career goal after he headed the ball home from a cross from the wing to win the game 2-1. The 37 year old may have had just enough life left in him to be signed my Slaven this year, and has seen playing time one three occasions this season, scoring twice.
Slaven boosted their defensive lineup this week with the signing of 27-year-old Bosnian, Mario Barić. Barić most recently played on Belgium first league side Gent, and before that playing in Karlovac until 2010.
NK ZADAR 1 – 1 NK ISTRA 1961
Istra was denied their fourth win in a row when Zadar tied the game late in stoppage time to escape with one point in front of a crowd of 600.
The game started and ended with a bang, but had little in between the action. Istrian midfielder Alen Pamić opened the game up right with a quick goal in the eighth minute. The coach’s son scored his first goal of the season to put his team in the lead and it looked as if that was all that was needed to keep Zadar winless and at the bottom of the table.
Nearly 80 minutes later, Zadar midfielder Antonio Mršić miraculously tied the game in the second minute of stoppage time. This is Zadar’s fourth draw of the season, and are now four points a head of Zagreb who sit at the bottom of the table with zero points.
Istra dominated the first half and gave their opponents no space or time to work with. They pressured hard and controlled the possession in the half.
The second half was much of the same. Midfielder Sandi Križman was given a golden opportunity to score when he drew the Zadar keeper, Tomo Gluić, off his line and missed the empty net.
Zadar tied it up lat in stoppage time when Mrsić took a free kick and drove the ball into the net for the draw.
“This time I’m sad and angry. This season will be tough, but we just have to win games like that. What we’ve managed to miss it, and it is a mystery. We were better than Zadar, no doubt about it.” – Igor Pamić, Istra coach
Zadar: Gluić, Jerbić, Prahić, Bilen (od 80. Heister), Bilaver, Banović (od 45. Begonja), Župan, Mršić, Vasilj, Tokić (od 45. Ivančić), Jolić
Istra 1961: Prskalo, Sušić, Čagalj, Budicin, Milić, Blagojević, Jugović, Ottochian (od 89. Prelčec), Pamić (od 65. Jerković), Havojić (od 55. Bačelić-Grgić), Križman
NK ZAGREB 0 – 1 HNK CIBALIA
Cibalia earned their first win of the season by defeating Zagreb 1-0 at Kranjčevićeva on Friday. Zagreb on the other hand, remain winless and have lost their seventh straight game this season. Is it too late for the Poets to turn their season around, or will they be in the Druga Liga next season?
Cibalia is having a rough season themselves. With their first win, they are only five points out of last place and remain in the bottom three. Their office staff is having a difficult time running the team, owing various debts to players and other teams and are lucky to even be allowed to still play in the league. With several players leaving the club, they have had to replace many of them with junior players, all under the age of 20. Their veteran, Mario Lučić is struggling with with disciplinary problems and is not setting a good example for the young members of the club.
The club in the past has done well, finishing near the top on several occasions in the HNL, but now finds itself struggling to exit the bottom three. Will this win be what turns them around this season? Probably not. In the month of September, they must face Lokomotiva, Osijek, and Rijeka, as well as a cup match. Their first three matches in October consist of matches against Slaven, Hajduk, then Dinamo. It seems that they could be destined to finish at the bottom.
This is soccer after all, so who knows. Many things could happen. Players could shape up and management could change. It is far too early to write any team’s obituary now, but life is tough at the bottom of the Prva Liga table.
Cibalia should thank Frane Vitaić for scoring the winning goal against Zagreb, keeping the team’s head just above water. It was a team effort though, so credit is due to all of them.
NK Zagreb anxiously await their first win of the season, if anything, just to salvage some respect. They have recently tried to bulk up their defense with the signing of veteran Bosnian defender, Safet Nadarević. Can the aging defender help stop the bleeding in Zagreb? The Poets hope so.
Announced on Monday, NK Zagreb coach has had enough after seven defeats in the first seven matches of the season and has resigned. Dražen Besek left the club today and will be replaced by former Hajduk Split player and coach, Luka Bonačić. Bonačić also coached Slaven Belupo in the past as well as Rijeka and Varteks.
RNK SPLIT 1 – 0 NK INTER ZAPREŠIĆ
Split continue to be a force in the league and beat Inter Zaprešić on Saturday in Split with a score of 1-0.
Inter has never beaten RNK Split, dating back to their first meeting with each other on October 3, 1998, when both teams met in the Druga Liga. In their six meetings with each other, Split has won five times and drew once, with the score being 1-1. That marked the only goal Inter has been able to score on Split in any of their meetings.
A lone goal by Mate Pehar was all it took to break down Inter and for one more week, leaving them with one win in this season. They remain in ninth place on the table, five points ahead of NK Zagreb, who sit in last place with zero points.
Shortly after the goal, Inter went down to 10 men when Ivan Herceg was sent off with a straight red card, making it easier for Split to come out victorious.