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The Adriatic Adventure - FM11

FM 2011
Started on 26 September 2012 by tbendis
Latest Reply on 27 February 2013 by tbendis
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SEASONAL AWARDS - 30.VI.2015.
TOP GOALSCORER - D ?OP (25, CRO)), HAJDUK SPLIT, 21 GOALS
YOUNG PLAYER OF THE YEAR - P ZAJAC (21, SVK), HAJDUK SPLIT. RUNNER UP - GIANLUCA TACCONI (20, ITA), HAJDUK SPLIT. THIRD REINALDO PEREIRA (20, POR), ZADAR
PLAYER OF THE YEAR - D ?OP, HAJDUK SPLIT - 8 MoM AWARDS
TEAM OF THE YEAR:
M. Dela? (HAJ) - O. Kušnír (HAJ), M. Malo?a (HAJ), M. Jonji? (HAJ), M. Oremuš (HAJ), G. Tacconi (HAJ), Sammir (DZG), F. Mlinar (HAJ), I. Mili?evi? (HAJ), D. ?op (HAJ), P. Zajac (HAJ)

There were two non-Hajduk players featured in the Croatian First division awards ceremony, as an undefeated season was well reflected by the awards. And, neither of those players are playing in the Croatian first division anymore. Sammir, who made the Team of the Year, moved to Cruziero in the winter from Dinamo Zagreb for 5.5M €. And Reinaldo Pereira, who was the 2nd runner up to the Young player of the year award, was a Palermo player on loan at Zadar.

Peter Zajac and Duje ?op both picked up duplicate rewards. Zajac won the young player of the year award in 2013, while ?op won the top goalscorer award in 2013, and the Best Player of the year award in 2014. He becomes the fifth player to pick up doubles in either award, and the third to pick up doubles in both. No one has three.

Hajduk manager, Timmy Bendiš won all but one manager of the month awards last year, bringing his tally to 17.

TRANSFER SEASON
PSG and Hajduk Split are rumoured to be in deep talks regarding Ivan Mili?evi?. The Hajduk winger has been with the club since 2010, and with PSG looking to build up their interest, it is possible that Mili?evi? makes the move. The Hajduk manager stated: "Mili?evi? is an excellent player, but if he sees that it is time to move on from the club, I understand." The transfer fee is rumoured to be around 3 million €.
Although, Bendiš is already said to have a replacement, with Ton?i Kuko? coming back from his last loan spell with Zadar. Tomi?i? has been sent to Zadar to garner some more first team experience, but Kuko? looks like he is staying now. Bendiš said "Ton?i is a much more complete player now than he was three years ago."
Also, Hajduk could be in the market for free agent Ricardo Kaka. The Brazillian has many suitors, but the Champions League finalists could make a decisive move.
Also, Marin Ljubi?i?, former Hajduk player in 2010 before he was sold to Kladno has made the move back for free at the age of 27. He is said to be the ideal replacement for aging captain, Sr?an Andri?. Markanovi? looks to be going on loan to Solin.
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BENDIŠ REPLACES SLAVEN BILI? - 1.VII.2015
Slaven Bili? has been released from his Croatia post, and, with the choice between Zvonimir Soldo and Timmy Bendiš, the Croatian FA made it's decision to go South, and risk something for everything. In his first week, Bendiš has dropped four players to replace them, almost indiscrimantly with Hajduk players. Goran Jozinovi? is set to make his first international appearance, while Ognjen Vukojevi? is coming back to the international setup. Modri? is being replaced by Frano Mlinar in the first team. Jonji?, Malo?a and Buljat are all teaming up on Dejan Lovren for his first team spot, and it could only be a matter of time.

TRANSFER SEASON... CONTINUED
Ivan Strini? has joined HNK Hajduk Split after spending 6 years away from the club. Strini? left Hajduk for FC Red Bull Salzburg, way back in 2010, before moving to FK Red Star Beograd, in 2013. Bendiš has now signed him back for 2.9 M €
Danijel Subaši? has joined Liverpool for 875K €. The goalkeeper was 2nd or 3rd choice, depending on the day, and Liverpool are without a keeper.
Meanwhile, Jordan Ayew has joined Athletico Madrid for 2.6 M €, and Adam Hloušek has left Liverpool for Palermo for just under 15 M
17 year old Alte Andersen joins from Rosenborg for 3 million, while Kaka joins Udinese on a 2 year contract.
And finally, Serge Amouya, 14 has joined from IMF Clairefontaine for 220K €. At this rate, he could feature for Croatia at the age of 19, and even join the U20s for the U20 world cup.
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Well, fuck... what did you think would happen?
Well you'd think if those players had been the same players from the team that was the second best in Europe for the last 2 years then there is going to be bias lol. Anyway congratulations on getting the role at Croatia and unlucky in the final, you'll get it next season keep trying your still doing outstanding
2013-02-03 10:20#79762 AustralianFM : Well you'd think if those players had been the same players from the team that was the second best in Europe for the last 2 years then there is going to be bias lol. Anyway congratulations on getting the role at Croatia and unlucky in the final, you'll get it next season keep trying your still doing outstanding

I kind of took it to another level

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BENDIŠ FIGHTS BACK AT CRITICISM WITH WIN - INT'L FRIENDLY - 13.VIII.2013.g. - RIGA
LATVIA 1-2 CROATIA
Croatia manager, Timmy Bendiš, responded to heavy criticism of his short reign as the national team manager by fielding a Croatia squad made entirely of Hajduk players, making it the first time since Ajax was the official squad of the Netherlands that all 11 players came from the same team. Croatia, the ninth best team in the world fought back from a goal down (an own goal) to claim the friendly victory, 2-1.

The team, markedly similar to the team that lost to Lyon in the Champions League final, was as follows:

M DELA? - I STRINI?, J BULJAT (C), M JONJI?, G JOZINOVI? - O VUKOJEVI? - T KUKO?, F MLINAR, M OREMUŠ - D ?OP, A VUKUŠI?

Jozinovi?, unfortunately, took the first blame, as he simply missed the interception, and it bounced straight off him into the net. It wasn't a great goal, but it looked like Bendiš's time as Croatia manager would be short lived, as the half came and went without a goal.

But it was the towering centre forward, Duje ?op who saved Bendiš, as he scored a goal after a gorgeous cross from Ton?i Kuko? for the equalizer, before Frano Mlinar scored the goal of the match from 30 metres out, curling past the goalkeeper. Funnily enough, it was the hulking Kuko? who won the man of the match. The massive winger never tired against the defense, and constantly got dangerous balls into the centre of the pitch.

While Bendiš may have been critiqued for his amazingly one-sided approach, if he can pull this together, Hajduk, and Croatia could have a team to go down in history. Bendiš still needs to pull through against Malta, Kazakhstan and Belarus to qualify in first, after Bili? lost against third placed Scotland.

MEANWHILE... NOTICE THE GRAPHICS CHANGE
There will now be three banners for the story, as opposed to one. They are quite similar, but the original will not be used anymore
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REAL MADRID HOLD HAJDUK OFF TO GRAB ALL THREE POINTS - 1.X.2015
REAL MADRID C.F. 2-1 HNK HAJDUK SPLIT
Real Madrid got two red cards (R. Albiol '64, E. Garay '67) and conceded a penalty kick when leading only 2-1, but the missed penalty proved to be decisive, as Hajduk couldn't capitalize on the extra two men, Duje ?op scoring the Croatians' first goal 8 minutes before the first red card. It was, however, José Mourinho's first win over Bendiš, as he looks to lead his success further into the season, perhaps looking to dominate over Hajduk and take first place in Group C, however, while it may have been easier to hold Bendiš off for 90 minutes in front of 80 000 of his own fans, it will be much more difficult against a full strength Hajduk, one which has Matej Dela? on goal, Frano Mlinar in the middle, Peter Zajac up front and the crowds cheering in the background.

It didn't look promising for Hajduk, they started the game missing a whole bunch of players, including new signing, Ivan Strini?, and Higuain took advantage of some open space and rifled in a shot from 20 meters in the opening 20 minutes, scoring off Denis Krklec's post. Xabi Alonso opened his tab for the season from even further out, because if there is something Hajduk have proved (against Liverpool) they can defend all day long, but the long-shots are going to get them...

After Bendiš's half-time talk though, Hajduk rallied. They finished the game with a 20(8)-13(6) shots on target ration (Madrid - Hajduk) and just shy of 45% of possession, so it was completely with the run of the play when Duje ?op scored an easy header against Iker Casillas. What wasn't with the run of play were Real Madrid's two straight cards, both for professional tackles. Hajduk though, didn't manage to score the penalty given to them, and left for Split in 2nd place, with 3 points.

Real Madrid GD: +2, PTS: 6
Hajduk Split GD: 0, PTS: 3
Dortmund GD:0, PTS: 3
Metalist GD:-2, PTS: 0

Hajduk at least won against Dortmund last month, 1-0

CROATIA LOSE TO KAZAKHSTAN
An excellent Croatia couldn't break through the referees block, as the number 9 team in the world dropped to number 15, following a 3-2 loss away at Kazakhstan. Bendiš still has a home match against Belarus to take the first place spot so that he can avoid the playoff for the 2016 European Championships. Belarus and Croatia are now tied on 15 points
1
Unlucky tough result to take against Real Madrid but 2-1 against them with an understrength side away from home is still great
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METALIST HOLD HAJDUK IN 10 GOAL EPIC - 15.X.2015
METALIST KHARKIV 5-5 HNK HAJDUK SPLIT
Matej Jonji? took first blood from Hajduk, when he got sent off early on, but Bendiš grabbed at all the straws and made a superb fightback, before Metalist scored for the best match a neutral could watch.

It didn't start with Jonji? though... no, Metalist first got the defender mad, with Petro Kundenok's fabulous goal from thirty metres over an underperforming Matej Dela?. The (nonexistant, as I don't have Ukraine loaded) striker pulled the ball in well, before firing it into the top corner.

Then Jonji? got sent off for fouling the last man, 6 minutes before Papa Gueye headed home what looked like Metalist's ticket to the knockout stage, and Hajduk's ticket out. But Bendiš was having none of it. The Croatian manager was screaming at his touchline, and immediately took Vukojevi? off for the much more stable Jurica Buljat, who took the captain's armband, as well as moving Frano Mlinar to the back.

And it worked wonders, Kuko? and Tacconi dashed up and down the flanks like no-one's business, before ?op was brought down in the box in the 31st, only 8 minutes after Metalist's second goal. Mlinar scored it, making the scoreline reasonable, before ?op scored on Kuko?'s half-volleyed cross in the 40th, bringing it to 2-2.

They kept going to, Hajduk, specifically Ante Vukuši?, scored twice more, in the 57th and the 61st as he got around the keeper twice to give Hajduk a seemingly unassailable 4-2 lead at the hour mark.

Then the game went crazy, as there were 4 goals in 10 minutes, starting with Metalists' Medo, who scored in the 69th. Tacconi scored in the 71st from long range for 5-3, before Taison, who only recently signed a new contract, scored twice to get the man-of-the-match award in the 78th and the 80th.

Hajduk tried to get the win, and got very close, with a Duje ?op header, but Metalist held firm, for the first time all game, and both teams went home, after participating in, undoubtably, the best game of the tie.

Real Madrid GD: +3, PTS: 9
Hajduk Split GD: 0, PTS: 4
Metalist GD:0, PTS: 4
Dortmund GD:-3, PTS: 0

Dortmund, with Nuri Sahin, Mario Götze and Jurgen Klopp, remain on 0 points

CROATIA QUALIFY BY TAKING OUT BELARUS
A fiesty Belarus now needs to beat Scotland in the last match of the Group stage to try and make the playoffs, after Croatia beat them, 1-0. Mario Malo?a scored a beautiful header, as the fiercely physical side took out the former Soviets to secure their spot in the European Championship.
Bendiš's former team, Denmark, took the second qualifying space, ahead of Holland, who have to hope that a third-place finish is good enough. Denmark and Wales both finished with 17 points from a 5 team group, as Holland had 16. Wales was first on goal difference.
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DINAMO END HAJDUK'S REIGN - 25.X.2015
NK DINAMO ZAGREB 3-1 HNK HAJDUK SPLIT
74 games since Hajduk had lost in August of 2013, Hajduk finally dropped all three points. This time, to their greatest rivals, Dinamo Zagreb.

Dinamo started brightly at their own stadium, and some may argue that it was Hajduk's own success that killed them, for, as Hajduk grew, Dinamo grew in its shadow, and, when the Dalmatian giants came to town, Dinamo sold 31 600 tickets for the event. An unprecedented number that is, by far, the closest thing Zagreb has had to a sellout in over 10 years. So, when Hajduk kicked off the ball, they were met by a stadium of jeering, and cheers every time Dinamo touched onto the ball.

So, when Dinamo scored the first goal, 10 minutes in, Maksimir erupted, and sang until their own Nathaniel Will (Holland, 26) scored an own goal in the 31st. Jurica Buljat then got a red card, but Hajduk held strong until the half

It wasn't enough for Soldo. Soldo, like Bendiš, wanted it all. And while Bendiš is one of the most inspiring figures in the game... inspiring, or intimidating, depends how you look at it... Soldo didn't need inspiration. He had the fans for that, and with raw tactical knowledge and experience which Bendiš simply doesn't have yet, he outwitted Hajduk, drawing Split into his box, before flinging Luboš Kalouda ('71) and Ante Rukavina ('86) up front to grab the win.

Bendiš still took the Croatian First Division Manager of the Month award, even with the loss. It is his 20th individual award.

MEANWHILE... IN SPLIT
It wasn't a 10 goal affair, but it was a nice change from Hajduk's loss at Maksimir earlier in the week, as Hajduk defeated Metalist at home. Mario Malo?a opened the scoring from a header, which would set the trend, because every goal in the match was from a dead ball. Gianluca Tacconi got to the end of a cross later to poke one into the bottom corner, before Duje ?op finished the Ukrainians off in a decidedly warmer Split, warmer than Ukraine at least... 3-1.
Dortmund, meanwhile, collect their first point, after fighting for a 1-1 draw in Germany for the draw against Real Madrid, giving Hajduk a chance to take first place, if they win against both Dortmund and Real Madrid
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HAJDUK SCORE THREE TO TAKE 1ST FROM MADRID - 9.XII.2015
HNK HAJDUK SPLIT 3-1 REAL MADRID C.F. - SPLIT
A towering Ton?i Kuko?, and two penalties gave Hajduk the lead they needed to take 1st place from the 10 time Champions League winner, and dash out of one of the more difficult groups on top. Dortmund, in a last gasp effort qualified for the Europa league by beating Metalist Kharkiv, but, let's be honest, the show was really in Split on the last day of the Champions League Group Stage.

It really started well for Bendiš. Raul Albiol got a yellow card in the 9th minute, and allowed Peter Zajac to take a free-kick from about the 40 meter mark. The Slovakian, Chelsea's current striker target, swung a ball in from way out to Ton?i Kuko?, who rose over the entire defense and headed past a sprawling Iker Casillas for the first goal of the evening. It was an important one, because, with Hajduk's away goal, they would still qualify first ahead of Madrid, even though the Spaniards had a better goal difference.

But Mourinho wasn't having it, and his 22 year old striker, Vinícius, cut inside to slot one past Matej Dela? to force Hajduk to score two more in the remaining hour for a first place finish. Bendiš wasn't pleased, and it showed, as the two teams entered half-time even.

But, for possibly the first time ever, Hajduk kept their cool against Real Madrid, and the Spaniards, confronted with 35 000 hostile fans, got nervous, and conceded, not one, but two penalties, both off the legs of Gianluca Tacconi, to gift the game, and first place, to the Croatians. Now, it is worth noting that Hajduk also had the chance to draw off of a penalty in Madrid, but missed the chance. This time, the Croatians did no such thing, scoring both, and going into the knockout stage with momentum.

HNK HAJDUK SPLIT - 13 PTS - GD +5
REAL MADRID C.F. - 13 PTS - GD +5
BORUSSIA DORTMUND - 4 PTS - GD -3
METALIST KHARKIV - 4 PTS - GD -7

HAJDUK GET SUPER LUCKY, REAL DOESN'T
It turns out that Hajduk's victory against Real Madrid might have been one of the most important ones all season, as the Croatians now look to fight "only" Valencia, while Real Madrid has to face German powerhouse: Bayern München to go through to the quarterfinals.
Meanwhile, with Chelsea out (GROUP G: AC MILAN, FENERBAHÇE, PARTIZAN, CHELSEA) Fenerbahce probably got one of the tougher ties of the round, going head to head with Barcelona. The most notable absence will be current English league leaders: Liverpool, who have a three point advantage on Chelsea at the end of the year, with Gerrard, looking to get his first, and probably only, Premier League winners medals.

Anyway:

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE ROUND OF 16:
FENERBAHÇE SK (TUR) - FC BARCELONA (3rd, ESP)
REAL MADRID C.F. (1st, ESP) - FC BAYERN MüNCHEN (1st, DEU)
LOSC LILLE MÉTROPOLE (9th, FRA) - A.C. MILAN (1st, ITA)
VALENCIA C.F., SAD (2nd, ESP) - HNK HAJDUK SPLIT (1st, CRO)
ATHLETICO MADRID (6th, ESP) - OLYMPIQUE DE MARSEILLE (1st, FRA)
BAYER LEVERKUSEN (2nd, DEU)- TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR FC (3rd, ENG)
NAPOLI (4th, ITA) - MANCHESTER UNITED FC (4th, ENG)
CSKA MOSKVA (1st, RUS) - FUTEBOL CLUB DO PORTO - SAD (1st, POR)
This story is really great. I love it m8.

Good luck against Valencia, I'm sure the Champions League will be yours this time :)

And LOL for the goals of the month ;)
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HAJDUK SPENDS 6.25M € TO ENSURE THE FUTURE, DINAMO SELLS MOSQUEDA FOR 9M € - 1.II.2016.
There hasn't been a season where neither Dinamo nor Hajduk haven't taken each transfer window by storm. Last year, it was almost definitely Dinamo, but only after selling Sammir and Arijan Ademi for a combined 9M €, while Hajduk sold nearly as much and spent 500K. This season, however, Dinamo was selling, and big, while Hajduk spent a huge amount as compared to recent years.

Bendiš was helped by his huge transfer budget, which could be adjusted to 57M €, but, even with the smallest possible budget, he still had a war chest of 35. He spent less than a fifth of that, and only one transfer can make an influence now. That person is Ivica Golik, a Croatian of Chilean birth, who, at 15, has moved to the other side of the world, and who might be Croatia's right winger of the future. It is said that Bendiš already has the youngster in a severely physical training scheme. Golik wasn't too expensive though, at 1.3 M € to Colo Colo.

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The bigger arrivals were definitely Antonio Binotto (from AC Milan, 3M), who is looking to follow in Gianluca Tacconi's footsteps, and 15 year old Lamine N'Diaye (from En Avant de Guingcamp, 2.3M)

Although, the most unfortunate fact is that Bendiš was unable to secure the signature of a certain Zlatan Ibrahimovi?. However, the Swede could join in the summer.

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No, the big news is that, somehow, by some force of nature, Dinamo managed to get nearly 10 million euros, almost as much as the reported fees circulating around Gianluca Tacconi, for Enrique Mosqueda, the Mexican who arrived for only 3M from Mexico.

Around Europe, the largest transfers were:

Simon Kjaer - Wolfsburg to Napoli - 24 M €
Šime Vrsaljko - Spartak Moskva to Manchester City - 21 M €
Zoran Toši? - CSKA Moskva to Olympique Lyonnais - 17.25 M €

The largest deadline day transfers were:
José Enrique - Newcastle to Chelsea - 12.25 M €
Thiago Alcantara - Hoffenheim to Internazionale - 6 M €
Sergey Mikhailov - Spartak Moskva to AS Monaco FC - 5.25 M € (regen, 20)

MEANWHILE... IN ZAGREB
A local tycoon is looking to take over Dinamo Zagreb and "relieve" Zvonimir Soldo of his duties. Possibly to replace him with Josip Šimuni?. The directors have put the club in a transfer embargo as of the last day of the transfer window. How this will affect the Croatian First Division remains to be seen, but we're still waiting for the first oil tycoon to join the league. I'm rooting for Rijeka to get them.
DAT REGENS!!
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HAJDUK DEMOLISH VALENCIA IN SPAIN - 24.II.2015
VALENCIA C.F., S.A.D. 1-3 HNK HAJDUK SPLIT - VALENCIA
Hajduk scored twice within the first 10 minutes, once more just before the half, and utterly dominated until the 65th, when they got two red cards. However, even with two extra men, Valencia couldn't take control, and only scored when Hajduk went to 8 men after 18 year old Antonio Binotto got injured, 10 minutes after he took to the field for the first time.

Matej Jonji? opened the scoring, with a gorgeous jump over the Valencia defense. The guy might as well train the high jump, or the long jump, because, with the stuff Jonji?, a central defender, is pulling off on the pitch, one can only wonder what he would do on the track. Valencia simply watched as the ball looped up into the top corner off a Kuko? cross.

And then, just two minutes later, Duje ?op scored in a similar fashion, as Hajduk's resident target man wrongfooted the keeper and danced past the defense to slot Frano Mlinar's pass home. It was an excellent spin which gave him the open goal, and a big surprise from the big striker.

Hajduk's wingers were sublime, with all four: Kuko?, Kušnír, Tacconi and Malling all charging forward and overloading the flanks, and the constant stream of crosses kept troubling the defense, and, by the 45th minute, when Zajac couldn't get it in, Ever Banega did, getting hit by the ball to put it into the back of the net for 3-0 for Hajduk.

After the half, Hajduk kept dominating, until, that is, Jacob Malling committed a straight red, and Ognjen Vukojevi? protested until he got a red as well. Thankfully, Robert Soldado fluffed the penalty, and Hajduk kept holding strong, until Antonio Binotto couldn't keep going. Nikica Jelavi? did get Valencia a consolation goal very very late ('87), but, realistically, if Hajduk play half as well as they did in the away match, then the home match shouldn't even resemble half of an issue.

MEANWHILE... ACROSS EUROPE
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