Earlier today, UEFA President, Alekdander Čeferin has been a guest of the FA of Serbia, at the Sports Centre in Stara Pazova. Head of the European football arrived in the company of one of his closest associates, UEFA National Associations Director, Zoran Laković. They were welcomed by the FAS Deputy President Nenad Bjeković, General Secretary Jovan Šurbatović, Honorary President Tomislav Karadžić, A Team Director Stevan Stojanović and A Team Head-Coach Dragan Stojković.
The day before, UEFA president was at the book launch of his father Petera, where he also met numerous people from Serbian football and sport in general. Mr Čeferin’s last visit to Belgrade was in 2019, while his first visit to the FAS Sports Centre was in March 2017.
“I had a great time last night, it was really relaxed, with a lot of friends. I rarely visit countries where I feel so good. As for the training centre, it is fascinating. Believe me, I have seen almost all training centres in Europe, but even the largest countries do not have this”, stated the UEFA president at the beginning of the conversation held with the FA of Serbia.
Mr Čefering then commented on the cooperation with the FA of Serbia.
“First of all, I am not exactly a diplomat. I can openly and truly say that the cooperation with the FAS, with the president and general secretary, is ideal. It could not be better. I feel at home here.”
Our distinguished guest from UEFA especially referred to the engagement of Dragan Stojković in the FAS as the head-coach of the A team, with which he had qualified for the World Cup in Qatar.
“Piksi was a legend as a player, and now we see even more how good a coach he is. You have a great team and for me, qualification for the World Cup is nothing sensational. You deserve it and I am sure Serbia’s result at the World Cup will be excellent.”
World Cup in Qatar will be unique in specific in many ways, all the teams will be in one city, the competition will be held practically in the winter period…
“Although it is a specific competition because it will be staged in November and December and in a small territory, I am sure the organization of it will be great. They are very dedicated, and they work hard on it. It will be different, but the world cup will also be different.”
Next year is an electoral year at UEFA. Mr Čeferin has already received great and written support from almost all UEFA member associations, with the FA of Serbia being among the first. We had an information that there were 48 of them, but the UEFA president denied that.
“There is new information, over 50 member associations have sent their written support. And yes, the FA of Serbia is one of the first, which means a lot to me”, UEFA President, Aleksander Čeferin ended the conversation.
DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF THE FA OF SERBIA, NENAD BJEKOVIĆ
“Čeferin is a man of football, with whom is always useful and pleasant to talk.”
Deputy President of the FA of Serbia Nenad Bjeković also spoke with chosen words about Mr Čeferin, whom he thanked for the visit and support.
“The impressions are extraordinary. I would like to thank Mr Čeferin for his visit and for giving us an opportunity to spend these two days together, exchange experiences and talk about cooperation. Mr Čeferin is more than satisfied with our cooperation, as we are with UEFA attitude towards our Association. He is a man of football, with whom is always useful and pleasant to talk. We are grateful to him for everything, and I believe our cooperation will continue and be even stronger in the future.”
SERBIA NATIONAL TEAM HEAD-COACH, DRAGAN STOJKOVIĆ
“When you are praised by the head of the European football, it is really impressing, and it motivates you to be even better.”
A Team Head-Coach Dragan Stojković thanked Mr Čeferin for his visit and expressed his impressions after two days they spent together.
“It is a pleasure for all of us in the FA of Serbia to have the head of UEFA Aleksander Čeferin and his associate, a high-ranking UEFA official, Zoran Laković as guests. It is a great honour to have such distinguished and eminent guests, and above all, friends. We spent these two days in the best possible way. When the impressions settle, they will be really positive”, said the head-coach.
“THANK YOU, FIFA; I AM HAPPY WITH THE DECISION TO INCREASE THE NUMBER OF PLAYERS AT THE WORLD CUP”
From June 23rd, what was talked about became official; FIFA increased the number of players at the World Cup final tournament from 23 to 26. Dragan Stojković was one of those in favour of this initiative, during the stay in Doha for the World Cup group stage draw.
“The idea was born at a FIFA panel meeting of all head-coaches, in Doha. I am very happy with such a decision, but I believe the same goes for all the national team coaches. As I said then, and I will repeat it – I think 26 players is the optimal number. It absolutely does not change a thing; looking from the human side, not only the coaching one, it even gives a certain satisfaction, both to me and all the players who will be on the list. I am very glad for that decision, and I welcome it. I would like to congratulate to FIFA on understanding and a very smart and logical decision”, stated the football head-coach of Serbia.