Responses from the bench and pitch after another effective performance
Luka Zahović: On Monday, things were going badly. On Wednesday, again among the strikers.
Foto: Drago Wernig
There is no slacking; there is no stopping. The purple march also in Velenje: to the victory for the sixth consecutive time, this time under difficult circumstances.

‘The afternoon was not ideal. In the winter, we sometimes played in cold weather at a later time, but now we played on a very warm day in the afternoon hours. For the players, the conditions were challenging, but in this situation, they showed that they were strong and in a very good team moment. Their enthusiasm and speed were noticeable again. However, we still have what a team fighting for the top must have. The right balance between offensive play and successful defending,’ Darko Milanič commented after the duel with Rudar.

Although it was necessary to replace the current attack link, it did not affect the play.
‘Great that it is so. Jan could not play, but here is Marcos, who already proved that many times before, and earned his opportunity also with what he showed in previous matches, even though he did not start them. When he entered matches in second halves, he was at the right level, with the appropriate attitude. He also had it this time and scored two goals. Luka’s performance, however, was questionable; the prospects were still bad on Monday, but on Tuesday, he told me that he did not feel any pain anymore. I am pleased that he continued his effective spring series, that the forwards score, and that the rest of the team see them. They give them opportunities, while effectiveness remains our feature.’

We score goals, we rarely concede them, and the series is escalating, increasing. Now, already up to 6/6.
‘We know what awaits us until the end: six qualifying matches. Calculations do not come into play, few points are lost, and if we look at the overall number of defeats of the leading teams, we are aware that it will be necessary to continue to win. Most likely in all the remaining matches. The task is clear: any thinking that a victory is already recorded in advance must be rejected. Since many have already been burned that way.’

In addition to the view from the bench, a view from the pitch. Aleks Pihler commented after another successful performance: ‘A demanding match, as we expected. We had to adapt to more difficult circumstances, since it was already hot on the sidelines, and for us on the pitch even more so. But with our quality, we were creating opportunities and took advantage of three of them. We scored at the right moment, before the end of the first half. This time, Mlakar was missing, but Zahović scored again, and Tavares has shown that he is our captain here when we need him the most. We can be glad to have attackers in a good mood. We increased the series of victories to six, but we don’t think that we’re invincible. We agreed to go forward with the same mentality, from match to match, and to stay on this path. This is also the best invitation to spectators to come to the Ljudski Vrt on Saturday.’