OFK Grbalj

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OFK Grbalj
FK Grbalj.png
Full name Fudbalski klub Grbalj
Founded 1970; 44 years ago (1970)
Ground Stadion "Grbalj"-Pod Sutvarom

Montenegro
Ground Capacity 1.500
Chairman Marko Carević
Manager Dragan Pićan
Coach Marko Vidojević
League First League

OFK Grbalj (pronounced [ɡr̩̂baʎ]) is a football club based in the town of Radanovići (municipality of Kotor) in Montenegro. Prior to the independence and the establishment of Montenegrin first division, the side played a minor role in regional, and more recently republican second division level. Few could have predicted the level of success they would enjoy in the Montenegrin first division, but after two successful seasons in a row and subsequent respectable displays in the UEFA Intertoto Cup, the former minnows have established themselves as one of the leading Montenegrin clubs.

Recent seasons[edit]

The Grbalj side claimed an impressive third place in the inaugural season of Montenegrin first division, 2006/07, just behind the two clubs that were deemed invincible in the national competitions, Zeta and Budućnost. The subsequent season was much more competitive, and Grbalj struggled in the first half of the season to keep up with the new divisional powerhouse Mogren and a strong Rudar team. But the side fought bravely and snatched the 4th place in the dying rounds of the season.

Prior to the 2008/09 season, Grbalj was given a lot of attention by the national media and they were even awarded with a potential title challenger tag. The departure of creative forwards Dražen Ajković to Budućnost and Božo Milić to Petrovac was quickly made up for when the club signed perspective striker Marko Kasalica from Sutjeska and the former Zeta, Budućnost and Mogren journeyman forward Dražen Milić.

The new manager, Nebojša Vignjević, quickly became the fans' favorite with preference for high-tempo football and the hard-working Grbalj team impressed once again at the start of season by cruising to 2-1 victories against two title contenders - Budućnost and Mogren.

European competitions[edit]

In the 2007/08 season, FK Grbalj participated in the UEFA Intertoto Cup, thus becoming the first Montenegrin league side to ever compete in a European competitions. They were knocked out in the first round by an ambitious Romanian AFC Gloria 1922 Bistrita team. Nevertheless, the European debutants from Montenegro had impressed in both matches, and failed to materialize the advantage they had on the pitch by conceding two cheap goals away from home.

With a good form carrying on after a successful 2007/08 season in the national league, one season of European competition experience already behind them, and a talented manager Nebojša Vignjević at helm, Grbalj were much more confident about their second European campaign. This confidence was only bolstered after the draw pitched them against NK Čelik Zenica, a Bosnian side which Vignjević felt Grbalj could play on even terms with. The outcome were the two matches in which Grbalj routinely knocked-out their opponents, losing 3-2 in a tight match away from home (after an early lead), and dominating the return game played in Nikšić to a decisive 2-1 victory.

The second round draw was not so favorable for the Montenegrins, facing them off against an ambitious Sivasspor of Turkey, yet it was in these two games that the motivated Grbalj side produced the most breathtaking displays of football. After failing to capitalize on a lead at home and succumbing to an unlucky 2-2 draw, the team put up a hard fight away from home, missing several scoring opportunities before being punished by Sivasspor with an 85' minute goal.

Current squad[edit]

As of 20 March 2013[1]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
-- Bosnia and Herzegovina GK Goran Vukliš
1 Serbia GK Ljubomir Đurović
6 Montenegro DF Igor Radusinović
7 Montenegro MF Branislav Janković
8 Montenegro MF Nikola Bogdanović
9 Serbia FW Nikola Ašćerić
11 Montenegro MF Ilija Bogdanović
15 Montenegro DF Milan Carević
No. Position Player
16 Montenegro DF Ćetko Manojlović
17 Montenegro DF Goran Milojko
19 Montenegro FW Dejan Pepić
21 Montenegro MF Dragan Nikolić
23 Montenegro DF Ilija Tučević
-- Japan DF Kenta Yamazaki
-- Montenegro FW Ivan Jablan

References[edit]

  1. ^ Soccerway

External links[edit]