Slovenian federation breaks with coach Vujovic

Uros Volk / ew

Slovenian federation breaks with coach Vujovic

Veselin Vujovic’s term as head coach of the Slovenian men's national team has come to an abrupt end on Wednesday, six weeks before the start of the Men’s EHF EURO 2020 in Sweden, Austria and Norway.

The Slovenian federation (RZS) ended the cooperation with the former left back, who had led the team since 2015, in a decision that was taken “unanimously,” according to a statement on the RZS website.

The RZS acknowledged that Slovenia “achieved brilliant results” under Vujovic, including bronze at the World Championship 2017, sixth place at the 2016 Olympics, and eighth place at EHF EURO 2018, but added that the time for a change had come.

“After more than four years of excellent cooperation, the saturation within the national team has recently started to come to a standstill,” said the RZS, calling it “too much risk for the upcoming championship and other national team appearances” to continue working with Vujovic.

Although several names have popped up in Slovenian media, the federation said it planned to present a successor only by mid-December, shortly before Slovenia are set to start their final preparations for EHF EURO 2020.

Slovenia will take on co-hosts Sweden, Switzerland and Poland in Gothenburg in the preliminary round of the European Championship in January.

Vujovic was combining his national team duties with coaching clubs, and this season he returned to the VELUX EHF Champions League as head coach of HC PPD Zagreb. He has led a string of teams since 1995, including Ciudad Real and HC Vardar, and the national teams of Serbia and Montenegro and North Macedonia.

In his successful active career, Vujovic won Olympic and world titles with the national team, and the Champions Cup with Metaloplastika and Barcelona. He was the IHF World Player of the Year in 1988.

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