– No matter who is standing on the other side of the net, we look at this team as a strong team – admitted Ivan Miljković after the match against AZS Politechnika Warszawska. He added that such victory allows to demonstrate the power of Fenerbahçe.
How would you assess thes game? If we look at the result, it seems that it was an easy victory for you, but from your perspective it really was?
Ivan Miljković: – It was much easier than we expected. Certainly the result – we won 3:0 , and sets twice to seventeen and one to fourteen – suggests that it was a game from the category of fast and easy, but for us it wasn’t so easy. For us there are no easy games – in every game we do our best, we fully focus and we will continue to do so. No matter who is standing on the other side of the net – we will look at this team as a strong team.
However, you have done the first, very important step towards promotion to the next round of Challenge Cup.
– Yes, but I do not look at it that way. I don’t think even now for the next phase of the competition because we are still waiting for another match against AZS Politechnika Warszawska. Without a doubt, these three points gained in this match are very important for us and certainly we will try to win also in Istanbul. I hope we win and present well enough to get through to the next round.
And isn’t it like for Fenerbahçe the Challenge Cup is a cup of a lower category and your goal is to get the promotion to the Champions League?
– If we want to qualify for the Champions League, we have to play well in the Turkish league and win the championship or vicechampionship. But to make this happen, a long way inf ront of us – to playoffs there’s still a lot of time because it will begin in March or April. Therefore, we aren’t yet focused on it, we do not think about it. Anyway there’s no doubt that Fenerbahçe is getting stronger year by year and I hope that even now, in the Challenge Cup, we will play against the strongest teams and next year we’ll be competing in the Champions League and play against the best teams in Europe.
Although the beginning of the league was pretty good for you – you recently defeated the Halkbank Ankara.
– Yes , it’s true but it was only one game. Of course it was very difficult – a tie-break ended with the result 16:14 for us , moreover, each of the sets was very close and each result was around tie. For us it is important in the sense that it helps us to demonstrate that we are a strong team which now plays a really good volleyball.
In Turkey, you play for the fourth season – so you have to feel comfortable here . You thought about it , and right here would end his career?
– I don’t know. I don’t even think about retirement. Today I will focus only on the current season and on that it would be good for us. My contract with Fenerbahçe is valid till the end of this season and if in the future I will be healthy, I’ll feel good – I’ll think about it. But still I enjoy playing volleyball a lot and I do not know when I say “stop”.
So what affects on that the Turkish league is becoming more and more interesting for volleyball players?
– At the moment in Turkey are money. They are invested in the best volleyball players – it’s like that if you have enough money, you can have the best players in the world. In addition, if such players come to the league then every year it grows in strength and becomes more and more attractive.
And haven’t you considered the option to try yourself in the Russian league which is considered as one of the best in the world?
– I honestly do not. Why should I think about that? There are many players who have not played in some strong leagues, there are also those who have not won some trophies yet and they finished their career. It’s not like that – for example, I didn’t win the gold medal in the world championship so should I play in the national team till I win it? At the moment I’m happy that I play in Turkey.