As the minutes passed and the start time of the long-awaited promotion of the new coach approached, the conference hall in Sazonova Street became too small to accommodate all those who wanted to be a part, everyone hopes, the moment after faith in the national team and the system returns success. From the ceiling of the hall, memories of the greatest successes, photos from the greatest events since the disintegration of the great Yugoslavia. Among other golds from Istanbul and Indianapolis. It is quite clear to everyone who will take the baton later Igor Kokoshkov…
Ten minutes before the start, the needle had nowhere to fall, and the coach’s size as it is Svetislav Pesic deserves such a welcome. Academically they waited, and when they did Pesic appeared at the door everyone had in mind only one question – how long will we legendary Curry can we see him as the coach of Serbia?
"The contract is for three years, until the end of the Olympic Games in Paris”, was the first answer we got.
We will have to wait for the composition of the professional staff, the returnee to the bench of the national team remained buttoned up on that issue, although he himself said that more "do not know” who will be next to him on the bench from the preparations in November, the qualification for Mundobasket 2023 and the meeting with Latvia.
"I greet all my friends, journalists, people … President Danilović wished me good health, I am in excellent health. We will need happiness, a little for everyone. The more we work – the more happiness. We have come here now, again. I am looking forward to a new challenge and I am looking forward to being the national team coach again. This is not my first time, I have some experiences, but what can be said – forget the experience, if you don’t know how to use it ", began his presentation Pesic.
The legendary expert also spoke about his plans for the next period, for the entire term …
"I will try to put my experience and knowledge in the service of Serbian basketball, not just the national team. The national team is still the most important, I am sure of what I know, and that is that these people who are on my left and right, Sasa (Danilovic) and Dragan (Tarlac), will give me support. We got along well, we also have people who are former players. What you asked for, you got. Basketball should belong to basketball players, there are Nenad Krstić, Bolić, Tarlać, Danilović … Rely on us, give us support and there will be happiness, there will be results ", says the man who brought the last two representative gold medals and added:
"What I could say is that everything is changing, we are changing. This is Serbia, it is no longer Yugoslavia. It is the same in the basketball sense, I will need time, in agreement with Danilović, the negotiations took longer, because at that time I said that I needed a professional coach, someone who would always be there, on the field, in the office, at work … . "
He also revealed that before the final decision to return to the bench of the national team, he performed a "public opinion test”.
"I had to think for a long time, it was a public inquiry, I see that the public was quite enthusiastic about the proposals. When people from the outside started calling me, then the analysis was over. Now I will spend most of my time in Serbia. I will do my best and I am sure there will be results. I also received maximum support from my family, my son Marko told me not to wait for anything and to take over the team. ".
One of the most important questions at the press conference was – how to restore the collapsed cult of the national team?
"It is not about any cult of the national team, circumstances are changing. Everything is changing, so the attitude towards everything, not only the national team, is changing. Not only here, but all over the world. When I came to Germany in 1987 as a coach in the Bundesliga, no one wanted to play for the national team, not because there was no cult, but no one believed that through the national team they could achieve in their careers. It was a process that lasted, he had great support, I had a vision and an idea of how to achieve that goal. Now I am in Serbia, now the same question is being asked again. ", he said Pesic and emphasized:
"They are all athletes who have become and come to a certain level so that they can play for the national team, then it simply means that you achieved that because you are a competitor. Most want to be in a team with the best, they want to play against the best. There is no question at all. Someone is more of a competitor, someone less, but I don’t want to deal with the cult of the national team, but with people with whom I want to create a slightly different relationship, and that is the interest in winning, in success, to be better than everyone, to get the feeling that I’m better than before. That is the time we live in, I will try to implement my ideas in such a process“.
The selector joked that he is not a supporter of long and thorough preparations, but he notes that he will do everything in his power so that the national team has not only a short-term, but also a long-term result of the work it plans.
"I have never been a fan of long preparations, someone invented it … Now everything is different. The influence and power of coaches is greatly reduced, not only when it comes to national teams, but also clubs … In the national team, you do not depend only on players, but on clubs. In a club, you depend on the players, the better you have or the players that suit your philosophy, the successes will be bigger and better. If there was a dilemma on my part whether to take over the national team again, then I am of all our current coaches, friendly, sports support and the desire that we all work together on a higher goal. We can argue that the national team is the most important to us, and then do nothing. This national team is not mine, I am here to introduce work, order and discipline, and instead of discipline I would put responsibility. My responsibility and the man next to me is not in question, but now I would like everyone who says that the national team is the most important – to help me“.
And what will be the strength of the Serbian national team?
"I want to focus my activity on analyzing all players, from younger categories to seniors. We will do that in the professional staff and at the level of the Alliance, to make some determinants of how we will behave. I want to share my experience with Nenad Krstić and Dragan Tarlać. I would like to learn something from them too. You can get something from everyone, to learn. You just have to adjust to the situation. The national team is ahead of everything. We know that basketball in Serbia does not end with us, we have to take care of young coaches and players, to see how we can integrate all of them into the system“.