After a good run of form in our new counter-attacking system, we hit a block in the form of a five-one loss at the end of April. So, with four games of the season remaining, we enter May with a big decision to make regarding our future.
The choice has been made, with a massively over performing squad, financial difficulties and strong options elsewhere, I have decided to call an end of my time at NK Krk. After two and a half successful seasons, I will be moving on in June.
Therefore, with four games remaining and safety already secured, I was determined to end my time at my first club on a high.
This began well, with a one-nil victory at home due to a goal from the league’s top scorer Nino. However, we followed this with a two-one defeat away, and threw away a two-goal lead at home in our final game on Krk Island.
We made up for it in our last game of the season though, in potentially the most exciting and dramatic game of the entire save.
We went two goals behind against NK Varazdin in the final fixture of the Druga HNL campaign. However, loanee Zugaj got us back in the game. Dalibor Gerc our excellently performing young winger got a straight red card that seemed to throw the game away from us when the opposition followed up with a third goal fifteen minutes before the break. However, a goal from our left-back Manolo Bilic followed by a red card for one of their players left the game firmly in the balance at three-two going into the interval.
Straight away after the restart, Nino sealed the golden boot with his fourteenth of the season to pull us level against his old club, before goals from winger Josip Galesic and centre-back Smolcic gave us a five-three lead going into extra time. Varazdin would pull one back, but we’d hold out for a five-four victory in our last game in change of NK Krk. A fairy-tale ending to our time at the club.
We finished firmly in mid-table, a huge overachievement with a side expected to finish rock bottom.
Player of the season: Averaging a goal every other game, and winning the league’s golden boot in his first full season at the club as a permanent member of the squad, it was easy to give Nino Mohorovicic our player of the season award. His fourteen goals were crucial in our campaign, as he stepped up time and time again when it mattered. In many games, he was our only goal scorer, with his hat-trick against Hadjuk Split’s B Team the highlight in a very successful season for Nino. At our new club, he will be missed.
Overall it has been an excellent end to our third season in the save, and with the back-to-back overachievements, we have managed to secure ourselves a massive step up as we move clubs.
From the beginning of pre-season in the 21/22 campaign, we will be managing in Croatia yet again. However, we have accepted a job in the top division of Croatian football, with last season’s six placed side NK Lokomotiva.
Playing in the Hrvatski Telekom Prva Liga, or Croatia’s Premier League, Lokomotiva just managed to secure Europa League football in the previous campaign. Going from a third-tier sized club in Krk, to an established continental club who are in European competition for the upcoming season, is undoubtedly a huge step up. With better staff, facilities and finances, this represents a chance for us to further our career, after huge success at Krk.
However, with this being the Holiday Journeyman save, there were things we needed to consider before taking the new job. Lokomotiva are a club based in the north of Croatia, within its capital city of Zagreb. With every club in this save, they needed to pass the Holiday Rule before we could manage them. This means that if a club is not situated in a location that I would like to visit on holiday, we cannot sign for the club.
So, I googled Zagreb, looked at what it had to offer, and it’s fair to say it has passed the test.
This stunning city, will be where I will be based for the next chapter of the save. I will miss the beaches of Krk Island, with the rushing to the pool at six in the morning to secure a sunbed, and the sand in my socks, and the litres of factor fifty sun cream I would have to pour on my pale skin, but I am happy with my decision, look forward to moving to the city.
…okay I’ve done a bit of research and I will still have to put sun cream on in Zagreb because its currently thirty-four degrees Celsius there. So, not ideal, but still I’m excited for the job ahead at NK Lokomotiva.
Our next blog post will detail the beginning of the fourth season in the Holiday Journeyman save, as we move to our new club. Thank you for reading!