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Romania U23 is, in fact, Otelul U23!

May 10, 2010 3 comments

Still Romania's national team coach, Razvan Lucescu

Razvan Lucescu has a problem. And if he has a problem, our national team has a problem. After making a bad choice when appointed – he decided to hang on to the very slim chances to qualify, instead of building a new team, based on his coaching philosophy, offering official games to the new faces and trying to integrate them into a new, fresh squad – he doesn’t know where to go from here. He realizes that he cannot fail in the campaign for Euro 2012, so he cannot start a team from scratch, with a lot of new names, young players and so on, but he’s also aware that counting on pretty much the same team that missed tournament after tournament will lead to his dismissal after the first couple of failures. So, he has just a few chances (friendly games) until the official kick off of the new campaign, to both find those new faces and also try to blend them into the national team. And he does what? Calls to the U23 nine players (out of 18!) from just one team, Otelul Galati! Wouldn’t have been a better idea to ask Otelul take a trip to Belgium and play a friendly against their U23, with Lucescu in the stands or, even better, at home, waiting for the DVD?

For those interested, here is “Romania’s U23” for tomorrow’s game against Belgium, part of the “International Challenge Trophy”:

Goalkeepers: Cezar Lungu (Steaua II), Alexandru Pena (AS Roma Primavera)

Defenders: Cornel Rapa, Samuel Cojoc, Silviu Ilie, Cristian Sarghi (Otelul Galati), Vlad Chiriches (International Curtea de Arges)

Midfielders: Liviu Antal, Ionut Neagu, Laurentiu Iorga, Razvan Ochirosii (Otelul Galati), Sorin Stratila, Alexandru Stan (Astra Ploiesti), Vasile Olariu, Viorel Nicoara (Victoria Branesti – second division)

Forwards: Mircea Axente (Otelul Galati), Mihai Radut (International Curtea de Arges), Liviu Ganea (Astra Ploiesti).

Kapetanos gets his first call up to the Greek national team

February 17, 2010 Leave a comment
  • Steaua’s centre-forward Pantelis Kapetanos (26) has earned his first call up to the Greek national team, for the friendly against Senegal, scheduled on the 3rd of March. Not the most eye-catching forward in the league, Kapetanos impressed in the first half of season and proved a vital player and a clinical finisher for Steaua, scoring 9 goals in 11 starts for the red and blue outfit.
  • Not 100% fit after his back injury that forced him to lose completely the first half of season in Romania, FC Timisoara’s centre forward Dejan Rusic (27) missed out on a transfer to Olimpija Ljubljana.
  • Joao Paulo Pinto Ribeiro (29) has been declared a free player by the Professional League and the striker who had a terrible scoring record at Rapid (3 goals in 40 matches!) is free to sign with Leixoes.
  • Steaua Bucharest presents Florentin Matei (17) as one of the club’s hottest prospects. Club owner Gigi Becali says that the kid has a bright future at the Bucharest club, but, at this age, the skilled attacking midfielder isn’t getting any space to accelerate his development, not even in Steaua’s reserve team, which is playing in the Romanian second division…
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