PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 27 November 2009 18:15

Moreira prepares for “crazy” Belgrade derby

Red Star-Partizan preview

On a weekend of major derby matches across the continent, few compare to the intensity of the Belgrade showdown between Red Star and Partizan.

Benfica’s trip to Sporting on Saturday evening will catch the eye of most Portuguese football fans, while Spain will grind to a standstill as Barcelona meet Real Madrid in El Classico at Camp Nou on Sunday, just hours after London rivals Arsenal and Chelsea face off in the English Premier League.

However, for Portuguese forward Almani Moreira, one fixture dominates the thoughts this weekend, as his Partizan side head to the Stadion Crvena Zvezda to play bitter city rivals Red Star, whom they trail by four points at the top of the Serbian Super League.

“The stadiums are five minutes walk away from one another. There are many similarities with the rivalry between Benfica and Sporting because Red Star and Partizan are practically neighbours, but I think there is no game in Portugal that compares to this,” Moreira told Maisfutebol.

“The derby is more aggressive here, but in the right way. They start talking about the game ten or fifteen days beforehand because the fans live it so intensely. They accept almost everything, but not losing this game. You could lose ten straight matches, but if you win the derby it’s fine.

“The players here in Serbia also live this game so strongly. It’s crazy. They spend days and days talking about it. It feels like they feel the nerves long before the match. There is an obligation to lift the mood of everyone.

“Last year we drew the derby 1-1 and I scored the equaliser in the last minute. It was madness. In the days that followed, people came up to me in the street wanting to thank me. It’s amazing how they live these games here.”

Related article: Moreira picks up Partizan Player of the Year award

Add your comment