Malcolm McLaren once tipped me off to a useful piece of advice for when visiting a new city for the first time. This wasn’t any great insight or revelation that McLaren felt compelled to share with me personally: it was the fortunate outcome a television programme that he was presenting.
In this show, the entertainment Svengali brought to life the characters of London’s historic underbelly by pointing out evidence of their homes and business premises visible above the familiar twentieth century storefronts.
Football pundits have been quick to sound the death knell over Serbian football since the country’s two top teams crashed out of the UEFA Champions League in less than spectacular fashion. It did not help when Serbia’s national coach made some bizarre comments about his favoured results in the forthcoming Euro 2012 qualifiers. The comments of Vladimir Petrović appear to aim below target for the national team and deserve questioning, even given the injury-struck squad.
But, while the disappointment for Partizan and Red Star Belgrade fans is palpable, the significance should not be overplayed. Rather than bad-mouthing individuals or clubs, now is the time to address the cause of this glitch and put in place the necessary elements to prevent it recurring. Serbian football must prove that there is life in the old dog yet.
Belgrade has exposed its funny side with a humorous new advertising campaign that encourages people to keep their city clean. Dog owners are the targets of this canny campaign to encourage greater consideration for a cleaner city.
As was clearly the aim, the posters from international communications powerhouse McCann Erickson Belgrade have attracted attention at home and abroad, presenting a side of Serbia that is too rarely seen: its humour.
Serbia’s Olympic Sports Director has hit out at a system that allows athletes to lose sight of their priorities and for Serbia to under-perform in competition. “We spoil our athletes because we build some kind of mystery around them, about their behaviour and their needs,’ Serbia’s Olympic sports chief Branislav Jevtić told W!LD RooSTeR during a visit to London.
“Companies invest in them and the athletes are spoiled in some way. They become celebrities, they stop their training and development and, as a result, we have less qualified athletes than we expected. When a lot of our athletes play abroad, no one thinks about their health, their anti-doping or operations. They play only for money. They have a fascination for money and they are spoiled. That is a big problem for us and I don’t know how to solve it.”