We present you two players of Macedonian origin who recently debuted for the U21 national team. Simovski from Sweden and Taneski from Slovenia.
Macedonia U21 team manager Blagoja Milevski has begun creating a team for the new qualification cycle (2017/18) with a game against Belarus that finished with a 1:1 draw. Part of this new team were Alex Simovski and Rok Taneski. Alex has been caped with Macedonian U19 team in 2014 while Rok had his debut for Macedonia at this game. Simovski was born and raised in Sweden and his relation to Macedonia is through his maternal grandfather who was born in Mavrovo, while Taneski was born and raised in Slovenia but his paternal grandfather is from the village Kuratica, near Ohrid. MacedonianFootball used this opportunity for a brief interview with them at the Aleksandar Palace hotel in Skopje.
MF. Welcome to Macedonia guys. What it feels like to be here as members of the Macedonian U21 national team?
Alex: I'm so happy to be here after two years. I've played 4 matches for Macedonian U19 national team in 2014 (Mario Vujovikj was the coach) so I know some of the guys: Kostadinov, Demir, Alomerovikj, Cheshmedjiev, Ilikj, Petkovski, Krstikj. It was good to see them after some time and to play together with them as well.
Rok: It's an honour for me to be here. This is a debut for me in the Macedonian jersey. I've been caped for Slovenian U17 and U19 national teams in the past. There were some negotiations to play for Macedonia before but now I'm finally here and I hope that I'll have a succesful career as a member of Macedonian national football teams.
MF: What are your impressions from the game against Belarus?
Alex: It was a tough game. I think that I've played a good game but I know that I can play a lot better next time. Most of the guys played for the first time together so I'm satisfied with the final score.
Rok: I'm satisfied with my role in the game and I hope that the coach Milevski is satisfied too. I regret that I didn't react better when I had a chance to score at the last minute of the game.
MF: Both of you are playing at the senior level this year. Tell us something more about your football career.
Alex: I was a part of the Hammarby youth teams in the past but this year I've signed a contract with Akropolis, in the Swedish third league. Some of the games I've stayed on the bench and some of the games I was part of the starting eleven. I'm working very hard and I hope that I'll become a regulare starter in the future.
Rok: In the past I was a member of several teams at junior level in Slovenia and Italy. In Slovenia I've played for Olimpija, Domžale and Maribor and in Italy for Verona and Virtus Lanciano. As a member of Maribor U19 team I took part in the European Youth Champions League. This season I was a regular at Maribor B team in the Slovenian third league. I have several offers to swich the club in the summer transfer period but I wouldn't rush with the final decision.
MF: Which team is your favorite at the EURO in France?
Alex: I was born and raised in Sweden so I like Sweden to win the tournament. My second choice is England.
Rok: Spain is my favorite to win the title.
MF: When are you coming back to Macedonia?
Alex: I can't say for sure. The football season in Sweden runs from April untill November so probably at the end of the year if I have a chance.
Rok: Hopefully this summer for vacation in Ohrid.
MF: We wish you luck in your further careers.
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