First half of the 2010/11 season ended. Some teams can be very proud, some teams are at a relief the break finally arrived.
We have seen 18 rounds. Or, we have pushed our way through 18 rounds. Instead of a constant improvement of the Macedonian league, we are, sadly, watching stagnation or maybe even deterioration. Stadiums are emptier and emptier, quality is worse.
At least this season we have watched football unlike last season when controversy was at its’ best. This season we also saw several matches broadcast live on television which is a miracle for Macedonian football league although it is year 2010. We have even seen Liverpool in Skopje, thankfully to Rabotnicki.
By looking at the table, one might be amazed. Vardar and Pelister are stuck on the bottom with few chances to avoid relegation, as things stand. But, it is their own fault. Football brands are simply not working anymore. Changing of presidents, suspicious matches, no money, no work conditions… Someone is fooling around with 2 prestigious football clubs and nobody cares. Imagine if this happened to Partizan and Crvena Zvezda, or Dinamo Zagreb and Hajduk Split, or God forbid, Real Madrid and Barcelona. But, that is why we are so far from Europe, from European standards, from European competitions.
Shkendija and Renova, followed by Rabotnicki are deservedly near the top. Especially the current leader. With biggest home attendance by far (on the derby against Renova 10000+ attendance) and impressive home results it was only logical they are at the top. In fact, if You see the top teams You will notice organized football clubs with solid finances and good club management. Unlike Pelister and Vardar. It seems teams placed 6 to 10 are in golden middle but with every chance of making a surprise as the difference between teams are not at all big and this season we clearly saw how any team can beat any other team.
To sum up, it is sad where the Macedonian football is going. Or, not going. We need an improvement and we need it fast. With every passing week, more and more fans are disappointed by their favorite teams. Especially, when everyone speaks about arranging match results before matches start. If it was not for Shkendija, this season we would have hit rock-bottom with average attendance. Referees are under constant pressure and not a round passes without complaints or even worse. But, the referees problems will be more detailed explained in coming days in an article where the referees will have chance of expressing themselves as well.
When we have reached the half-season, a song popped into my head. A chorus, actually. It says ‘We are half way there, living on a prayer’ The 1986 rock-song by Bon Jovi reminded me of the current football happenings. Of course, it is not that black, but several teams along with their fans and players are surely living on a prayer at the moment. In football, many people say, when half-season ends, there is a new beginning. So, let’s see all the transfers, both in and out from the clubs, so we can see which teams will be praying for their destiny on spring.