Velkovski with his award for Best young player of the first half-season 2011/12

Interview with Darko Velkovski

Velkovski with his award for Best young player of the first half-season 2011/ conducted an interview with Rabotnichki’s midfielder Darko Velkovski, considered one of the most talented youngsters in Macedonia.

Darko Velkovski is only 16-years-old, yet he plays regularly for Rabotnichki with whom he made a great run last summer in the Europa League qualifications, which culminated in a matchup against Italian side Lazio in the play-off round.  His good form for Rabotnicki did not go unnoticed as he won the “Best young player for the first half of the 2011/12 season award” by getting the most votes from our fans on facebook.

MF: When and where did you start your professional career? Which coach has had the biggest influence on you?
DV: I began my career at Makedonija Gjorche Petrov some 7-8 years ago.  My fist coach was Sashe Zmejkovski with whom I worked throughout my time there until last year when I moved to Rabotnichki.  Goran Petreski saw me in the U17 national team, where he was also the manager, and offered me the chance to join Rabotnichki so those two coaches are most responsible for my football development.

MF: How was the feeling of playing in the Europa League at only 16 years old?
DV: It was a great feeling which gave me added boost to work even harder in the future.

MF: Are the training sessions in Rabotnichki enough for you to advance your career or do you also train individually?  Do you have a special diet?
DV: I train only with Rabotnichki, while for the food I listen to the club doctors who give me instructions on what to eat.

MF: Many of your teammates are much older than you.  How have they accepted you and who helps you the most by giving you advice?
DV: So far, I can say that I have received help from many of my teammates so I can’t really name one or two in particular.Velkovski and Jürgen Colin of Anorthosis; photo:

MF: Where do you see yourself in 2-3 years?
DV: To be honest with you, I have no idea.  We shall see as time goes by.

MF: Which footballer is your idol and why?
DV: My idols are Andriy Shevchenko and Ricardo Kaká whom I have liked since I was little as both impress me with their style of play.

MF: Since you play in midfield, an area where Macedonia doesn’t possess many quality players, many of our Forum members believe that you should be given a chance in the senior national team or at least the U21 squad.  How do you feel about this?
DV: I’ve heard people talking about that, I hope to soon be a part of the U21 national team. (Darko received a call up from U21 national team coach Boban Babunski for the previous qualifier against Northern Ireland, in which he did not play, but he is expected to feature in the two friendlies later this month)

MF: What happened with Rabotnichki this season? You started furiously in the Europa League, but disappointed in the domestic league and then the club also lost the Macedonian Cup final.
DV: We had a solid start in the league but then we had those 8 consecutive defeats which took us out of the title race.  Then, we aimed our thoughts only at winning the Macedonian Cup, but that is football, you never know what can happen, we failed to grab the Cup.  I hope we will have more luck next season in both the league and cup games.

MF: In concluding, do you know if there is interest in you from foreign clubs, if it’s not a secret.
DV: I haven’t heard anything about that but even if there is, I haven’t been told anything.

Highlights of Velkovski’s debut for Rabotnichki against Trans in the Europa League:

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