Fans of both sides were at least expecting Europa League matches for next season, instead both teams ended season at mid-table.
Vardar were the defending champions in the past season and shared the top along with Pelister and Horizont Turnovo after the first half-season, but they eventually ended on the 5th place of the table. Although Blagoja Milevski had titles with Vardar, new owner of the club Sergey Samsonenko decided to install a new manager in Russian Sergey Andreyev and things did not turn out as expected for Vardar. Eventually, they even failed to get a UEFA Europa League spot for next season. That is why, big changes are already on their way in Vardar. The first one was the announcement of Gjoko Hadjievski, Vardar’s director of football, that he will no longer be part of Vardar’s staff. Andreyev’s post is safe at the moment. As for the players, Vardar are in touch with national team members and former Vardar players Boban Grncharov and Nikola Gligorov. They haven’t officially signed yet, but it seems highly likely they will wear the red and black jersey in the next season. Former Metalurg man Blagoja Ljamcevski is the first player who has officially joined Vardar so far. At the same time, Ivanovski, Petrov and Tanevski will extend their contracts for Vardar, while the likes of Bojović, Reljić, Trninić, Lovrečič, Simjanoski, Zahov, Dimitrovski, Lazarevski, Gjorgiev who got back to Horizont Turnovo, will not be Vardar players any longer. This means a lot of players will need to be brought in and Vardar is looking into Simonovski and Mecinovikj as some of the possible replacements.
At the same time, Pelister who was on top of the table with 8 rounds to go and eventually ended on the 6th place has similar destiny, but in the departures part. Bulgarian internationals Vodenicharov, Kovachev, Hristov, Dinchev and Lyubenov have left the club but no new signings have been announced. If Vardar has a private owner in Samsonenko, Pelister still has no owner or sponsor and only rely on municipality money which are obviously not enough for the creation of a competitive squad. After the departures of Kitanovski, Altiparmakovski and Stênio Júnior during past half-season, now Pelister also loses these 5 players and it remains to be seen who will replace these players.