The Prva Liga maybe only three games old but HNK Hajduk Split are already searching for their third coach following a turbulent start to the campaign at home and abroad.
Ante Miše began the new season at the Hajduk helm but after an opening draw against NK Osijek was followed up with a 1-0 home loss to NK Zadar, he resigned, saying simply: "I congratulate Zadar's players and I resign." The club moved quickly to install HNK Šibenik's Ivica Kalinić, who enthusiastically took up the challenge. "I know I've come in at a difficult moment, but I have a plan and a vision. It's a big honour for me but I have a lot of work to do."
However, the 53-year-old was taken ill during his side's UEFA Europa League third qualifying round decider against MŠK Žilina and was left fighting for his life after suffering a heart attack while in hospital. Although Kalinić is now in a stable condition, he is likely to retire or, at least, take a long break from the game. Therefore, the club – who have one point from three league games and were knocked out of European competition 2-1 on aggregate by Žilina – are again searching for a new face to take the reins, with stability the aim.
One man who will not be taking up the vacant position, though, is Zlatko Dalić. The 42-year-old was touted as a possible replacement for Miše after sitting on the coaching staff during Hajduk's run to the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals in 1995. After Hajduk plumped for Kalinić, though, Dalić accepted an offer from NK Slaven Koprivnica, another club whose involvement in the UEFA Europa League was ended last week.
Slaven Koprivnica director Robert Markulin said: "Dalić is a young but experienced coach and our goal for him is to develop and assimilate the young players and we are sure we will succeed in that." The former HNK Rijeka and NK Varteks coach added: "This is an ambitious club providing good working conditions. My ambitions are also high and I will do anything to improve the team's play."
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