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Season review: Montenegro

Published: Thursday 19 June 2014, 8.01CET
Broken ducks, milestones and the emergence of a 17-year-old compared to Gareth Bale were among the highlights of the 2013/14 Montenegrin First League season.
by Aleksandar Radović
from Podgorica
Season review: Montenegro
Sutjeska players had plenty of reason to celebrate this season ©Vijesti
Published: Thursday 19 June 2014, 8.01CET

Season review: Montenegro

Broken ducks, milestones and the emergence of a 17-year-old compared to Gareth Bale were among the highlights of the 2013/14 Montenegrin First League season.

The 2013/14 season was one for milestones in Montenegro: FK Sutjeska became the first club to win successive top-flight titles, FK Lovćen claimed their maiden trophy – in their centenary year – and FK Budućnost Podgorica finished outside the top two for the first time.

Champions: FK Sutjeska
Dragan Radojičić's team were top from the 13th round of fixtures onwards. It was not all plain sailing, however, three defeats and five draws in the second half of the campaign threatening to derail their bid. Lovćen were at the summit early on following nine wins and four draws and were just a point adrift going into their penultimate game – at Sutjeska. A 1-1 draw meant the champions' 4-0 defeat of FK Dečić on the final day sufficed. "All credit to my players, as they were brave enough to fight and believe when we were almost knocked down," said Radojičić.

Cup final: FK Lovćen 1-0 FK Mladost Podgorica
Draško Božović's goal three minutes after the interval earned Lovćen their maiden piece of silverware and a first taste of European football. "This is a dream come true and reward for our hard work and great commitment during the whole season," said Lovćen captain Vladan Tatar.

European places*
FK Sutjeska – UEFA Champions League second qualifying round
FK Lovćen – UEFA Europa league first qualifying round
FK Čelik Nikšić – UEFA Europa league first qualifying round
FK Budućnost Podgorica – UEFA Europa league first qualifying round

*Subject to final confirmation by UEFA

Player of the year: Stefan Mugoša (FK Mladost Podgorica)
Despite playing in a side battling relegation, Mugoša, a 22-year-old forward, showed himself to be one of Montenegrin football's hottest properties. The division's leading scorer with 15 goals, Mugoša has also found the net five times during his country's UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying campaign. In the voting for the best XI from the Montenegrin First League – when 247 players have their say – Mugoša received 202 votes, more than any other player.

One to watch: Andrija Vukčević (FK Budućnost Podgorica)
Vukčević, just 17, posted 30 top-flight appearances in his debut season at senior level. Though his physical attributes and sound technique enabled him to play every position on the left side, his speed makes him particularly dangerous on the wing. Indeed his style has earned him the moniker of 'The Montenegrin Bale' among the local media.

Surprise package: FK Budućnost Podgorica
Despite finishing outside the top two for the first time, Budućnost can be positive about this transitional season. They negotiated the campaign with just two players aged over 23 and a whole host of 16 to 20-year-olds. They claimed fourth spot, above more experienced teams such as OFK Petrovac and FK Rudar Pljevlja. "They showed big potential, because they didn't have any pressure," said sporting director Nikola Jovanović. "Fourth place was above our expectations, because our aim was to build a team for the future."

Leading scorer: Stefan Mugoša, FK Mladost Podgorica (15)

Relegated: FK Dečić, FK Mornar

Promoted: FK Bokelj, FK Berane

Number: 4
Ivan Janjušević has won four of the eight Montenegrin titles on offer. He was twice a champion with FK Mogren, in 2009 and 2011, and has now clinched successive championships with Sutjeska.

"I must confess that Lovćen played better than us for most of the season. However, we lost only four times and no one can say we didn't deserve this title."
Sutjeska's leading marksman Srdjan Radonjić reflects on his side's triumph

Last updated: 19/06/14 11.21CET

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