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EURO dreams tempt Matusiak home

Published: Thursday 7 February 2008, 19.34CET
New Wisła Kraków striker Radosław Matusiak is one of several Polish internationals changing clubs in order to secure more playing time ahead of UEFA EURO 2008™.
by Pawel Dimow
from Krakow

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Published: Thursday 7 February 2008, 19.34CET

EURO dreams tempt Matusiak home

New Wisła Kraków striker Radosław Matusiak is one of several Polish internationals changing clubs in order to secure more playing time ahead of UEFA EURO 2008™.

Poland striker Radosław Matusiak hopes a loan move to Wisła Kraków will boost his UEFA EURO 2008™ chances after his switch back to GKS Bełchatów collapsed.

Year abroad
With the domestic transfer window open until the end of February, much remains to be resolved in the Ekstraklasa, though perhaps the most significant move will be Matusiak's to league leaders Wisła. Having left Bełchatów last January to play for Italy's US Città di Palermo then SC Heerenveen in the Netherlands, the 26-year-old has endured a stop-start 12 months.

Deal breaker
So when Matusiak announced on 31 January that he was rejoining Bełchatów, a happy homecoming appeared in prospect: "I want to play in the UEFA European Championship but this will only happen if I regain my old form. I would like to prepare well for this tournament and, at Bełchatów, I have the opportunity to do so." A disagreement over personal terms soon changed that tune, however.

Missing touch
Then, on Thursday, Wisła confirmed that Matusiak has secured a six-month loan from Heerenveen, which should help him seal a place in Leo Beenhakker's Poland squad for this summer's finals in Austria and Switzerland. With five goals in 12 internationals, he can only hope his touch returns as he resumes Ekstraklasa duties after his lean spell abroad.

Contract rebel
Matusiak's arrival provides consolation for Wisła after winger Kamil Kosowski left the club by mutual consent. The 30-year-old had come back to Wisła after stints with 1. FC Kaiserslautern, Southampton FC and AC Chievo Verona, yet last month failed to agree terms on a contract beyond the summer. Consequently, he was released by Wisła six months early, ending up at Spanish second-division side Cádiz CF.

Free agent
A Poland place was also in goalkeeper Wojciech Kowalewski's mind when he signed for Korona Kielce on a free transfer. The 30-year-old was made available by FC Spartak Moskva having not played a Russian Premier-Liga game in 2007, and with no international outings since last February, he accepted a three-year deal with Korona.

EURO goal
Two other Polish internationals have changed clubs with a view to getting match practice before UEFA EURO 2008™. Maciej Żurawski left Celtic FC to land in Greece with Larissa FC while fellow forward Grzegorz Rasiak went from second-tier Southampton to English Premier League and UEFA Cup contenders Bolton Wanderers FC.

Last updated: 08/02/08 12.44CET

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