Local journalist were invited to Saadiq Bey’s first interview as FK Sarajevo manager held at the Asim Ferhatovic to discuss life in Sarajevo, tactics and his vision moving forward.
Rick: Saadiq how’s life in Sarajevo?
6th Disciple: Sarajevo is a great city fill of history, culture, and diversity. Bosnians are a lovely people they’ve been warm and welcoming to me and my family.
Rick: To get down to business, what made you take this job?
6th Disciple: Well after I left Spurs I wanted to take time to think what my my next step would be. I did not want to repeat what happened in England at FK Sarajevo so my next club had to be the right fit.
Davor: I see. So what you’re saying is FK Sarajevo is a good fit. Do you think this club and league is below standard?
6th Disciple: No. I think the Premijer Lega is very competitive and fill with quality players. I’ve always admired the football and footballers from former Yugoslav republics and I am happy I get the chance to work here.
Dejan: So what if a club from one of the more prestigious leagues offered you a job and a hefty transfer budget would you stay?
6th Disciple: Rick, I think its incredibly disrespectful of you to imply this is not a worthy league or project. The club’s owner, Vincent Tan, offered me an opportunity when other clubs didn’t. So I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to prove my worth to take this club back to it’s rightful place in European football.
Dario: Ok. So what I am hearing is you’re appreciative of Vincent Tan’s trust in your ability to manage FK Sarajevo and vision it to greater heights.
6th Disciple: Correct.
442 Reporter: Tactically what can we expect to see.
6th Disciple: The philosophy is always the same but formations are interchangeable. What I mean is we will always be looking to gain positional superiority, dominate possession, defend with the ball, and look to stretch the opponent horizontally to open and overload central areas. And, players will display qualitative superiority in 1 vs 1 and combination play.
Sarajevo Times: @totalfootball71, @FM_Grasshopper and @fmcatenaccio are rumored to be joining your backroom staff. Can you confirm this for our readers?
6th Disciple: As much as I would love each them to be part of my staff. They’re deep intheir own projects at SS Lazio, Estudiantes, and Internazionale. However, I will say they will be consulting me on a variety of topics.
John Cross: I want to know if this a charity project and if youre intending to win your way back into the Premiere League?
6th Disciple: John this isn’t England and this is an entirely different project and your question is disrespectful to Mr. Tan and the FK Sarajevo supporters. Next question.
JC: You speak highly of this philosophy you named “The Synthesis” how are intending to implementing this system?
6th Disciple: My predecessor, Husref Musemić, laid the foundation for me to work with a group of intelligent, skilled, and technical players with a desire to win. Fitness is a core component of our training, as well as, defending, ball control, and learning to read the game situations.
JC: No disrespect you sound like an American version of Bielsa and van Gaal. And we know how things ended for them.
6th Disciple: Profe Bielsa and Mr. van Gaal are mentors and teachers so what you’re hearing is discipleship. Next question?
Gary Neville: Hi Saadiq thanks for the lovely invitation and time in Sarajevo. I’ve had the honor of playing against sides managed by your mentors what will you do different from them?
6th Disciple: First, (laughing) neither of them managed in Bosnia-Herzogovina. Second, early I plan on tweaking a thing or two, such as playing a highly structured system until the players internalize the training methodology. In the early days of training I think it is important to arrest individual talents for the overall collective. My training methods are frustrating to creative players because I’m asking them to do things that are unnatural. If the player perseveres he will have a deeper understanding of the game.
GN: What formations are you using? recently you’ve moved to a 4-3-3.
6th Disciple: 4-1-4-1, 4-3-1-2, 4-2-1-3, and 4-1-3-2 Each of these formation is a variation of 4-3-3 or 4-5-1. I said earlier formations are interchangeable but the philosophy remains. I’ll take a one more question.
GN: Why those formations?
6th Disciple: In the long-term each formation will offer us tactical flexibility to dominate central areas, stretch the opponent horizontally, and use our qualitative superiority to create 1 vs 1s. Ok thank you for coming and for great questions. Have a great afternoon.
The press conference has evoked conversation between the various journalist who attended. They seem optimistic and hopeful the 6th Disciple is successful at FK Sarajevo, most believed he was dismissed prematurely at Tottenham. The press officer sent them away with packet showing results so far and they’re astonished by what is taking place at the club.
FK Sarajevo Press Kit
Squad and Formations
Training: Team and Individual
Europa League Qualifiying, BH Preijer League, and Kup B & H