Miljan Miljanic: Serbian footballer who went on to coach Real Madrid, Yugoslavia and Red Star Belgrade
Thursday 19 January 2012
Miljan Miljanic, who died on 13 January at the age of 81, was a Serbian footballer who went on to coach Real Madrid, Yugoslavia and Red Star Belgrade. It was in this latter capacity that he made a notable impact on English football.
In 1973 his Red Star side took on Bill Shankly's Liverpool in the European Cup, and comprehensive victories in both of the two legs demonstrated to Shankly that he had much to learn in the way of Continental savvy. He retreated to the famous Liverpool boot room, where he and his coaching staff worked out what needed to be done to progress in European competition. The team went on to win the European Cup four times in eight years.
Miljanic, known for his defensive tactics and reliance on experienced players, also took the Yugoslav national team to the 1974 and 1982 World Cups. He won four league titles and three cups with Red Star between 1966 and 1974 as well as successive Spanish titles and the Copa del Rey with Real Madrid.
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