Miroslav Ćiro Blažević, the first person to receive the “Vladimir Beara” Award, which is given by the Sports Recreational Society of Serbs in Croatia, said that he had given more for this particular award than for any of the ones he had previously received. As for Beara, Ćiro said that he had remained humble as the greatest goalkeeper of all time in this region.
I have received many awards, but I would really love it if you would believe me that this award is my favourite one, said a visibly moved Miroslav Ćiro Blažević upon receiving the “Vladimir Beara” Award given to him by the Sports Recreational Society of Serbs in Croatia.
Ćiro is the first person ever to be given this award, which is handed out for the development of sports culture and social tolerance.
In a short, but emotion-packed speech, enriched with his typical swear word that is not a swear word per se, Blažević said that he had given more for this particular award than he had for any of the other ones he had previously received. He also touched upon Vladimir Beara, the legendary goalkeeper of Hajduk, Crvena Zvezda, and the Yugoslav national team.
– I have no words to describe what that world-class goalkeeper meant to me as a young man. Beara remained a modest giant, and he is the greatest goalkeeper of all time in this region – said Blažević.
The “coach of all coaches,” as he had been called for many years, the 88-year-old Ćiro also briefly remarked on his health condition, which he has been talking about a lot lately. “It’s over Ćiro. It’s over, you fag,” he said.
Special medals were presented to the players and coaches of the Serbian football representation in Croatia, which won fifth place at this year’s Europeada, a football tournament for indigenous and national minorities, organised in Austria. The secretary of the Sports Recreational Society of Serbs in Croatia, Tatjana Dragičević, deemed their result excellent, considering the fact that this was only the second time that the team had participated in the tournament.
However, Europeada goes beyond sports, it emphasises cooperation and friendship, which the Serb football team from Croatia achieved together with their colleagues and friends, the Croats from Serbia.
Boris Milošević, an honorary member of the Sports Recreational Society of Serbs in Croatia, said that Europeada was more than just a kind of sports friendship. Regarding the newly established award, he said that there was no better name for it than Beara’s, a man who had always remained firm and upright, regardless of the injustice and underestimating he had experienced. About the receiver of the “Vladimir Beara” Award, Miroslav Ćiro Blažević, Milošević said that he “loves his homeland, is a great patriot, a lover of his kin and folk, who has never once encouraged hatred, but only sports rivalry.”
The president of the Serb National Council (SNV), Milorad Pupovac, said that the award had been named after a great man and that it was being presented to another great man. Comparing Beara and Blažević, Pupovac said that Beara had stood out for his goalkeeping instinct and energy, while Blažević stood out for his coaching instinct, as well as his energy.
The president of the Croatian Olympic Committee, Zlatko Mateša, also attended the ceremony held on Friday evening at the Journalist Centre (Novinarski dom).