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Dejan Radonjic praises spirit of his players amid financial problems as he waves goodbye to Crvena Zvzeda

After a successful season that saw them win the Adriatic and Serbian League double plus come within a whisker of reaching the EuroLeague Playoffs following a stunning run that saw them go seven games unbeaten at one stage, Crvena Zvezda head coach Dejan Radonjic has decided not to renew his contract.

That means that the search for a new head coach in the Serbian capital begins in what could be the most important season in the club’s history as they look towards next season’s EuroLeague Final Four, which is held in Belgrade’s Kombank Arena; Crvena Zvezda’s home floor.

“Tonight my contract expires and I am no longer the head coach of KK Crvena Zvezda,” Radonjic said to Novosti. “Much needs to be done in Zvezda going forward.”

The 47-year-old joined Red Star from Montenegrin giants Buducnost in 2013. He is currently the head coach of the Montenegro national team as well.

Through Radonjic, Red Star were undoubtedly the hottest team in the EuroLeague, racking up seven straight wins, the most in their history. They ended the season with a winning record of 16-14 but lost out on a spot in the post-season on the final day when they fell to Darussafaka Dogus, who claimed the final Playoff spot.

Crvena Zvezda were in the top four of the EuroLeague table before fading away in the latter stages, eventually missing out on the final post-season spot. Photo: EuroLeague Basketball.

It brought an unfortunate end to their campaign but Crvena Zvezda made up for it by winning the Serbian league by beating FMP 87-57 to complete a sweep of their best-of-five finals.

Finishing the season on a high note was a priority for Radonjic and he credited the players who have battled all season long through financial issues that have been well documented, with the club even taking to its own social media platforms for assistance.

“It was difficult because of various things during the season and no matter what, we demonstrated that we’re a team,” Radonjic said. “It was not easy in those kind of conditions, I was forced to be a lot around the team, because of the debts and the late payments, but we were able to show character and express loyalty. it was a moment of crisis, but we are talking about a great season and that’s why the result becomes even more important.”

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