Obradovic on players representing national team: ”That is the most beautiful thing for a club”

BELGRADE (Serbia) – The most successful European coach at club level has given a ringing endorsement of national team play during the club season.

Zeljko Obradovic welcomed the fact that so many of his Partizan NIS players had been called up to compete on the international stage during the recent window.

The legendary coach last coached on the international stage over a decade ago having previously led Yugoslavia to the silver medal at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and title triumphs at FIBA EuroBasket in 1997 and the FIBA Basketball World Cup the following year.

“Nine national team players – that is the most beautiful thing for a club. I am very satisfied to have many players who play for their countries,” Obradovic told Partizan TV. “I told them that it is a great honor, but also an obligation to play for the national team.

“I am very satisfied with the fact, and I would like everyone to be a part of national teams one day. It is proof that they are quality players and that is part of the reason they play for Partizan.”

The Belgrade-based club were responsible for six players on Serbia’s national team during the November window of the FIBA Basketball World Cup 2023 European Qualifiers ,with Aleksa Avramovic, Nemanja Dangubic, Balsa Koprivica, Alen Smailagic, Uros Trifunovic and Rade Zagorac all involved.

Rodions Kurucs went up against his club teammates in representing Latvia and Yam Madar helped Israel to an unbeaten start in Group D. Meanwhile and Dallas Moore featured for Albania in the FIBA EuroBasket 2025 Pre-Qualifiers. 

Obradovic returned to Partizan this summer after almost 30 years since last being in charge of the club following the end of his playing career in 1991.