Jadran Split has started looking for a new head coach.
Mile Smodlaka, who coached Jadran since January 2020, left the first team in a mutual agreement with the club management. However, Smodlaka will stay at Jadran and work with the junior and youth teams. He coached juniors before becoming the first team’s coach.
Smodlaka won the gold at the World Championships in 2007, playing for the Croatian national team, and two Champions League as a center-forward of Jug Dubrovnik. He took over the first team of Jadran in January 2020 after Ivan Asic went to the USA. He was Ivica Tucak’s assistant in the coaching staff of Croatia between 2017 and 2020.
In the past almost three years, Jadran, with Smodlaka on the bench, played in several finals in the Croatian competitions, won the national cup (the first trophy for Jadran after three decades), and silver in the Regional League last season. But, after the convincing loss to Jug in the final of the Croatian Cup on Thursday, Smodlaka left. Three weeks before the national Cup final, Jug beat Jadran in the Croatian Super Cup.
Until a new head coach is appointed, sporting director Dean Savicevic will guide Jadran. In three days, Jadran will play against Olympiacos in the Champions League. The Split-based side arrived at the Preliminary Round of the Champions League from qualifications. After two rounds, it has three points (a win over Hannover and a loss to Pro Recco).