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When Croatian third-tier outfit NK Slavonija were trailing 2-0 to NK Tomislav at half-time of their last league game, manager Goran Uzelac decided to make one drastic change at the interval.
After giving his side a bit of a grilling, he then proceed to make a substitution. And because he operates as a player-coach, he elected to thrust himself into the game in an attempt to get something.
It worked absolute wonders. Uzelac was the hero upon entering the fray, notching a hat-trick to complete a remarkable turnaround and ensure his side gained a vital victory.
Goran Uzelac, coach of a third tier Croatian side that were losing 2-0, subbed himself on at half-time and scored a hat-trick to win 3-2. Super Frank will be getting ideas :joy: #mmlove pic.twitter.com/URnsmveiUv
- Mario Melchiot (@MarioMelchiot) August 30, 2018
NK Slavonija in Croatia were trailing 2-0 at half time against NK Tomislav! :thumbsdown:
During half-time, Slavonija's player manager subs himself on! :alarm_clock:
Slavonija boss, Goran Uzelac bags himself a hat-trick to win his team the match! :white_check_mark:
You couldn't make it up! :joy: pic.twitter.com/B6vNQfuIVI
- Oddschanger (@Oddschanger) August 30, 2018
As far as inspired substitutions go, there really aren't many better. He's simply gone, "I'll show you how it's done!" to his players, put his kit on and done the absolute business.
But even better, Uzelac was very selfless in his post-match interview, barely even talking about himself at all and stressing how much character they showed.
"If someone offered us a point we would take it without thinking, what can I tell you after winning against Tomislava?" he is quoted as saying by thedailystar.net.
:flag_hr: Co robi trener, gdy drużyna przegrywa 0:2 do przerwy?
Można wpuścić się samemu na boisko i strzelić hat-tricka na 3:2, jak Goran Uzelac z NK Slavonija (IV liga) :no_mouth:
W razie czego podpowiadamy: Ricardo Sá Pinto też kiedyś nieźle grał w piłkę. pic.twitter.com/gi6qBTy0gJ
- TotolotekPL (@TotolotekPL) August 30, 2018
"When we were promoted I announced that we would be competitive in this league and here we showed that. We also showed a character.
"After going down to 2-0, in the dressing room we agreed not to surrender, to try and reverse it and here we have succeeded. I congratulate my boys on a great game, a fight and a win that means a lot for us to continue this season."
Player-managers are becoming a dying breed in the modern game but kudos to Uzelac for flying the flag with distinction.