Slovenia’s national football team has qualified for the European Championship in Germany, marking their first appearance on the continent after 24 years of waiting. Matjaž Kek, the coach who led them to this historic achievement, will be remembered as the most successful Slovenian coach.
Kek secured a visa for the Euros with a thrilling 2-1 victory over Kazakhstan in the last qualifying round at home. The goals were scored by Benjamin Šeško and Benjamin Verbić, while Orazov scored for Kazakhstan. Despite some dangerous threats from Kazakhstan, Slovenia never lost control of the match.
After the match, Kek was overcome with emotion as he looked back on what had been a long and challenging journey for his team. “Joy, we are happy and proud,” he said. “I think we deserved this and thank all of Slovenia for the enormous positive energy.” He went on to say that he hoped this achievement would serve as a new source of motivation for Slovenian football and thanked everyone involved in making it happen.
During his tenure as coach of Slovenia’s national team, Kek faced criticism from many people who doubted whether Slovenia had the quality to compete at major events like the World Cup and Euros. However, he proved them all wrong with his unwavering belief in his team’s abilities. His contract expires after the Euros, but he doesn’t know yet if he will stay or move on to another project. For now, however, he is enjoying this momentous occasion and looking forward to what lies ahead.
The draw for the Euros is still several months away, but one thing is certain: Slovenia will be there. And Kek couldn’t be happier about it.
It is important to note that despite his successes as a coach, Kek remains humble about his achievements and credits much of it to his players and support staff who worked tirelessly behind him.