Round of 16 of the Czech football cup MOL Cup: Baník Ostrava – Sparta Prague, November 19, 2022, Ostrava. Goalkeeper Jan Laštůvka from Ostrava.
Ostrava – Baník Ostrava has waived the services of goalkeeper Jan Laštůvka and midfielder Nemanja Kuzmanovič from the upcoming season. The pair of experienced footballers will no longer feature in the league squad for next year, the club announced. On the other hand, Slezana hired the Nigerian offensive all-rounder Abdullahi Tanko from Varnsdorf in the second division, with whom they signed a three-year contract with an option.
The management of Baník admitted that they considered the end of Laštůvka with Kuzmanović in the league squad a lot. “It was really an extremely difficult decision for us. We know how long both boys have been here, especially Honza, who started in Baník as a teenager. He won the title here and is really a player who cares about Baník. Kuzma is also here more for more than five years, he also did a lot of good work for the club. But age cannot be stopped and we feel that it is necessary to start rejuvenating the squad a little,” said the head of the Slezan sports department, Luděk Mikloško, on the club's website.
Laštůvka won the last league title with Baník in 2004, after a long engagement abroad he returned at the beginning of 2017 and helped the team to the rescue. The miner offers him a job at the club. “With his career and experience and relationship with Baník, of course we wouldn't want to lose him. It's still a matter of further negotiations between us and Honza. He also has some ideas of his own, but we would be very happy if he stayed here,” said Mikloško.< /p>
The soon-to-be forty-one-year-old goalkeeper is still hesitating whether to continue his career. “I took some time to think. I need to think it through myself if I will continue or go in a different direction,” said the former Baník captain.
The thirty-four-year-old Serb Kuzmanovič has been working in Ostrava since 2018. Now he will probably head elsewhere. “It's all a matter of further negotiations. We respect the fact that he still has a valid contract with us, and therefore any further steps must take place in mutual agreement between the club and the player. If he were to receive an interesting offer for him, we don't want to cause him any problems,” said Mikloško .
On the other hand, the Nigerian offensive player Tanko became the first summer reinforcement of the eleventh team last season. The 25-year-old forward scored 15 goals for Varnsdorf in the second division and shared second place in the scoring table. In the past, among others, he played for the Portuguese clubs Gil Vicente and Chaves.
“I am looking forward to going to the first league and to a club that has such fan support. I hope that I can establish myself in Baník and help the team goals and with his game. I know there are already a few boys from Nigeria who have made it and I want to be another one of them,” said Tanko.
“We watched his performances in the second league and he is very interesting. He has great speed equipped, straightforward, has a drive on goal. His match data is comparable to (former Baník player) Yira Sor in terms of the running side. As he established himself more and more, the interest of other Premier League clubs grew. It was quite a struggle in the end, but we acquired him at our service,” said Mikloško.
Tank's arrival could be Baník's reaction to Slavia's alleged interest in another Nigerian striker, Muhamed Tijani, who was Ostrava's best scorer in the past league season with 11 goals.< /p>