Sreck: My Slov af­fair is not over quite yet

Daily Star Sunday - - RESULT! - By SCOTT BURNS

DE­FI­ANT Srecko Katanec is adamant Slove­nia can still qual­ify for the World Cup and will be go­ing all out to bring down Scot­land.

The Slove­ni­ans cur­rently look like the Group F out­siders in the fight to claim sec­ond spot be­hind win­ners Eng­land.

Scot­land know a win in Ljub­jana this even­ing would seal that prize but if they were to lose then Slo­vakia would be in the mix for a play-off spot with a last-day vic­tory over Malta.

Slove­nia would need to beat the Scots, hope Malta stun the Slo­vaks and then keep their fin­gers crossed that they would have enough points to fin­ish as one of the best sec­ond-placed teams.

Katanec, who will step down at the end of this cam­paign, said: “The ex­pec­ta­tions are the same as ev­ery other game.

“We have a math­e­mat­i­cal chance to qual­ify and, as long as that is the case, we will do our best.

“We are well pre­pared and the at­mos­phere within the squad is good.

“I be­lieve and I wish that we will do our part and hope for the best in Slo­vakia.”

Katanec, 54, con­firmed he was go­ing to re­sign af­ter Thurs­day’s late de­feat to Eng­land.

He has come un­der fire for a poor qual­i­fy­ing cam­paign and fail­ing to reach the pre­vi­ous heights of his last stint in charge when he led Slove­nia to Euro 2000 and World Cup 2002.

Katanec re­fused to say why he was step­ping down.

When asked, he said: “Some of the Slove­nian jour­nal­ists who have been try­ing to un­der­mine me over the past are not here.

“I don’t want to go into de­tails now.

“I won’t dis­cuss my sit­u­a­tion while we are still in a po­si­tion to qual­ify but I have per­sonal prob­lems that I need to deal with and I will speak about it later.

“I will ex­plain my de­ci­sion af­ter the game.”

Katanec also in­sisted he would not walk out on Slove­nia un­til af­ter Rus­sia if they made it to the fi­nals.

“There is no ques­tion of me not stay­ing un­til the cam­paign is fin­ished,” he added. “If we qual­ify for the play-offs, I will be there. If we qual­ify for the World Cup, I will be there.”

MINE’S A G & D: Craig Gor­don and Dar­ren Fletcher

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