Albanian 'twins' help Lugano fight for a top spot in Swiss Super League

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times April 25, 2017 11:06

Albanian 'twins' help Lugano fight for a top spot in Swiss Super League

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  • Nicknamed the ‘twins,’ the strikers have often found themselves in the week's top line-up as the best strikers.

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TIRANA, April 25 - A trio with a link to Albania are helping Switzerland's Lugano fight for a place in the Europa League. Back in January 2017 just before Albania international Armando Sadiku and Albania's assistant coach Paolo Tramezzani moved to Lugano, the Swiss side was struggling just off the relegation zone. Four months later, Lugano find themselves in a comfortable position, ranking fifth, trailing third-placed Sion by only five points and in the race for a place in the UEFA Europa League with seven other games to go.

A series of victories under former Albania assistant coach Tramezzani and goals by Albania international Armando Sadiku and Macedonia international with Albanian roots Ezgjan Alioski helped Lugano regain a deserved placed in top Swiss league.

Coach Tramezzani is worried his top two strikers could leave the club by the end of the season considering their performance with Alioski being the league's second best scorer with 15 goals and Armando Sadiku having scored 7 goals in 10 appearances.

"I believe that for one reason or another Alioski and Sadiku will play for only a short time with Lugano. With deep regret as I regard them two wonderful men, I think it's fair that they target an important career," Tramezzani, the Albania coach De Biazi's chief assistant for five years until early 2017, has said.

The 25-year-old Albanian striker joined Lugano last January after spending the first half of the season with his Zurich club which seems on track for a return to the Swiss Super League.

Having played in Switzerland since 2011, Sadiku has not hidden his ambition to play for a top club and is even trying to get a Bulgarian passport to escape tough non-EU player rules in top European leagues.

"Of course if we are still together, next year we will fight for a top spot. However, we now have to focus on the seven remaining games and let's wait and see what happens later," Sadiku has said.

Having scored seven goals with the national side, including one in the first-ever European championship appearance against Romania at the Euro 2016, Sadiku has been a reference point in Albania's attack in the past couple of years.

Alioski who has been playing with Lugano since 2016, says he has a special relation with Sadiku.

"We have a wonderful relation. We easily find each other on and off the pitch. We both help each other," says the 25-year-old Macedonia striker of Albanian roots.

In the opening World Cup qualifier with Macedonia last September Alioski equalized Sadiku's opener before Bekim Balaj scored a late winner the following day after the match was abandoned due to torrential rain.

Nicknamed the 'twins,' the strikers have often found themselves in the week's top line-up as the best strikers.

Neighbouring Albania and Macedonia find themselves fourth and fifth in group G of the World Cup qualifiers, having bid adieu to their qualification bids in a tough group stage that also features former world champions Italy and Spain.

Tirana Times
By Tirana Times April 25, 2017 11:06