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Hearts star Adrian Mrowiec: Capital clash is tame compared with Krakow derby

Aug 28 2011 Gavin Berry, Sunday Mail

Wislaw Krakow fans are renowned for burning the scarves of their rivals Cracovia

ADRIAN MROWIEC used to play in a derby dubbed the Holy War because of its ferocious rivalry.

So the Hearts midfielder believes taking on Hibs in a battle for Edinburgh supremacy is NICE in comparison.

Passions have been known to run high when the capital clubs come together but Mrowiec insists it's nothing like the chaos that ensues when Krakow's bitter enemies meet in Poland's top flight.

It may not be as well-known as other derbies but Wisla Krakow v MKS Cracovia is arguably the most intense match in the world - with many fans dying during ugly clashes over the years.

And former Wisla starlet Mrowiec is glad he's now part of a healthier rivalry.

Ahead of today's game at Tynecastle, the Pole said: "I enjoy the atmosphere around this fixture but it doesn't compare to the games in Krakow.

"The fans in Edinburgh can walk together in the same street but in Krakow it cannot be done. Someone would be killed because there is lots of trouble.

"Every policeman from the region comes out for these derbies and there is fighting in the street. The atmosphere in the Edinburgh derby is very nice compared to that. It is easier.

"On the pitch it is the same but with the supporters it's different. Five years ago one or two fans were killed and there was a lot of talk about the incident.

"It was outside the stadium and difficult for everyone to deal with. Maybe it's easier now in Poland but five or six years ago there was trouble. I watched one of our games with Hibs from the stand at Easter Road and everything was okay. So it's better in Scotland."

Today's clash will be Paulo Sergio's first taste of Edinburgh's big game since taking over from Jim Jefferies as manager.

And Mrowiec revealed his side's preparation is much more thorough under the Portuguese coach.

In a thinly-veiled attack on former boss Jeff 's methods, the Pole claimed the squad now have a better understanding of what is expected of them.

The 27-year-old said: "Paulo Sergio a good manager. We work more on tactics. In training we look at what we have to do. We had problems with this before - how we had to move, where we had to run.

"But now everyone understands and this is much better.

"When the new gaffer came in we started to work on tactics and movement straight away. He told us what he wanted and how we had to work.

"We've been working for three weeks on this and are now playing many more passes. We're not just looking for a long ball to the striker.

"I hope in the end it will be OK because everyone is happy.

"Of course, we miss Jim. He stayed with us for 18 months and picked me for the team so I need to thank him. But things change in life and I hope the new manager can take the entire club to a different level. We haven't started well this season but we have time, more than 30 games. Things will settle down with the new gaffer."

Mrowiec came on as a sub in midweek as Hearts restored some Europa League pride in London with a 0-0 draw against Spurs on the back of their 5-0 drubbing in the first leg.

Now the midfielder hopes he has done enough to land a starting slot in the first derby of the new SPL campaign.

The Jambos have ruled the roost in the city for the past few seasons and Mrowiec is desperate to stay on top.

He said: "This is a very important game. We've mostly been winning these derbies even though we drew in the last one.

"We have to do the same this season and keep up our good record.

"We played well collectively and individually on Thursday. Everyone did what the manager said before the game and our rhythm was good.

"The Europa League has finished so we can concentrate on the league and try to get back in Europe again.

"I hope to play in the derby but the boys in the side have done well and I'll have to see what the manager decides."

Taken from the Daily Record

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