Poland's Smuda will tolerate bunga bunga, not booze

Reuters, Friday 8 Jun 2012

Poland coach Franciszek Smuda would rather turn a blind eye to his players enjoying 'bunga bunga' than accept his players drinking alcohol, he said on Friday

Franciszek Smuda

Smuda, whose side open Euro 2012 against Greece in the Polish capital later on Friday, has a strict no-alcohol policy and in April dropped Slawomir Peszko from the squad after the midfielder ended up in police custody following a night of drinking.

"It's better to have bunga bunga than to abuse alcohol," Smuda was quoted as saying by Polish daily Dziennik Gazeta Prawna. "Alcohol just blows my fuse."

"Bunga bunga" refers to the name that former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi bestowed on the wild parties he allegedly held with bevies of young starlets and prostitutes at his villas.

Commenting on the Peszko episode, Smuda said: "I will say it straight: you have to be a moron to do something like that."

Fiorentina keeper Artur Boruc and Legia Warsaw defender Michal Zewlakow have also been punished by Smuda's anti-alcohol crusade.

"If I gave players the impression that I'm a pushover, jelly or pudding, we would be done for. You can't show that," Smuda said.

Smuda was born in a village in Poland's southern Silesia region with strong historic links to Germany and has spent a large part of his life abroad, which helps explain why he can often appear at odds with the Polish language.

Smuda, who took the post in 2009 after Poland's failure to qualify for the World Cup in South Africa, sets the Borussia Dortmund's Polish trio - Lukasz Piszczek, Kuba Blaszczykowski and Robert Lewandowski - as the example to follow.

"In my opinion, in a moment they will be gone from Borussia," Smuda said. "'Lewy' is going to Manchester United, Kuba also somewhere in England, Piszczek to Real (Madrid)."

"They have a goal and they want to grow. I base the squad on them."

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