Stefan Savic may not be the most popular man at Fiorentina right now.
The Montenegro international has put a disappointing spell at Manchester City well and truly behind him this season, as he stars for Viola in their quest for UEFA Champions League qualification. Vincenzo Montella’s side are in fourth place in Serie A, two points behind Milan in third spot.
Savic, who only made 11 league appearances during his one year in England, has already made 20 for his current club, and is regarded as one of the best young defenders in the country. However, he is unlikely to be given a warm reception upon his return from World Cup duty, having suggested his compatriot Stevan Jovetic could be a big hit for City.
Roberto Mancini is looking to shake up his attacking options at the Etihad Stadium, and has already offloaded Mario Balotelli to Milan in a £20million deal. Edin Dzeko, the Bosnian international, has also been tipped to leave during the summer window, whilst Carlos Tevez could yet be sold as he enters the final 12 months of his contract.
City are one of several leading clubs who have been linked with Jovetic, who has scored 12 goals in 24 league appearances this term. And although his current contract runs until the summer of 2016, Savic believes the striker could do a lot worse than to head to Manchester when the window opens.
“Jovetic can play for one of the top clubs,” said the 22-year-old. “I hope he does because he is one of my closest friends. I would recommend City to him. I think City’s a rising team, one of the best clubs in Europe. They will win trophies and be in the Champions League every year.
“He has five years experience, he could play straight away with Sergio Aguero or Carlos Tevez. He is a second striker, similar to (Wayne) Rooney because he’s good with the ball, gifted technically and intelligent. Off the pitch he is a quiet guy, but on it he fights.”
Jovetic, 23, has also been linked with a move to Arsenal when the window reopens, as Arsene Wenger finally looks to spend big in an attempt to return the Gunners into genuine title contenders. But if they can’t offer the forward Champions League football, this would make City clear favourites to land the player for a fee likely to be around £25million.
Speaking ahead of Montenegro’s crucial World Cup qualifier against England in Podgorica on Tuesday night, the Fiorentina striker admits he has heard the speculation linking him with a summer transfer to the Premier League, and can’t deny that he is flattered by the interest.
“It sure is nice when you are interesting big clubs like Arsenal and Manchester City,” Jovetic told the Daily Star Sunday. “I’m very comfortable in Italy but the Premier League is at the top of the football world – and perhaps the best. Who knows? Maybe one day I will be playing in England.”