Thursday October 25 2018
Ilicic: 'The illness changed me'

Atalanta and Slovenia star Josip Ilicic confessed his mystery illness “changed me. I realised football isn’t everything in life.”

It has never been entirely clarified what he was suffering from over the summer, but it was reportedly a bacterial infection of the lymph nodes.

He was in and out of hospital, on various drips and antibiotics until the right treatment was found.

“In those two months on antibiotics, I realised football isn’t everything in life,” Ilicic told the official Atalanta website.

“At times people get angry over nothing, but that illness changed me. I didn’t even want to watch the games. My family, teammates and the Coach stood by me, then once I recovered, it was an issue of finding match fitness.”

He certainly made his mark on Chievo, scoring a hat-trick in the 5-1 victory.

“The goals were unexpected, but sometimes the small things can make all the difference for a striker. We have to play with a smile, that’s the most important thing.”

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