Friday October 9 2020
Djuricic: 'I said no to Milan'

Filip Djuricic feels ‘at home’ at Sassuolo, admits he rejected a move to Milan and claims the Neroverdi play ‘the football of the future.

The former Sampdoria attacking midfielder has impressed under the guidance of Roberto De Zerbi and revealed former coach Marco Giampaolo overlooked him.

“I feel at home here, I have played in more stressful clubs like Benfica and Sampdoria,” he told La Gazzetta dello Sport. “In every situation there are positive and negative things.

“Giampaolo didn’t see me. It’s a shame because the way we played was perfect for my characteristics. It happens.”

But Djuricic has impressed since he moved from Sampdoria to Sassuolo in July 2018, contributing eight goals and seven assists in 58 games for the Neroverdi.

“Everything works, starting with a serious and organised club, who always follows an idea,” he added. “With Sassuolo I play on the wing.

“At left, to enter and shoot with the right. In other teams, I moved behind the strikers, a more difficult role.

“The pressing, the way we play behind the lines, the short passes and two touches. Each step has its own logic.

“I look at Guardiola’s [Manchester] City and I see many things we do too, but we can also look for different alternatives.

“Let’s take the long ball from Ferrari for my goal at Sampdoria, it wasn’t a coincidence. It’s a movement we try many times in training.

“It’s a football that everyone might not understand, but it’s the future.”

The 28-year-old admitted Marco van Basten tried to convince him of a move to Milan, but the Serbia international said he ‘didn’t feel ready’ at the time.

“I said no, Milan were in a crisis. I didn’t feel ready.”

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