“I wasn’t prepared at that moment to play there.”explained to EFE Stefan Savic, a leader today of the Atletico Madridof his passage through the manchester city in 2011-12, when he was only 20 years old, under the command of roberto manciniwith 22 matches played, but with indispensable experience in his career, when he grew and learned every day against Carlos Tevez, Mario Balotelli, Edin Dzeko and Kun Aguero, when that team was proclaimed champion of the ‘Premier League’ 44 years later.
“Playing every day and training against strikers like those, you can only grow”exposes the Montenegrin central, who is reunited with City with the hierarchy that has given him his subsequent tour of 334 games between Fiorentina, which was his next destination, and Atlético de Madrid, of which he is already a captain with armband (in the third step), although it was already before without the need to wear it, so transcendent and ascendant within the locker room for his teammates. He is already 31 years old. She was 20 then.
A decade has passed since that promising centre-back, who had already made his international debut with Montenegro a year earlier, in August 2010, with only 19 (later 60 more games with his team followed), burst into Manchester city from the Belgrade Partisan to be under the command of Mancini.
He had already played the Champions League. And he was champion of the Serbian League and Cup. “I got an offer from Manchester City and I went out to play in England. It was a bit difficult for me to change Serbia for England. He was very young,” explained Savic, who was competing for a spot with Vincent Kompany, Kolo Touré, Gael Clichy or Joleon Lescott, in defense, sometimes four, others three, which was then proposed by today’s Italian coach.
“I worked with Mancini that year in England. He is a very good coach, who has a lot of experience. I learned a lot working with him, working with a team, Manchester City, that had very important players at the time. We won the Premier that year”, rewound the center-back, who had gone through stages very early, at full speed, since he started playing with six years in Montenegro to, at 16, sign for Partizan.
With 20 he was in the ‘Premier’ and in the City that would lift the title of champion of the English League that same course 44 years later. He hadn’t won it since 1967-68. Until 2011-12. The media also played on that team David Silva, Yaya Touré, James Milner and Samir Nasri or the aforementioned strikers Carlos Tevez, Sergio Aguero, Edin Dzeko and Mario Balotelli. A great team that finished first in the tournament for better goal difference with Manchester United on equal points, both with 89, with 28 wins, 5 draws and 5 losses.
On the last day, at the last moment, Agüero scored the league goalin the 93rd minute, at their stadium, to break the tie against Queens Park Rangers (3-2), when pessimism was already felt throughout all the stands, with the public already resigned to a cruel outcome, to lose the tournament for which he had competed so much against United, until the final appearance of the Argentine striker, who gave City the title. That day, Savic did not play.
He participated in eleven league games that year (in addition to two in the Champions League, one in the Europa League, one in the English Cup and five in the League Cup), five of them as a starter. “I think it was too soon for me. Or they didn’t have enough patience. For other players, going from the Spanish league to the English Premier League is not easy. For me, going from Serbia either,” he recalled in the past to EFE.
“I think he was not physically ready for the Premier at that time. and they didn’t have the patience with a young player either, but it was a nice opportunity,” added the footballer.
“I added 22 games, but I felt that I was not ready at this moment to play there. She wanted to go out and get experience. Fiorentina’s offer arrived. And I accepted it (…). I decided to go to Fiorentina because I had only played 20 games for City and Mancini told me I would have the same role. At 20 years old I told him that he needed to play. I went to Italy. It was an important decision for me”, Savic abounded, today an Atlético leader in his reunion with City.