Tifo Scouting: Serbian Super Liga

Tifo Scouting: Serbian Super Liga

Each episode in this series will focus on
a different league. From within that league, we will suggest a handful of young, promising
talents; players you may not have heard of yet but may well be hearing from in the future.
We’ll be looking not just at their strengths and weaknesses, but also their current teams’
systems and their suitability for that system, in order to make suggestions for their ideal
future team. But bear in mind, our suggested ‘ideal teams’ are chosen based on their
tactical systems and not their level or quality of play. Today’s league is the Serbian Super Liga. Jočić is a technically gifted, unselfish
player who has been deployed as a central attacking midfielder or an inverted winger
coming inside from the left. His technical excellence means he excels at creating space
for his teammates, collecting the ball between the lines in a way that makes defenders leave
their assigned positions, then playing a quick, one-touch pass into the space. He works well
with overlapping full backs, as when he comes inside he can attract the full back who’s
marking him, as well as drawing a centre back towards him. Jočić’s physical ability
also means his dynamism carries an edge, because he can move quickly after passing and hold
players off while playing one-twos. Jočić’s numbers don’t leap out – we
don’t have stats for the Serbian Super Liga’s U19s – but in last year’s UEFA U17s European
Championships he managed 0.42 goals per 90, 0.83 shots per 90 at 50% accuracy, 0.83 dribbles
per 90, and 7 forwards passes per 90 at 47% accuracy. Nothing in those stats would indicate
just how good Jočić is and can be, and it’s hard to rank him on the basis of them. Nonetheless,
Jočić is a real talent. Because of his intelligence and awareness,
Jočić wouldn’t find it hard to adapt to any particular style. He’s played as the
10 in a 4-2-3-1, as an inverted left winger in a 4-4-2, and even as the more attacking
central midfielder in a 4-1-4-1. He would suit teams that play as a 4-2-3-1
or a narrow 4-3-3 where he plays on the left, and teams that play a fluid, possessional
style, based on quick interchanges of pass and move football. Because of his movement,
he’d suit a side that doesn’t play with a false nine, as there might be a clustering
of players between the lines, but Jočić is likely smart enough to adapt. Ideal types of team: Ajax, Tottenham Hotspur Njegoš Petrović, who has just joined Red
Star Belgrade from Rad Belgrade, is a central midfielder who can do it all – he’s equally
comfortable with both feet, physically impressive, and has great technical ability. Last season
he made almost 40 passes per 90 at 84%, 2.75 dribbles per 90 at 47% success, and three
interceptions and 6.2 recoveries per 90. He has a good ability to ride physical challenges,
often coming away with the ball due to his good close control. Petrović liked to drop
back to receive the ball from Rad’s back line, his role being more of a playmaker in
Rad’s double pivot alongside a more robust ball-winner. But he’s not a quarter-back
type of player, and should be considered as a dynamic force, pushing up and even getting
into the box. At previous club Rad, these opportunities were limited, but it’s clear
that Petrović benefits from greater attacking freedom. Petrović is not dissimilar to Uroš Račić,
the Valencia midfielder – a good passing range, although his longer passes can drift
a bit long, capable of driving his team forwards, and always looking for the ball. For a young
player, he seems to want responsibility, although there are one or two question marks from Serbian
observers about his temperament, and he would benefit from working under a strong coach
and alongside teammates who can elevate his level. He would best suit a team who play with three
in central midfield, where he could occupy the left hand side and push up aggressively
towards the ten slot, dictate the play, and make late runs into the box. He can also play
in a midfield two, but would need a really strong defensively minded presence. His passing
range means he could play well for a direct side, but he has the technical ability to
thrive in a quick passing, possessional system too – add to this his ability to read the
opposition and make interceptions, and he’d fit most defensive systems well. Idea types of team: Napoli, Manchester United While Partizan’s Strahinja Pavlović and
Red Star’s Srđan Babić are both left-footed centre-backs attracting a lot of attention,
there are question marks over both: both are physically dominant and decent to good passers,
but Pavlović can be reckless and positionally undisciplined, while Babić can be sluggish
and slow, and may not have the mentality to step up a level. But Strahinja Bošnjak, despite playing in
a very poor Voždovac team, does catch the eye. His numbers do not look good, but it’s
clear that much of this is down to how direct Voždovac are – they played more long passes
per 90 than any other Super Liga side – and because he was sometimes played as a left-back.
Nonetheless, there’s potentially a seriously good player there, with a lovely range of
long, well-weighted passes and good, low, vertical distribution through the lines as
well. Bošnjak’s issue, and the reason that Partizan
loaned him to Teleoptik and Zemun before releasing him, is that for a centre-back, he is physically
unimpressive. While he’s listed at 6ft, that looks generous, and he can be pushed
around, especially in the. However, his passing ability and potential, as well as his positional
awareness, more than make up for this for us – it was very apparent when he was a
youth at Partizan and his lack of progress is more down to misuse than any inherent lack
of talent. Tactically, he could be used as the left-sided
centre back in a back three, where his passing and ball-carrying can be used and his physical
weakness is mitigated by playing alongside two, stronger players. However, our suggestion
would be that Bošnjak be redeployed as a defensive midfielder. His movement, positioning,
and passing ability would suit this position, while exposing his defensive flaws less. He
would suit the sort of team who plays with a deeper playmaker as part of a midfield three
protected by a couple of shuttling midfield colleagues Idea types of team: Inter Milan, Hoffenheim Šehović is another player predominantly
used in a youth team, although he played 698 minutes last season for the first team with
5.4 progressive passes, 7.4 interceptions adjusted for opposition possession, 8.5 defensive
duels with a 64% success rate, and 2.19 dribbles with a 65% success rate, all per 90. Physically
very strong despite his age, with good balance and stamina, he has the makings of an excellent
modern full-back or wing-back. Despite his strong defensive numbers, he can
be a little rash and push on too quickly to shut the opposition down, but his one on one
defending is solid and helped by his athleticism. His main attacking quality is probably his
off the ball movement and runs. He uses his pace to make well timed runs in behind, and
overall, he is a fullback that likes to roam high on the pitch, inviting long diagonal
passes, and reacting quickly. His delivery is not great from deeper positions, but he
is really good in the final third and pulls the ball back well. Šehović appears to be an intelligent player
who knows his role well and has the physical attributes to dominate a flank both defensively
and offensively. He needs to develop some tactical maturity, and he’s certainly a
player who would benefit from playing in a system that suits his abilities. We think
he could be an excellent left wing back playing ahead of a back three. He would suit a direct,
counter-attacking side, probably with a midfielder who can hold position and clear the way for
his over-lapping runs. Ideal teams: Eintracht Frankfurt, Schalke
04 Only 16 – he will turn 17 in September – Stevanović
is currently the brightest talent from Partizan’s highly respected academy. He’s appeared
as a substitute in their last two Europa League qualifying games, despite his age. Playing
as a left winger, or an attacking midfielder, he’s a brilliant dribbler, technical superb,
and get go past people with a burst of pace and excellent footwork. He’s right footed,
so he tends to cut inside to look for shooting opportunities, but he can also deliver a good
early cross or get to the goal-line and pull back shorter crosses. He likes to start very
wide, hugging the touch-line, and so he’d need to work with a full back who either pushed
inside to cover and bulk out the midfield, or a more disciplined, defensively-minded
full back who provides solidity. Stevanović made his first team debut in December
of last year and while he isn’t ready to take a first team starting place yet, expect
to see him increasing present as a substitute. This suits him currently, as he can inject
pace and creativity without flagging or being physically overwhelmed by older, stronger
players, but it cannot be too long before he’s ready to be a starter in Serbia. Versatile,
he could also play as a central attacking midfielder who would drift left, swapping
with a more narrow, inverted left attacker – his passing from central areas can be
impressive, and he can shoot well. Importantly, he also looks like a player with a strong
mentality, willing to try things and take players on without his head dropping when
it doesn’t come off. He would suit the sort of team that Guardiola
likes to coach, with dynamic wide players who start very wide then push infield or towards
the goal-line for pulled back, short passes. Unusually, we feel that if Stevanović gets
proper minutes this season for Partizan, he could be ready to jump to a major club quickly
– he has the potential to be a really good player for a top European side. Ideal teams: Manchester City, Bayern Munich

100 Replies to “Tifo Scouting: Serbian Super Liga”

  1. To any Srpski brothers out there: I'm in Belgrade for the Veciti – how easy is it to get a ticket and where can you buy them? Hvala

  2. haha You don't know anything about any of these players, you've never seen any of them play, you're just reading off stats!

    3.1 passes per 90 blah blah blah… What a load of nonsense

  3. Thanks for covering my club Partizan, we have produced so many good young talents, but when they go abroad they dont play enough unfortunately

  4. Being Serbian, i signed most of these players in my Fiorentina save and finished 3rd in my 1st season :))) not very useful vid for me lol

  5. Thank you Tifo im from serbia and i was suprised that you did this also you are one of the best scouting chanels

  6. 9:10 it is more likely for stefanovic to gio to leicter as they adopt a similar system and will have a higher chance of actually playing

  7. I could certainly see something like this happening with the Greek Superleague too. There is some great young players in there from both Greece and of other nationalities

  8. Great to see videos on comparably smaller leagues!
    With many young talents from Serbia and other countries heading over into the European top leagues, I'm sure that we will see some of the presented players in the Bundesliga, Premier League etc. very soon, too!

  9. Jupiler pro league has really interesting belgian talent and talent from other countries ready for a middling team in a top 5 league

  10. Could you try do one on the Polish ekatraklasa? In the past few years its created plenty of young talents and they all go to the Serie A.

  11. Hey, could you try the northern Irish premiership or the Irish premiership both leagues do provide talent to the premier League.

  12. Do Croatian HNL next, only Dinamo has at least 5 young that could become world class, Dani Olmo is the biggest talent there was in Dinamo since Modrić

  13. Bosnjak could suit Inter but I reckon he would be a fantastic fit for SPAL based on the description of him in this video.

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