Stevan Jovetic is in Milan today for a medical exam with Italian side Internazionale after they agreed terms with Manchester City for the sale of the striker, according to the Daily Mail.
Manchester City will be loaning Jovetic to Internazionale for a 2.1M pound fee, but there is a compulsory 10.25M purchase clause, as well as 2M in add-ons.
Jovetic has been plagued with minor injuries since his arrival in England in the summer of 2013, as well as being in a side full of talented forwards, where first-team chances were limited.
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Pellegrini’s tactical preference to play one striker also contributed for a scarceness of opportunities for Jovetic. Sergio Aguero was often the first choice for that role – a decision that proved successful for Manchester City – but team cohesion seemed to be lacking in some matches during 2014/15, a cause for concern in a side that wants to challenge for European and English titles.
Since arriving in Manchester two summers ago, Jovetic has only made eleven first team appearances in the Premier League for the Citizens. He has also made nineteen substitute appearances, however someone who was first choice striker in Florence before leaving for England would be unhappy with that.
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Manager Manuel Pellegrini cannot be fully to blame, though. During Jovetic’s tenure at Manchester City there have always been at least four forwards at the club – all of whom were receiving first team football prior to their arrivals.
Alvaro Negredo, who was purchased around the same time as Jovetic, was a star striker in Seville before transferring to Manchester City. Edin Dzeko had toppled Bayern Munich and won a league title with VFL Wolfsburg before he moved to Manchester.
Sergio Aguero has been world class all along, and Pellegrini evidently preferred Aguero’s playing style over his other options, causing an imbalance of talent up top.
Even though Stevan Jovetic may have been a top talent in the Serie A prior to his arrival in England, his playing style may not be suited to the Premier League. Jovetic was playing in the Serie A during a time where the league was going through a poor patch – no Italian team had made it deep in the UCL before Juventus’ loss against Barcelona in June since Internazionale – the club buying Jovetic – since 2010.
The period after Inter’s treble win in 2010 began the reign of dominance in Italy for Juventus. The standard of play, especially among the lesser teams in the Serie A, was not what it had been when teams like A.C. Milan and Roma were going deep in the Champions League and causing serious problems for other top European Clubs.
In 2014-15, only two Italian teams were even in the group stages of the UCL, and AS Roma stood no chance against Manchester City and Bayern Munich. What I’m trying to get at is that while Jovetic was playing up top for Fiorentina, there may have only been two or three teams with defenders who were capable enough to stop someone with his skill set.
Stevan Jovetic is a player whose playing style fits Serie A. The pace of the game is slower in Italy. Another difference is that defenders are not as physical on forwards as they are in England.
Jovetic is a forward that likes to pass – in the season before he joined Manchester City, he created fifty-five chances for Viola in thirty-one games, as well as scoring thirteen goals. Jovetic had quite a fitting strike partner for him in Italy, Colombian speed demon Juan Cuadrado.
Cuadrado’s pace allowed him to draw defenders to himself, which let Jovetic shoot from distance – something he is very good at. Forwards who are distance shooters don’t seem to do as well in England, especially ones who lack the speed to get away from defenders consistently. Jovetic seems much better suited for Serie A, and more than ever right now.
Internazionale have added new defensive solidity, as well as making Xherdan Shaqiri’s move from Bayern Munich permanent. Shaqiri will compliment Jovetic’s play very well – he is capable of playing on either wing as well as through the middle, he is very quick, and he is capable of finishing provided some good service.
Jovetic’s key passing ability is up there with the top class forwards in Europe – while in Italy he averaged nearly 2 key passes per game. He will be providing the service to Shaq, as well as Argentinian Mauro Icardi, who plays on the shoulder of the center backs, looking to get in behind the back line and finish chances.
These two players, combined with a midfield that now includes destroyer Geoffrey Kondogbia, might make Inter title challengers in two to three years, along with maybe one more addition on the wing.
My big question is: can Jovetic stay injury-free? IF Stevan Jovetic shakes his injury woes and has the fitness to stay in top shape for lengthy periods in the first team, he seems to be a great fit for this rebuilding Inter side and a great purchase for the Nerrazzuri.
Jovetic said recently that he was in good shape physically, but it remains to be seen if that will translate into him returning to his form of 2012/13. If it does, however, 14M Pounds – eight million less than what City bought him for – looks like a coup for the Milanese side.