Messi joins City on a free... although it's Croatian Messi and Birmingham City

Messi joins City on a free... although it's Croatian Messi and Birmingham City

With the success of the Croatian national team and their players at the centre of El Clasico rivals for years with Luka Modric at Real Madrid and Ivan Rakitic at Barcelona until recently, it's not surprising that the country's talents are getting special attention.

No player got more of it than the now 24-year-old Alen Halilovic as the attacking midfielder was touted as the Croatian Messi before Barcelona snagged him all the way back in 2014 when he was an 18-year-old.

Barca paid €2,200,000 million to Dinamo Zagreb for the boy back then and the fans always had one eye on him even when he was playing for Barca B. As in the end, he only played 28 minutes for the proper Blaugrana.

Halilovic is still young at 24 but his CV already looks like spilt cabbage as Birmingham is the 10th team he'll represent and four of those moves were loans. HSV picked him up when Barca decided to sell him, still including a buy-back clause insinuating that they haven't lost all hope on him, just most of it. But the Croatian playmaker made only seven appearances for HSV before he joined Milan following loans to Las Palmas.

The young nomadic player played only 60 minutes for Rossoneri, moving to loans to Standard Liege and Heerenveen in Belgium and Holland respectfully, before terminating his contract with the Italians mutually at the start of October.

He was without a club until now when a deal was arranged with Birmingham City. Only until June of 2021.

"Honoured and extremely happy to be here! Looking forward to getting started! Keep Right On!" wrote Halilovic on his social media.

The Croatian played 10 games for his national team, most at a really young age, and it's highly suspect that a move to the Championship will take him into the Euros squad.


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  • 1
    Alex309 24.11.2020. 12:51:14
    haha...good one with the title

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