From the first moment he graced the football stage, Ivan Perisic was recognised as an incredible talent.
His home club Hajduk Split would have appreciated the opportunity to keep hold of the Croatian jewel for longer than they eventually did, but much to ignorance of some Hajduk Split fans – who had been angry at then the 17-year-old boy who they felt abandoned the club – young Perisic was forced to move out as his entire family moved to France for personal reasons which had plenty to do with his father’s failed business endeavours.
Socheaux B side was not exactly the break Ivan Perisic was holding out for as he left the comfort of his home knowing that the likes of Anderlecht, PSV, Ajax and Hertha Berlin among others all kept close tabs on him.
Swiftly discarded by the French outfit, Perisic found the unlikely refuge at Belgian Roeselare, where he not only secured a place in the first team, but went on to made a huge impact which made him a hot commodity in Belgian football.
Club Brugge managed to beat Anderlecht to his signature allowing the young Croatian to flourish and gain attention from the scouts of Borussia Dortmund, who came knocking and offering Perisic his long overdue chance to shine.
Reshaping the Troubled Youngster
Jurgen Klopp did not rush into getting the Croatian talent to Dortmund.
Current Liverpool boss has built his world-class reputation as a tactician and educator – not exclusively in football terms – as he enjoys helping his young players reach stardom through tenacious work on and off the football pitch.
Klopp thought he hit it with Ivan Perisic as he recognised the evident talent and quality, but their union turned out to be rather premature as Croatian winger ended up disrespecting his coach on a particular occasion, signing his death wish in the process, sort of speak.
“It feels like the coach has something against me”, Perisic said after starting only eight Bundesliga games in Dortmund’s double-winning campaign back in 2011-12 season.
“Nobody wins a place in the starting line-up by talking”, nonchalant Jurgen Klopp responded, sending the boy packing to Wolfsburg shortly afterwards.
What Ivan Perisic did to himself almost cost him the big break he is enjoying at the moment, but every move he made during his career – even those inadvertent ones – seem to have happened for a good reason.
Perisic’s time at Dortmund cut a figure of a hugely inconsistent player, who would consciously avoid helping out in defence, putting himself in front of the team and doing all he could to undermine his talent.
Dortmund departure was, in that regard, blessing in disguise.
Path to Prominence
People from the Balkans and Croats in particular are well acquainted with the qualities of one Ivica Olic.
The 1860 Munich forward made a big name for himself playing in various clubs in Germany and Ivan Perisic can consider himself fortunate to have had Olic as teammates, friend and tutor at Wolfsburg.
Playing alongside Olic helped Perisic reshape his view on what football was all about, take a different approach and come of age. Mature and dedicated, Perisic became a huge counter-attack threat who likes to do layoffs and finish attacks on his own with thunderbolt strikes out of a full run. He is no longer getting away from defensive duties and will be of great assistance in midfield when he is not breaking down the flanks with his fast pace.
Perisic’s changed attitude helped him become one of Inter Milan’s best players and force his way into the squad even when odds were stacked against him at times. Ten Serie A goals in 27 appearances together with 5 assists this season make him an overall threat and major influence for the Nerazzurri.
With Perisic onboard, Inter Milan have great chances of making good value of 21/10 price slapped on their back for the forthcoming eye-catching fixture against Napoli on Sunday.
Inter would like to keep an influential player as Perisic, but the Financial Fair Play dictates different scenarios as Perisic faces prospect of getting sacrificed at a high price that could go up to €55 million from want-to-become Premier League champions.
Ivan Perisic will not find it strange to be forced out and victimised as he already has that notch on his belt because, for all he knows, it may open another big change in his fervently passionate career.
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