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Hertha must accept my demands, insists Pantelic

SoccerNews in Bundesliga 29 Oct 2008

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Serbia striker Marko Pantelic has criticised Bundesliga club Hertha Berlin for stalling on his contract negotiations after his recent bust-up with their Swiss coach Lucien Favre.

Hot-shot Pantelic was dropped for a Bundesliga game a fortnight ago after missing a training session without permission and says his deteriorating relationship with Favre is affecting the contract negotiations.

“I am sick to the back teeth of this hide-and-seek game which goes on behind my back,” the 30-year-old told German tabloid Bild.

Pantelic claims he has had no communication with Hertha’s bosses and wants to know where he stands with his contract set to expire next summer.

“If they don’t want me, one of the club’s bosses should come to me and say: your rate is too high for Hertha, I could accept that.”

Since joining Hertha in 2005, Pantelic has scored 40 goals in 96 league games, but admits he has a problem with Swiss coach Favre and has only scored two goals so far this season.

“I have the feeling that from our first day working together, I was not the coach’s favourite player,” said Pantelic. “Nevertheless, I held my tongue and have scored 13 goals in the league last season.”

And Pantelic, who has scored three goals for Serbia in 20 games, insists Hertha must meet the demands he has stipulated in his new contract.

“Now Hertha must understand that they can’t determine the price of my contract any longer. They must accept what I want,” he said.

Although Berlin captain Arne Friedrich is set to be offered a new contract with an annual salary of four million euros (five million US dollars), Pantelic says it is not enough for him.

“It is quite normal that a top forward gets a better contract than a defender,” he said.

But with his current contract set to expire in June 2009, Pantelic says he will not leave when the transfer window opens again in January. “I will not leave this winter,” he insisted.

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