Adem Ljajić

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Adem Ljajić
CSKA-Roma (1).jpg
Ljajić with Roma in 2014
Personal information
Full name Adem Ljajić
Date of birth (1991-09-29) 29 September 1991 (age 25)
Place of birth Novi Pazar, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.81 m (5 ft 11 12 in)
Playing position Forward
Club information
Current team
Torino
Number 10
Youth career
FK Jošanica
2005–2008 Partizan
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2008–2010 Partizan 38 (9)
2010–2013 Fiorentina 78 (15)
2013–2016 Roma 61 (14)
2015–2016 Internazionale (loan) 25 (3)
2016– Torino 33 (10)
National team
2007–2008 Serbia U17 9 (1)
2008–2010 Serbia U19 13 (6)
2008–2010 Serbia U21 11 (1)
2010– Serbia 20 (3)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 21 May 2017.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 25 May 2016

Adem Ljajić (Serbian Cyrillic: Адем Љајић, Serbian pronunciation: [ǎːdɛm ʎǎːjitɕ]; born 29 September 1991) is a Serbian professional footballer who plays as a forward for Italian club Torino and the Serbia national team.

Ljajić began his career with FK Jošanica, and later Partizan, with whom he made his debut in the Serbian SuperLiga and UEFA Champions League. In January 2010, he was set to join England's Manchester United,[1] but the club withdrew its option to sign him in December 2009.[2] Instead, he joined Fiorentina for a reported fee of around €8 million in January 2010.[3] In August 2013, after three years in Florence, Ljajić joined Roma for a fee of €11 million, signing a four-year contract.[4] In July 2016, he was sold to Torino.

Club career[edit]

Partizan[edit]

Born in Novi Pazar, in the Serbian region of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Ljajić joined Partizan at age 14 in 2005, signing from Serbian lower tier club FK Jošanica.[5] Ljajić was the first player to wear the number 22 for Partizan after Saša Ilić transferred out to Galatasaray in 2005.[6] He made an appearance for Partizan in the first leg of the second qualifying round of the 2008–09 UEFA Champions League on 29 July 2008, entering the match as a second-half substitute.[7] He made a second substitute appearance in the second leg and another substitute appearance in the second leg of the third qualifying round. He scored his first competitive goal for Partizan on 23 November 2008 in a league match against OFK Beograd.

In October 2008, Manchester United had given Ljajić a trial, although no information was given about the length of the trial initially.[8] On 2 January 2009, Manchester United announced the signings of both Ljajić and his Partizan teammate, Zoran Tošić. Tošić would join the club immediately, while Ljajić would remain at Partizan for the remainder of 2009, joining United in January 2010.[9]

Despite being unable to officially join the club until January 2010, Ljajić made regular trips to Manchester throughout 2009 to train with the United first team, and so that the club's coaches could monitor his progress.[10] However, United decided not to take up their option to sign Ljajić due to issues surrounding the club's application for a work permit.[11][12] Following the collapse of the transfer, Partizan manager Goran Stevanović claimed that the situation had put Ljajić into "psychological shock", but that the player was "handling the situation well".[13] Partizan Director of Football Ivan Tomić stated, "I think that they will regret this decision in future."[13]

Fiorentina[edit]

Ljajić playing for Fiorentina

On 13 January 2010, Italian club Fiorentina announced the signing of Ljajić. After passing a medical, Ljajić signed a five-year contract,[14] with Partizan receiving a reported fee of €8 million for the player.[3] Ljajić made his debut in Fiorentina's 2–2 draw away to Cagliari on 31 January 2010, coming on as an 82nd-minute substitute for Manuel Pasqual.[15] However, his first half-season at the club under head coach Cesare Prandelli was spent settling into the new surroundings.

The arrival of Ljajić's compatriot Siniša Mihajlović as head coach saw increased first-team opportunities for Ljajić. He scored his first Viola goal from the penalty spot against Lazio on 18 September 2010, which Fiorentina lost 1–2.

On 2 May 2012, Ljajić was substituted in a match against Novara. His reaction to this substitution was to sarcastically applaud the manager Delio Rossi, who grabbed and attempted to punch Ljajić. Fiorentina announced after the match that Rossi had been dismissed as manager, and they would take proportionate measures against Ljajić. Ljajić's teammate Valon Behrami, who was on the bench at the time of the incident, said no one, including him, had heard Ljajić insult Rossi, which disproved the manager's claims that Ljajić insulted his family. Behrami added Rossi should be ashamed for his actions, as well as lying to the media.[16][17]

Ljajić scored a brace as La Viola beat Internazionale 4–1 on 17 February 2013.[18]

Roma[edit]

Ljajić signed with Roma on 28 August 2013 for a fee of €11 million, potentially rising to €15 million depending on the club's success, with Ljajić signing a four-year contract.[4] He chose the number 8 jersey, left vacant by Érik Lamela, which he also used with the Serbia national team. On 1 September 2013, Ljajić made his Roma debut against Hellas Verona, replacing Alessandro Florenzi; Ljajić scored the final goal in 3–0 win. In his first season in Rome, he scored 6 goals in 32 appearances.

On 30 August 2014, Ljajić made his 2014–15 season debut against Fiorentina, a 2–0 win for the Giallorossi. On 24 September, he scored his first goal of the season against Parma, a 2–1 Roma victory. On 6 December, he scored his first brace for Roma, which allowed Roma to come back and draw the home match against Sassuolo, which finished 2–2. On 26 February 2015, he scored his first goal in the UEFA Europa League for the club, the opener in a 2–1 win away to Feyenoord. He concluded the season with 41 appearances and 9 goals, making him the club's second-highest goalscorer of the season, after Francesco Totti.

Loan to Internazionale[edit]

On 31 August 2015, Ljajić signed for Internazionale on a season-long loan, for €1.75 million, with an option to make the transfer permanent at the end of the season for €11 million.[19][20] On 1 December 2015, he scored his first goal for Inter in a 2–1 away loss to Napoli.[21]

Torino[edit]

After Inter did not exercise their buy option, Ljajić was sold to Torino on 18 July 2016 for €8.5 million, plus €500,000 in potential bonuses.[22]

International career[edit]

Ljajić represented the Serbia under-17 and under-19 teams. On 7 September 2008, he made his international debut for the under-21 squad in a European Championship qualification match against Hungary. On 26 October 2010, it was announced by Serbia coach Vladimir Petrović that Ljajić would receive his first senior call-up against Bulgaria in a friendly match on 17 November 2010.

Ljajić was removed from his country's squad by coach Siniša Mihajlović after refusing to sing the national anthem in a 2–0 friendly loss against Spain on 28 May 2012 due to personal reasons.[23] Ljajić previously signed a code of conduct established by Mihajlović that includes, among other things, to sing the Serbian national anthem, "Bože pravde" ("God of Justice").[24] Mihajlović said:

"It was said that the players who agrees with the text of the agreement shall sign it, but those who do not agree can go home. Ljajić has failed to comply with the agreement was signed and this is why he had to leave the team. My decision should serve as a clear example at the first step to any kind of indiscipline and disrespect. I am sad about Ljajić, he is a player on whom I counted. We talked, but he did not want to explain to me why he did not sing the national anthem, but said that he could not for religious reasons. Therefore, he is removed from the team. It is not directed personally against him, had any of the players who would do the same, I would acted identically. There are some things over which I can not move, and one of them was the not singing of the national anthem."[24]

Ljajić confirmed Mihajlović's statement, also claiming that he loves Serbia and that he has a will to play for its national team, but added that he must respect himself, inferring that he was not going to play under Mihajlović any longer.[25]

On 17 February 2014, the new head coach of Serbian national team, Ljubinko Drulović, made a statement and said that he would not be require players to sing the national anthem but to give their all for their country on the field.[26] He scored his first goal for the senior side on 7 June 2015 in a 4–1 friendly win against Azerbaijan.

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of 21 May 2017[27]
Club Season League Cup Continental Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Partizan 2008–09 24 5 5 1 4 0 33 6
2009–10 14 4 2 0 8 2 24 6
Total 38 9 7 1 12 2 57 12
Fiorentina 2009–10 9 0 1 0 0 0 10 0
2010–11 26 3 2 0 0 0 28 3
2011–12 15 1 3 0 0 0 18 1
2012–13 28 11 3 1 0 0 31 12
2013–14 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0
Total 78 15 9 1 1 0 88 16
Roma 2013–14 28 6 4 0 1 0 33 6
2014–15 32 8 2 0 7 1 41 9
2015–16 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Total 61 14 6 0 8 1 75 15
Internazionale (loan) 2015–16 26 3 3 1 0 0 29 4
Torino 2016–17 33 10 3 2 0 0 36 12
Career total 235 50 28 5 21 3 284 57

International[edit]

Serbia senior team
Year Apps Goals
2010 1 0
2011 5 0
2012 1 0
2013 0 0
2014 2 0
2015 8 3
2016 3 0
Total 20 3

International goals[edit]

"Score" and "Result" columns list Serbia's goals first.
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1 7 June 2015 NV Arena, Sankt Pölten, Austria  Azerbaijan 2–1 4–1 Friendly
2 4 September 2015 Karađorđe Stadium, Novi Sad, Serbia  Armenia 2–0 2–0 UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying
3 8 October 2015 Elbasan Arena, Elbasan, Albania  Albania 2–0 2–0 UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Partizan[28]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Exclusive: Adem Ljajic Q&A". ManUtd.com. Manchester United. 4 March 2009. Retrieved 17 March 2011. 
  2. ^ "Manchester United end interest in Serbian Adem Ljajic". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 2 December 2009. Archived from the original on 5 December 2009. Retrieved 2 December 2009. 
  3. ^ a b "Partizan prodigy Ljajić joins Viola". uefa.com. Union of European Football Associations. 13 January 2010. Archived from the original on 16 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  4. ^ a b "Adem Ljajić" (PDF) (Press release) (in Italian). Associazione Sportiva Roma. 28 August 2013. Retrieved 28 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Od prodaje Ljajića, Jošanica dobila 31.945 eura" [From the sale of Ljajić, Jošanica got 31,945 euros]. Sandzak Live (in Serbian). SandžakLive.rs. 24 June 2010. Retrieved 27 June 2010. 
  6. ^ "Trojica prekobrojnih, Ljajiću 22!" (in Serbian). B92. 27 July 2008. Retrieved 22 December 2011. 
  7. ^ UEFA Champions League – Fixtures & Results
  8. ^ Papers: Reds eye 'Little Kaka'?
  9. ^ "Serbians to join United". ManUtd.com. Manchester United. 2 January 2009. Retrieved 17 March 2011. 
  10. ^ Ljajić, Adem (4 March 2009). "Exclusive: Adem Ljajic interview" (Interview). Interview with Thompson, Gemma. Retrieved 17 March 2011. 
  11. ^ Hibbs, Ben (3 December 2009). "Reds won't pursue Ljajic". ManUtd.com. Manchester United. Retrieved 17 March 2011. 
  12. ^ Nichols, Matt (4 December 2009). "Ljajic decision explained". ManUtd.com. Manchester United. Retrieved 17 March 2011. 
  13. ^ a b Taylor, Daniel; Wilson, Jonathan (4 December 2009). "Manchester United accused of causing 'psychological shock' to Adem Ljajic". guardian.co.uk. Guardian News and Media. Archived from the original on 7 December 2009. Retrieved 6 December 2009. 
  14. ^ "Definito l'accordo per Ljajic". ViolaChannel (in Italian). ACF Fiorentina. 13 January 2010. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  15. ^ "Serie A / Cagliari – Fiorentina". ViolaChannel. ACF Fiorentina. 31 January 2010. Retrieved 31 January 2010. 
  16. ^ Behrami: Rosi je slagao šta mu je Ljajić rekao (eng. Rossi lied what Ljajic had said to him
  17. ^ Fiorentina coach Dellio Rossi attacks Adem Ljajic then gets sacked
  18. ^ "Fiorentina 4–1 Internazionale". ESPNFC. 17 February 2013. 
  19. ^ OPERAZIONI DI MERCATO 31 August 2015 A.S. Roma
  20. ^ "Adem Ljajic joins Inter". inter.it. FC Internazionale Milano. 31 August 2015. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 
  21. ^ "Napoli 2-1 Inter Milan". BBC Sport. Retrieved 2015-12-02. 
  22. ^ http://www.asroma.com/en/news/2016/7/adem-ljajic-joins-torino-on-permanent-deal
  23. ^ "Sportsday – Monday 28 May as it happened". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 28 May 2012. Retrieved 28 May 2012. 
  24. ^ a b "Mihajlović: Ljajić je znao pravila (Mihajlović: Ljajić knew the rules)". The Večernje novosti. Retrieved 26 January 2013. 
  25. ^ "Ljajić: Volim Srbiju, poštujem sebe" [Ljajić:I love Serbia, I respect myself] (in Serbian). The B92. Retrieved 26 January 2013. 
  26. ^ "DRULOVIĆ: Ja ću pevati himnu, igrači ne moraju!" [Drulović:I will sing the anthem, the players don't have to] (in Serbian). Telegraf. Retrieved 24 February 2014. 
  27. ^ "Serbia - A. Ljajić - Profile with news, career statistics and history". Soccerway. Retrieved 22 March 2015. 
  28. ^ "22 Adem Ljajic". inter.it. FC Internazionale Milano. Retrieved 2 September 2015. 

External links[edit]