Miralem Pjanic has reacted to reports that claimed he smoked hookah ahead of his participation in Bosnia's FIFA World Cup Qualifier clash with Finland on Saturday.
A photo in which the midfielder was seen smoking hookah has been doing the rounds on social media over the last couple of days. It was alleged that the picture was taken the night before the Finland match, which Bosnia lost 3-1.
The situation resulted in controversy, and Miralem Pjanic was booed by supporters when he was taken off in the second half of the game. The midfielder missed Bosnia's next game against Ukraine, with multiple sources claiming he was sent home from international duty due to unprofessional behavior.
However, the 31-year-old has taken to social media to deny the reports. According to him, the photo in circulation is an old image, and his non-participation in the Ukraine game was a decision from the coach.
He wrote on his Instagram page:
"I officially deny the news. Not playing was a decision shared by the coach. BTW this is an old photo."
Although Miralem Pjanic missed the World Cup Qualifiers clash with Ukraine, his presence wouldn't have changed anything. Before the match, Bosnia had already failed to qualify for the tournament, having won just one of their previous four qualifier games.
What does the future hold for Miralem Pjanic?
Miralem Pjanic's career has taken some steps backward since he left Juventus in the summer of 2020. The midfielder parted ways with the Bianconeri to join Barcelona but ended up enduring a difficult spell with the Catalan giants.
The Bosnian barely got a chance at Camp Nou, with former manager Ronald Koeman zoning him out of his plans. He made just 13 starts in Barcelona colors last season before deciding to leave and join Besiktas on loan this summer.
Pjanic has had a decent start to life at the Turkish club, bagging four assists in eight games across all competitions this season. It is unclear as to whether an impressive spell with Besiktas will convince newly appointed Barcelona manager Xavi to give him a chance next season.
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As it stands, there are uncertainties surrounding Pjanic's future. His chances of establishing himself at Camp Nou are very slim, considering the presence of multiple young and talented midfielders at the club right now.