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World Cup 2018: 5 Flops of the group stage

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2.97K   //    29 Jun 2018, 21:43 IST

#2 Sergej Milinković-Savić - Serbia

Milinković-Savić in action against Brazil.

The Serbian national team bowed out in the group stage after finishing third in a group that had Brazil, Switzerland and Costa Rica. While the squad boasted of many great names, making Serbia a contender for a last 16 spot, Sergej Milinkovic-Savic had a fair share of attention on him.

The 23-year-old was supposed to be the man of the moment for Serbia. After an impressive season at Lazio and some extraordinary recent performances, the attacking-midfielder had been attracting interest from some of the world’s biggest teams.

He has been one of the most prolific midfielders in Europe’s main leagues and having helped Lazio in becoming the Serie-A’s highest-scoring team this season, was expected to replicate a similar form for his nation. While no one questioned his ability going forward, it was the defensive aspect of his game that was being scrutinized.

With the likes of Tadic, Mitrovic, Kostic, and Ljajic running ahead of him and Nemanja Matic standing like a boulder in front of the Serbian defense, it was all up to the young man to pull the strings for his team.

However, his lack of composure and the nerves often saw him get caught out of position or ball-watching. With many clubs interested in his signature and many a World Cups yet to come for the young midfielder, not all is lost for him.