Fiorentina forward Stevan Jovetic has revealed that he will know the identity of his next club within 10 days. It has been widely expected for some time that Jovetic will be leaving the Serie A side this summer after having been persuaded to remain in Florence for one more season 12 months ago. Arsenal have been strongly linked with the Montenegro international, while Italian champions Juventus are also thought to hold a strong interest.
And, while relaxing in the beach city of Budva in his homeland on Saturday, Jovetic disclosed that he would soon know what his future holds.
“He said ‘In 10 days, I will know which club I will go to,’” a source told IBTimes. “When asked which club he prefers, Arsenal or Juventus, Jovetic replied ‘My devotion belongs to [my first club] Partizan [Belgrade].’”
After Fiorentina missed out on qualification for the Champions League at the hands of Milan on the last day of the season, Jovetic has made it clear that he wants a fresh challenge.
"Last summer president Andrea Della Valle told me to stay one more year and that at the end of the season, which is now, I would be allowed to leave if I wanted to,” Jovetic explained in an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport last month. "I've been at Fiorentina since 2008, it has been five intense seasons. I'm young and ambitious and it is normal to want to test myself somewhere else. I don't see anything wrong with that.”
A potential stumbling block thus far to a deal being completed could well be Fiorentina’s insistence that Jovetic can only leave if a bid of €30 million (£25.7m) is received. That may have been enough to deter Juventus, which last week completed a deal for another forward, Carlos Tevez. Arsenal’s interest may also have cooled as they close in on the signing of Real Madrid striker Gonzalo Higuain. With Madrid set to lose the Argentina international, reports in Spain in recent days have claimed that the Spanish giants’ new manager Carlo Ancelotti is keen to bring Jovetic to the Bernabeu.
The 23-year-old is also thought to be admired by former Madrid boss Jose Mourinho. The new Chelsea manager is on the lookout for a forward this summer and, after missing out on Radamel Falcao, could be making a move for Jovetic.
After joining Fiorentina for €8 million (£6.9m) in 2008, Jovetic suffered a major setback two years later when he missed an entire season following a severe cruciate knee ligament injury. He returned in fine fashion in the 2011-12 season, hitting 14 goals in Serie A. His form tailed off somewhat last campaign, scoring just once in his final eight league appearances. However, few doubt his all-round talent and he will further appeal to prospective suitors for his ability to operate as a main striker, coming in from wide areas or, indeed, playing off of a center forward.
Sports reporter, mainly focusing on my native sport of soccer, but also dabbling in some tennis and Formula One.