The Croatian league might not be the greatest in the world but their conveyor belt continues to provide some great players, one such player who seems to have a great future is 19-year-old Alen Halilovic. The youngster made big news when he transferred to Barcelona from Dinamo Zagreb in 2014. He is the youngest player to represent the club at the age of 16-years way back in 2012 and although he hasn’t set the world on fire, he has a lot of time on his hands to become the best in the world.
We look at what the player is all about, he is being called as the next Luka Modric but is he really that good?
The world at his feet and the talent to go with it as well
He isn’t just the youngest player to have made his debut for Dinamo Zagreb, he was even the youngest goal scorer in the Croatian league when he scored his first goal against Slaven Belupo, and he was still 16-years-old at that stage.
His performances for Zagreb caught the eye of many big clubs and he eventually was snapped up by Barcelona. He didn’t play much for the main team but did make his debut for the main squad in January 2015, he has now been sent on loan to Sporting Gijon to continue his development.
He has already made 10 appearances for Gijon this season and scored twice for them, taking his overall appearances for the senior sides to over 100 games, another great feat for someone who is just 19 at the moment.
Style of play
Halilovic is known for his attacking ability, he loves to play behind the main striker, almost as a second striker or a false nine. His versatility in attack permits him to play on either side of the wing and he is equally effective in these positions.
His is known for his dribbling ability and loves to make a few runs into the box or have a pop at goal. He does have a great shot in him as well and can start plays and link up with the other attackers while continuing his run and breaking into the opposition box. He loves to put in a key pass or two in as well and can split defences with his passing ability. He can cut in as well, thus making him a great option to play on the wings, as said earlier.
There still are a few areas of play where he needs to work hard. Halilovic isn’t known for having a great defensive ability, but we doubt that he would need to do a lot of defensive duties when playing high up the field. He also doesn’t have the greatest accuracy with his passes and often loses possession with a slack pass here and there.
He still has a lot of time on his hands and his experience with Gijon this season should suit him well. Halilovic is one of the brightest talents anywhere in the world and all clubs will be keeping an eye on his progress at Barcelona, we all know what happened with Cesc Fabregas as well. There are rumours going on that the young Croatian might leave Barcelona at the end of this season and EPL teams are on their toes to sign im.