STAGS SIGN OLI SARKIC ON LOAN FROM BLACKPOOL
Stags land Blackpool striker
mansfieldtown.net, Monday 1st February 2021, 10.55pm
Mansfield Town is delighted to announce the loan signing of Blackpool forward Oliver Sarkic until the end of the season.
The under-21 Montenegrin international joined the Seasiders on a two-year deal in July, following a successful spell with fellow Sky Bet League One side Burton Albion.
Sarkic began his career within the youth systems of Anderlecht and Benfica, before signing for Leeds United in 2018.
The 23-year-old departed Elland Road for the Pirelli Stadium in 2019, and after a successful season with Burton Albion, signed for Neil Critchley’s Blackpool in the summer.
Sarkic has also made appearances for Montenegro’s under-17, under-19 and under-21 sides.
“We know Ollie from his time at Burton and he’ll provide us with a good option, playing anywhere across the front three,” said Stags’ boss Nigel Clough. “He’s not played too much at Blackpool so he’s raring to go.
“He has quality and pedigree. He’s a skillful player and is different to what we have in those forward three positions, and that was the main reason for bringing him in.”
mansfieldtown.net, Monday 1st February 2021, 11.00pm
“We’ve brought Ollie Sarkic in to replace him and the move [of Nicky Maynard to Newport] could allow a couple of the younger lads, such as Nathan Caine, to be promoted into the first team squad if needed.”
mansfieldtown.net, Tue 2 Feb 2021
Following a transfer deadline day that ran right to the wire for the Stags, boss Nigel Clough gave his thoughts on the January window as a whole, declaring he is ‘very happy’ with his squad.
“It [deadline day] was pretty hectic all the way through.
“We’d been working on a few things anyway for the last week, but it always - inevitably - goes to the last day.
“We’re very happy with the squad that we’ve got. We got Oliver Sarkic in at the last minute - he can play anywhere across the front three.
“He [Sarkic] will offer us that little bit of quality - technically, he’s a very good player. He has versatility and can play anywhere across the front three. With Cooky and Nicky, their position is just central, they couldn't do one of the wide ones. Jordon can go up the middle, Jamie Reid can, Ollie Sarkic can. So we've got 3 options straight away.
Sarkic Loaned To Mansfield
Oli Sarkic has signed on loan for Mansfield Town until the end of the campaign.
The forward, who has featured nine times for the Seasiders this season, links up with his former manager Nigel Clough at Field Mill.
The Club would like to wish Oli the best of luck with the move.
Oliver Sarkic @sarkic10
Cant wait to get started at @mansfieldtownfc
Sarkic came on as sub at half time in the EFL Trophy game for Burton against us last season.
Only Sweeney from the current Stags side played in that game (though some others were on the bench).
MUCH EARLIER STORIES:
How Brewers' Oliver Sarkic is endearing himself to fans, team-mates and bosses
Grimsby-born, Belgium-raised Montenegran who is really settling in to life at Burton Albion
By Colston Crawford, 9 OCT 2019
It is not just goals in each of his last two matches that have started to convince Burton Albion supporters that Oliver Sarkic might be the latest gem unearthed by Brewers boss Nigel Clough.
Sarkic is endearing himself to team-mates, the management and fans by his selfless approach, hard work and technical ability. The goals are the obvious factor.
It was only when watching the footage of Sarkic’s emphatically-volleyed finish in the Carabao Cup tie against Bournemouth from behind the goal, thanks to the club’s useful net-mounted “goal-cam” that the technique involved could really be appreciated.
The quality of his second goal, against Milton Keynes Dons on Saturday, was more immediately obvious.
Receiving the ball from the latest of Scott Fraser’s astute passes, 20 yards out, Sarkic turned to make a yard of space and picked his spot in the top corner of the net with a shot that left Dons keeper Lee Nicholls diving pointlessly.
“I see Ollie do that every day in training and before every match,” said an admiring Liam Boyce, who scored twice himself in the 3-0 win.
“He has unbelievable technique. In shooting drills in training, he does that every time he gets the ball, so I keep saying, keep shooting, keep shooting, it’s going to go in.
“As soon as he hit it, you knew it was going in, the keeper had no chance. That’s the sort of quality he has, even when he’s crossing, he always puts it in the right position. He’s a quality player.”
Boyce had benefited from Sarkic’s technique earlier in the game, his fellow striker receiving an inch-perfect long pass from Nathan Brodhead on the right and volleying it first time, invitingly across the six-yard box, where Boyce threw himself forward to head the ball in. But when the Dons managed a spell of pressure, Sarkic was also in the thick of the action, competing to snuff out attacks in midfield.
“He’s like a striker, slash winger and he does the defensive work that needs to be done,” noted Boyce, before revealing a little of the man they see in the dressing room.
"Ollie is one of those people who you don’t expect to be funny,” said Boyce. “He’s quiet but then he comes out with one-liners in situations where you might not expect him to speak and everyone bursts out laughing. I don’t think he’s trying to be funny but everyone finds it funny. He’s brilliant about the place.”
Talking about the goal against Milton Keynes, Clough said: “It was right in front of our supporters as well, which was lovely. It was a good team goal as well.
“I think he’s right-footed but you wouldn’t know it, he’s almost two-footed at times and he just came on to his left foot and curled it in. It was a lovely finish and we do want to see him do it more because we do get him, as much as anybody, into some good positions.
“His finish was probably the pick of the goals but he does that in training and we’ve been saying it’s time he did that in games. He’s scored now in his last two matches and we’re very pleased with how he’s starting to feel really at home as part of the team.”
Sarkic has an interesting, probably unique, background. Grimsby-born, he was raised in Belgium, where he attended The British School of Brussels, but he has caps for Montenegro Under-17s, Under-19s and Under-21s. He was with Anderlecht, then Benfica, had trials for Swansea City and joined Leeds United - who sent him on a season-long loan to Spanish Division B side Barakaldo CF.
When Leeds released him in the summer, he had a trial before signing for Burton - and if he carries on at this rate, you would think Montenegro may have another look at him.
BURTON ALBION’S SARKIC OPENS UP ON HIS FRUSTRATING TIME AT LEEDS UNITED
Graham Smeaton, 7 June 2020
In an interview with Belgian French-language source Walfoot, Burton Albion striker Oliver Sarkic opens up on his time in English football and mentions the frustrations of his time at Leeds United.
Sarkic was one of a wave of young players brought over by Leeds United from big clubs on the continent. In his case, he was brought to Elland Road on a free transfer deal from Portuguese giants Benfica.
It didn’t work out for him at Elland Road, despite impressing in Carlos Corberan’s Under-23s. The Montenegran youth international was shipped out to Spain on loan with third-tier side Barakaldo CF for whom he scored once in 12 games.
A return to Leeds at the end of June 2019 saw an almost-immediate move to League One side Burton Albion where the youngster has brewed up a storm for the third-tier side.
Across all competitions, this season, the Grimsby-born youngster, who first made his name at Anderlecht as a youth player, has scored 5 goals and created a tidy 10 assists. These assists include one in each of four EFL Cup games, including against Premier League outfits Leicester City and Bournemouth.
When asked about this explosion in output, Sarkic is quick to praise the chances that he got under Nigel Clough at Burton, calling him “an incredible coach” and one that “put me back in the saddle.” However, he also comments back about how things could have been different.
He says of this explosion of form that: “I would have liked it to take place in Leeds.” On the topic of Leeds, it is easy to sense the frustration that he feels about leaving. He comments that he took part in only training sessions under Marcelo Bielsa but that Bielsa’s methods caught his eye. On this, he adds: “He’s a great coach, I really would have liked to work with him.”
It wasn’t to be. Although he feels as though he took a backward step joining Burton Albion, Oliver Sarkic has had an encouraging season. Now he’s ready to take two steps forward with the Brewers.