February 27, 2020 – In an interview with Gol.hr, Croatia U-21 coach Igor Biscan reveals the likelihood of a new superstar from Argentina joining the young Croatia national team.
It’s no surprise that football coaches in Croatia closely follow the development of young Croatian footballers – and there are plenty of Croats abroad, especially in Germany. Now and then, someone memorable comes into the mix.
“I follow players a lot, wherever anyone pops up. Either I find myself following these platforms, someone notifies me or people come forward. The Federation also collects information well. There are many of us abroad, specifically, in this age group. We have now found a player in Argentina, who we are following,” Biscan said.
“The boy’s name is Bajamic. It’s quite interesting; we’ll keep an eye on him. He plays in a club from the Second Argentine League. He plays as the striker or wing striker. He is very offensive-oriented. We are following him and maybe calling him at one point,” Biscan said, adding:
“There has always been and always will be talent. It’s in our genes. We just need to expand the network to gather information. We have to do everything we can to prevent a talented young man from escaping us.”
The talented young player is Mateo Bajamic, or ‘Bajamich’ in Argentina. He was born on 3 August 1999 in Morrison, a small town between Cordoba and Rosario. He is a member of the Cordoba Institute, a club that has introduced many great footballers. It all began with the famous Mario Kempes and Osvaldo Ardiles, world champions with Argentina in 1978. Of the younger generation, the most famous is Paulo Dybala, currently playing at Juventus.
Bajamic is predicted to have a great career. He is 20 years old and has scored nine goals for his club so far in 22 games. He has scored eight goals in 17 games this season, drawing attention from Argentina’s biggest clubs and many in Europe. He is the hit of the season, and can’t escape the praise of his teammates.
“He really is a great talent. If he goes on like this, I do not doubt that he will be playing for a big European club in two to three years,” predicts his teammate German Estigarribia.
“Everyone is aware of his potential. Even those who have only seen him play once couldn’t help but notice his talent,” writes Argentinian MundoD.
Coach Cesar Zabala also spoke about the attacker of Croatian roots, whose surname is mostly found in the vicinity of Omis, like the Split rising singer Maja Bajamic.
“Those of us who have followed him from a young age know very well what kind of talent he is. He is now perhaps our most important player. He is strongest at the point of a striking attacker. He is a great striker and there is still room for progress. We are working to make him even better,” said Zabala.
Argentine media reported that he is targeted by many European clubs and that he is in the process of obtaining Croatian citizenship. Instituto has reportedly been visited in recent weeks by numerous broadcasters from European clubs, who are in constant search for South American talents.
“Mateo is currently not for sale. He has a contract until the summer of 2022,” the president of the Institute, Roberto Castoldi, firmly asserted, and to the speculation that Bajamic intends to obtain Croatian citizenship, he replied:
“Our idea is to keep all our players with an Argentine passport so that there will be no surprises before the possible sale.”
Argentine media have openly speculated that Instituto will find it challenging to keep Bajamic, and he will likely leave the club in the summer.
Instituto, like most smaller Argentine clubs, has major financial problems, so it is clear that resolute rejection of potential customers is just a tactical move to try to get as much compensation as possible. Bajamic is estimated at €1.8 million on Transfermarkt, and Instituto is reportedly seeking significantly more.
The Argentines are obviously aware that the Croatian Football Federation is following Bajamic closely and that he may soon play for the U-21 Croatia national team. Bajamic has not played in Argentina’s young selection so far. What we do know now is that Mateo is certainly on Biscan’s radar.
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