Joker Mihajlovic taunts Scotland over missing goal machine Fletcher

By John Greechan

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Cheeky Serbia coach Sinisa Mihajlovic on Friday night teased Scotland over the exile of 12million striker Steven Fletcher — identifying the missing goal machine as the country's best player.

And he said the absence of both Steven and stricken Manchester United star Darren Fletcher made this the ‘perfect’ time to face Craig Levein’s men.

Both the Serbian captain, Chelsea star Branislav Ivanovic, and Manchester City defender Aleksandar Kolarov straight-batted questions about Sunderland forward Fletcher, who made himself unavailable for selection last February and has been frozen out since.

Joker: Sinisa Mihajlovic said Scotland are missing both Fletchers

Joker: Sinisa Mihajlovic said Scotland are missing both Fletchers

When Mihajlovic was asked to name Scotland’s most dangerous player just a few moments later, though, the former Inter Milan star deadpanned: ‘Fletcher.’

Quizzed about how the absence of both Fletchers, with the Manchester United skipper still recovering from illness, would affect the game between the sides on Saturday, he added: ‘For us, it is perfect without them.

‘We have studied the Scottish team for days, weeks and months. We know all of their players very well; their tactics and their formation.

Goal machine: Steven Fletcher is in exile

Goal machine: Steven Fletcher is in exile

‘But maybe they will surprise us tomorrow, just as we are preparing to surprise them.

‘We know from which part of the team the dangers will come, which players are most dangerous.

‘But we’ve seen some weaknesses — and we will try to exploit them.’

Ivanovic said: ‘I think it’s good for us that he (Steven Fletcher) doesn’t play. But he hasn’t played for the national team for a long time.

Glad: Aleksandar Kolarov (left) and Branislav Ivanovic are pleased not to face Fletcher

Glad: Aleksandar Kolarov (left) and Branislav Ivanovic are pleased not to face Fletcher

‘For us, we need to concentrate on the guys who are going to play.  Maybe it is good that he’s out — but we’re here concentrating on our team.’

Kolarov added: ‘It’s better for us if some of your best players don’t play in the team.

‘But your team is quite good without Steven Fletcher. Still, for us it is good that he doesn’t play.’

 

 

The comments below have been moderated in advance.

The bottom line is if Scotland do not progress in the group, Levein will be haunted by the Fletcher omission. No side can afford to leave out it's best players. Least of all a country which does not enjoy the riches of 20+ years ago! It's a big gamble.

Click to rate     Rating   13

I struggle to recall one of the serbian players, that's how well known they are.

Click to rate     Rating   20

BILLY THE FISH.........................Brains of a fish, that's clear..........but do you have a slimy scaly tail as well??.

Click to rate     Rating   10

I support whoever plays Scotland, so Come on Serbia! I predict Serbia to win 3-0

Click to rate     Rating   15

He is not teasing,Steven Fletcher is the best attacking player Scotland have,simple as that and forgetting about the politics of it all,it is a crying shame that he is not playing for his country.

Click to rate     Rating   26

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