It was reported in January that Chelsea FC had signed Croatian youngster Mario Pasalic from Hajduk Split but it appears that the two clubs had simply agreed to a fee for a deal that will take place in the summer transfer window. The deal is reported to be for a fee of £1.6million after which Pasalic’s future will be decided. Pasalic has had a fine season in the Croatian top-flight and Chelsea technical director Michael Emenalo was on hand to see the midfielder score the winning goal against RNK Split. After the match, Emenalo spoke about Mario Pasalic and hinted that his future would not include a loan back to Hajduk Split.
Michael Emenalo on Mario Pasalic’s future:
“Mario has grown at Hajduk. In the summer he has to go to a club where he will continue to evolve in order to one day play at Stamford Bridge.”
What this suggests is that Pasalic will join the legion of Chelsea players on loan all over England and Europe. The question now will be whether he can receive a work permit to be loaned in England or if he will join a club with less strict work permit guidelines. The usual destination for players like that would be Vitesse Arnhem so that is always a possibility.
Pasalic is a central attacking midfielder who some pundits have already dubbed the new Luka Modric. This is high praise for the youngster being compared to the little Real Madrid and Croatia playmaker but Pasalic also adds a physical presence at 6’1″ that Modric does not. He has a goal scoring touch as evidenced by his six goals in just 13 appearances in what is his first season in the Hajduk senior squad. Pasalic made his debut in April 2013 and also led the Hajduk U-19 squad to a championship in 2012.
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