Genoa – The pressing has never scared him. Because with his class Goran Pandev has always known how to come up with brilliant shots. Now, however, Goghi has to deal with a different forcing. The one carried out by Criscito and his companions to convince him not to stop. And to continue playing for a year with Genoa, after the farewell to his North Macedonia dragged to the historic participation in the European Championship.
At home, Pandev’s romantic final act against Holland has been renamed “The last dance”, in Michael Jordan style. But at Genoa, starting with Ballardini, it is hoped that Goran still wants to dance in rossoblù, despite the 38 years to be completed on 27 July. “If he stops, I’ll report him. Indeed I beat him – the coach joked several times – for me he must continue. But the choice is yours ». And also Captain Criscito made his appeal: «Great legend Goran. I hope to share the locker room and the pitch with you again », he dedicates it on Instagram. With the intervention of Perin: “I miss you my old folks.”
And Pandev, what does he say? “I thank Mimmo, he’s like a brother, how many battles together … I don’t know what I’ll do, my contract is expiring, and I’m waiting for a call from Genoa. No, I’m joking, I spoke with Genoa and I thank the president, the fans, my teammates, Ballardini who have always been close to me. Now it’s me who I have to make my choice but first I want to dedicate myself to my family and rest ». Genoa awaits him with open arms, ready with the renewal. There is still a great desire for Goran, perhaps with the idea of adding other quality men to the squad, such as the former Perotti or the Cagliari Pereiro. But there is also the desire to respect the times and choices of a player who has given so much in six years, despite his identity card.
Goran wanted to retire as early as 2020, but the pandemic postponed the European Championship and so he continued to fulfill the dream of playing him with Macedonia. Then he had decided to quit this summer, after yet another salvation as a protagonist with Genoa and the European Championship. But the affection received in the rossoblù world and his own performance still at excellent levels they have led him to take some more time to reflect. The possibility that it continues is there. «I don’t know if I will stop playing in Serie A too – he said in recent days – but after the European Championship it is the right time to say goodbye to the national team. Playing on two fronts, with Macedonia and in Italy, would be too big a burden ».
Dispose of the strong emotions of the last few weeks, culminating in standing ovation from the Cruijff Arena, Pandev will look inside and choose. If he continues, he will do so for his passion for football, for the affection he has for Genoa and if he is convinced that he can still play at Pandev. Certainly, it will not be the economic aspect to guide it. In his career he has already earned a lot, his engagement at Genoa is “normal” (500,000 a year) and finding a new understanding, as always, would not be a problem. On the other hand, one with his palmares, if he wanted to, could have ended his career in exotic leagues, with pharaonic salaries, and instead he preferred to stay in Italy, his second home, and in Genoa, where he said he wanted to stay with wife and children.
And a weight in the choice of Goran may have theimmense affection of the rossoblù locker room in his regards. Beyond Criscito, in fact, many of his teammates and former rossoblù have paid homage to him. From Cassata (“Simply unique”) to Strootman, from Melegoni (“Legend”) to Lerager (“Fantastic person, fantastic player). «My friend, you have excited the whole world – Biraschi wrote to him – you have been thrilling us for years with the magic you do with that ball. You just have to be proud of how high you have brought your country and the children you have made you dream. For my part, I only hope to be able to enjoy you as long as possible ».
In the meantime, as mentioned, Genoa moves on the market. After Buksa, Sabelli and Frabotta (imminent closure) we look to the advanced department where we are looking for quality men, beyond Pandev. Perotti is a temptation: Diego wants to return but first he will have to clear up with Fenerbahce. Again with the Turks, Genoa negotiates the ransom of Zajc. Besiktas offers Ljajic. And the latest idea is Gaston Pereiro, 26, an Uruguayan attacking midfielder from Cagliari. Penalized by injuries, Covid (positive in November and again in April), the former PSV is a player of undoubted talent: the Sardinians think of Sturaro and Genoa asked for information on Pereiro. For the door, in a future key, we like the Romanian 2003, Mitrovic.
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