Exclusive: Serb scout blames agents for Markovic Liverpool flop; Pantic struggle
It has been a torrid few years for Liverpool winger Lazar Markovic.
The Serbian has not made a single appearance for his employers since Brendan Rodgers was in charge. That was in 2015.
There have since been loan spells at Fenerbahce, Sporting Lisbon, Hull City and Anderlecht. And a permanent switch was planned in the summer to end his Merseyside nightmare.
Markovic was supposed to sign with Anderlecht until the deal fell through at the last minute, with wages reportedly scuppering the deal.
According to Serbian football scout Goran Milosavljevic, the 24-year-old must blame his agent, not only for the failed move in the summer, but for the last three years of his career.
Markovic was a 21-year-old bright talent at Benfica when Liverpool signed him in 2014. And Milosavljevic believes his agent was greedy by organising a premature exit from Portugal.
He told TribalFootball.com: "It was agent's fault. Lazar Markovic played well for Benfica in a few games and then Liverpool came. If he stayed at Benfica for one year or two years, he was born in 1994 and sometimes the agent just looks for money and he doesn't think about slow progression and going step by step.
"He played for Anderlecht for the past six months and I know there was interest from a German club. I don't know where he is now. I watched him here in Belgrade train individually recently. Once again, his agent made a mistake."
Milosavljevic, who scouted players for Arsenal for over 15 years, has identified Chelsea's Danilo Pantic as another misguided Serbian talent.
The 22-year-old signed with Chelsea back in 2015 after breaking onto the scene with Partizan Belgrade. However, he now joins a raft of youngsters signed with the west London club that has yet to make a single first-team appearance.
Pantic endured unsuccessful loan spells in the Netherlands with Vitesse Arnhem and Excelsior before returning to Partizan on a loan deal in 2017, which was then extended this season.
And Milosavljevic thinks it will take a few years before the midfielder is ready to play for Chelsea.
"This is another example of a player going to England too early," said Milosavljevic.
"He went to Vitesse and he didn't play. Now he plays not bad but he needs to play well in the Europa League with Partizan. It will take him two or three years to reach the Premier League."