Milos Dimitrijevic has insisted he believes Sydney FC will shock the bookmakers and be among the A-League title challengers next season. As the Sky Blues prepare for the new A-League season, they now know they will have services of the Serbian midfielder after Dimitrijevic decided to remain in Australia and reject the offer of a return to Europe. While the financial muscle behind Melbourne City has seen plenty of bet365 fans back the newly-formed franchise to dominate next season, Dimitrijevic has made it clear his decision to remain in Sydney has come down to his belief the club can challenge for the title.
The 30-year old arrived in Sydney at the beginning of the year after spending his career bouncing around European football’s top divisions, establishing himself as a fan favourite despite injuries plaguing the midfielder during his debut season. Head coach Graham Arnold knows the importance of having the likes of experienced players such as Dimitrijevic in this young Sydney squad.
While injuries kept the Serbian sidelined for much of the year, Sydney had been desperate for the former Nantes star to remain at the club next season. Despite a number of offers from European sides and on the back of a turbulent season for Sydney, Dimitrijevic has now set his stall out and handed a huge boost to the Sky Blues as they look to put everything in place for October’s kick-off. After missing out on pre-season last year, the Serb is also looking to make sure he gets himself into the best possible shape before Sydney kick off the new season against hot favourites Melbourne City at the Allianz Arena.
“I am happy here. I think we can win something this season … and I believe in that. I’m here and I want to be part of that. I need to be fit and to play a lot of games to feel good and play good and my performance will be good this season. I must score a couple of goals and assists and I will be happy,” said the midfielder.
While it’s unsurprising Melbourne City will start the season as the firm betting favourites, Sydney FC fans will be a little put out to see their club being written off by many bookies. As well as hanging onto Dimitrijevic, the Sky Blues have bolstered their squad with the exciting signings of Shane Smeltz, Marc Janko, Bernie Ibini and Alex Brosque, and there is little doubt that Sydney will start this season much stronger than how they ended the last campaign.
Coming up against the favourites on the first day of the season will give Arnold and the Sydney fans the chance to see just what they’re up against this season. With City boasting established international stars such as David Villa, Robert Koren and Damien Duff, Sydney will have to be at their best if they are going to get their A-League season off to a winning start and lay down a marker to the rest of the division.