Milos Kerkez does everything to get into the team (Photo: Getty Images)

 

MILOS KERKEZ

Age: 17 years old
Nationality: Hungarian, Serbian
Position: left-back defender
Foot: left
No. of National League II (NB II) matches: 16

– Did you really not know about AC Milan is interested in you?
– Everything happened so quickly – told to Nemzeti Sport 17-year-old Milos Kerkez, born in Vojvodina, who has recently signed by Italian AC Milan from Győr. – I only want to play football, to train and to improve. My father and my manager, Dániel Kaposi work behind the scenes to get me to the best place possible.

– More clubs were also interested in you from countries, including like Belgium. Was it clear for you that you'd choose Milan?
– After our first phone conversation with Paolo Maldini and sports director Frederic Massara, I knew that I want to go to Milan. From the moment on, it's wasn't a question anymore which club's footballer I want to be.

– Didn't your jaw drop when a private jet was sent for you in Hungary?
– As far as I know, it only happened because there was little time until the end of the transfer deadline. But it shows how much they really wanted me. They left no stone unturned to make me Milan's footballer. It all happened really fast, so I barely had time to understand what was going on around me. Of course, it was a great experience that a private jet was sent for me.

– You got into the club by Paolo Maldini's suggestion. How was the meeting with the legend of Milan?
– He was kind and informal. It was a great experience meeting someone like him. As a kid, I used to watch video footages on his game, and based on my first experiences, I can say that he still has the same good vibes he had on the football field. We've talked a lot and gave me lots of good advice. We're talking about the best left-back defender in the world, and since I play in the same post, I should listen to every word he says.

– Are you not afraid that it's a tough row to hoe?
– I knew it wasn't going to be easy to get into the senior team, but I will have to make this big step one day anyway. I think it's the only way to improve and move forward. I'm aware of my abilities and I'm doing everything I can to make my senior team debut as soon as possible.

He traveled to Italy with the private jet sent for him from Milan

– Do you see a realistic chance of that?
– Honestly, not yet, because physically I can't compete with the players in the senior team right now. But if I start training with them, I'm sure I'll improve by leaps and bounds, and solve the tasks that are waiting for me. There's no pressure on me, no one expects me to level up right away. I've heard that in the long run I'm seen as a replacement for Theo Hernández, but I'm just as inspired by that, too. I know the club has plans for me; I'm here for a reason.

– Is it true that you started your career as a midfielder?
– Yes. At first, I was a bit angry that I was taken to the back of the field as a defender because I loved playing in midfield. When I was promoted to the senior team in Győr, Gábor Boér, our head coach at the time, tried me as a left-back, and I played well. I was told I had everything for this post, and I fell in love with it. I realized that the left-back defender was the best post for me. As a child, I lived for scoring goals, but now I'm focusing on defense.

– As a child, did you play football day and night on the street?
– I played football with my siblings all day long in the backyard. We couldn't be forced inside for dinner either.

– At the training facility at Milan, you can train under different circumstances. How can we image the base; is it equipped with space technology?
– The infrastructure is excellent. The fields are incredibly good, the environment is clean, the restaurant is also very good. Everyone at the club is helpful, welcomed me kindly, so I have no reason to complain.

– Have you already met with Zlatan Ibrahimović?
– Not yet, but I cannot wait to do so.

– Why do you think you caught Paolo Maldini 's attention?
– He's seen a lot of videos of me, and my mentality got him. When I'm on the field, I do everything for the win, just like Paolo Maldini did.

(Translated by Vanda Orosz)