Sevilla cool talk of January sales
Sevilla president Jose Maria Del Nido has said the arrival of new midfielder Miroslav Stevanovic does not mean players will definitely leave Sevilla this January, while claiming he had already turned down a €16 million bid for Alvaro Negredo and hinting a bigger offer could make him change his mind.
Bosnia and Herzegovina midfielder Stevanovic was presented to the local media on Thursday morning, after completing his move from Serbian club Vojvodina for a reported €1.2 million and signing a four-and-half-year deal with the Andalucians.
"I am very happy that Sevilla have chosen me," Stevanovic said. "This is a giant step forward in my career. I will do everything possible to play the best role I can at this club."
The new arrival would appear to fit with speculation that reported Tottenham Hotspur target Negredo - or another saleable asset such as Jose Reyes, Ivan Rakitic or Gary Medel - could be sold this month to help pay the club’s growing debts. Del Nido said only a massive offer would tempt him to sell any first choice player.
"Sevilla have no obligation to sell any player," Del Nido said. "We decided to sign (Stevanovic) now so as not to lose out on him. We will not sell Negredo unless we receive a huge offer, nor Negredo, Rakitic, Medel or Reyes.
"I can say we have offers for seven players and all have been turned down. For Negredo we rejected an offer of €16 million. Only if an offer 'out of the market' comes in will anyone be sold."
Stevanovic, 22, who scored four goals in 25 games for Vojvodina so far this season, said he could play anywhere in attacking midfield.
"It depends on the circumstances," he said. "I have played more games on the right wing, but I have also played on the left wing and through the centre. For me the most important thing is to play, I do not mind where, it is all the same."
The presence at the Estadio Sanchez Pizjuan of his international teammate Emir Spahic and Croatian midfielder Rakitic had helped him decide to accept Sevilla’s approach, Stevanovic said.
"Spahic is the captain of my national team and my friend," he said. "He and Rakitic have influenced my decision to come to Sevilla."
With Sevilla currently sitting 14th in the Primera Division table, with just one from their last nine league games, there has been speculation that coach Michel's days at the club are numbered.
Del Nido said Saturday's home game against Osasuna was not make or break for the boss, but said results must improve.
"I have been around the football world for 27 years and I have not known any coach whose future did not depend on results," Del Nido said.
"The coach’s future will not be decided on Saturday as we can see his capacity, strength and knowledge to get the team out of the situation in which it finds itself. The idea of losing has not entered our minds.
"It is like a pyramid and I am the most responsible. We must look for solutions and put in place measures to get out of this situation."