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Twelve youngsters turn professional

It's been a big, big day for twelve of our Academy lads as they signed professional contracts for the first time. They have been presented in Rajko Mitić Stadium's Media Centre on Monday.
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Nine players born in 2001 and another three who were born in 2002 realized their dreams by becoming professional footballers.
The following youngsters were given professional deals: Edin Ajdinović, Luka Velikić, Marko Dedijer, Njegoš Kupusović, David Milisavljević, Mirko Milikić, Nikola Savić, Nenad Adžibaba, Borisav Burmaz (all born in 2001), as well as Miloš Pantović, Edvin Eleven and Aleksa Matić (born in 2002).
 
Academy Head Coach Nikola Jelić was the first to congratulate the boys.
“This is a big occasion for the players and their parents, but also for all the coaches who work every day to aid develepoment of these youngsters – not just as players, but also as people. These boys worked hard and pushed themselves to prove that they deserve to be a part of the club. These contracts are not the final goal, but an incentive for everyone to keep working hard and progress in the game. I wish you all  fine health and good luck in your quest to reach Crvena zvezda’s first team.”
 
Crvena zvezda U-19 Head Coach Bratislav Živković congratulated the players and underlined the importance of youth development at our club.
“This is a proud day for everyone who worked with you in the past years. The club is striving to improve the Academy and ensure the best possible conditions for your progress. You’re on the right path, but you must keep going forward. This is only the beginning. You’ve got the talent and a team of people who will strive to help you become the best players that you can.”
 
Nikola Puača, who managed these boys last season with the Cadettes will be Bratislav Živković’s Assistant in the coming season. He also addressed the new professionals.
“Congratulations to everyone. I expect you to continue to work and show the same attitude as last season. There will be chances for you to shine in the future. You need to be prepared to take them as they come.”
 
Former Crvena zvezda defender Slavoljub Đorđević will be the Cadettes’ Head Coach next term. Of all the coaches at the club, he may know these players the best.
“You’ve made an important step in your career and you deserve congratulations for that. Your duties will be much more serious from now on, as well as your coaches’. The more you progress and learn, the more prepared you need to be. It’s necessary in professional sport, especially at a club as big as this. There are more kids that we’ve been watching and I have no doubt we’ll see more boys born in 2002 sign professional deals next year. It’s brilliant to see the club investing in youth. It’s how winners are made. I’d like to say a big thank you to Academy Director Dragan Mladenović and Academy Head Coach Nikola Jelić for believing in Zvezda’s kids. I’m confident that this approach will benefit the club in the long run.”

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