Sam Allardyce has been linked with a move that could bring Inter Milan midfielder Zdravko Kuzmanovic to Upton Park.
With uncertainty around the future of Alou Diarra and Gary O’Neill, Allardyce is looking to strengthen in midfield. With that in mind, the successful procurement of Kuzmanovic would be a crucial one if he can lure the Swiss born, Serbian international to London.
Kuzmanovic was born in Switzerland to Bosnian Serbian parents. He spent his youth career initially at Durrenast before moving to Young Boys in Bern, aged 14 in 2001. Two years later he joined FC Basel where he progressed to the senior side.
His first season as a professional was a good one, the 6ft 1in player was awarded The Swiss Golden Player of the Year award for 2006. With a maintenance of his high level of performances carrying through to the next season, his hard work was rewarded when he was pursued by two Italian clubs – Palermo and Fiorentina. It was Fiorentina though who secured his signature.
The Serbian international became a regular first team player at the Stadio Artemio Franchi and made over 70 Serie A appearances and was also a pivotal figure in Fiorentina’s European forays. He also contributed 3 goals during his spell at the club.
On Summer transfer deadline day in 2009, Kuzmanoivc signed a four-year contract with German side VfB Stuttgart. His move to the southern German side came at a £7million cost. In his first season at the club he wasn’t long in establishing himself as a first team regular. He would go on to spend three and a half seasons at the Bundesliga club.
When talks over a new contract collapsed in December 2012, Kuzmanovic’s future clearly lay elsewhere. A month later he made a return to Serie A, this time with Internazionale for an undisclosed fee. He has made thirteen appearances for the Milan club.
When Andrea Stramaccioni was sacked as Inter manager in May in didn’t come as a huge surprise as the club only managed a ninth place finish. In his place has come Walter Mazzarri and it appears that he doesn’t have a place for Kuzmanovic as he looks to rebuild the Inter side ahead of the new season.
If Allardyce does succeed in securing the Serbian international to West Ham, it could well prove to be a considerable success. He is a talented play-maker who is renowned for his dexterous approach to the game as well as his vision and ability from set-piece situations.