Big things were expected for Alen Halilovic when he joined Barcelona in 2014 but just five years he looks certain to join his fifth club in a short career after a bad spell at AC Milan.
There have been many players who the expectation of greatness has been thrust upon long before they have earnt the right to be thought that way.
Of course there are many reasons why a player doesn’t like up to their potential and potential is a dangerous thing, as Irish comedian Dylan Moran explains it, “You should stay away from your potential. I mean, that is something you should leave absolutely alone! You’ll mess it up! It’s potential, leave it! And anyway, it’s like your bank balance, you know – you always have much less than you think.”
For every Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo there’s a Freddy Adu or Ravel Morrison who never make of their careers what we’re all expecting.
Even the biggest and best clubs in the world sometimes sign players based on what they could be and not what they are. Barcelona did that in 2014 when signing Alen Halilovic but things have never worked out for him.
He’s since been at Sporting Gijon on loan, then a permanent move to Hamburg, another loan to Las Palmas and finally another permanent move to AC Milan.
His time at San Siro hasn’t gone well though and he’s played any Serie A games. According to Sky Italia, via Football Italia, he is now in advanced talks with Besiktas over a move to Turkey.
There’s not much evidence of Halilovic playing for Milan. Image: PA Images
Halilovic joined from Hamburg in the summer for nothing and signed a deal until 2021 but has played only three times, with all of them coming in the Europa League.
In December managed Gennaro Gattuso decided to play defender Davide Calabria in midfield ahead of the former Dinamo Zagreb youngster, not exactly a good sign.
At just 22 there’s still plenty of chance for Halilovic to make a great career for himself but so far he’s yet to live up to the potential.
Maybe he’ll be able to unlock it at Besiktas.