Javi Gracia could not have dreamt of a better start to the league campaign this year for Watford. The Hornets have won each of their first four league games, also beating Tottenham Hotspur on the way. They have now turned into an exciting prospect for youngsters in Europe and this would have helped them in their quest to land Serbian starlet Filip Stuparevic. A target for Juventus and Valencia as well, the 18-year old is expected to sign a contract with the English club, with a work-permit also agreed.
Who Is Stuperavic?
Born and brought up in Belgrade, Yugoslavia, the 18-year old graduated from the academy at Voždovac. He made his senior debut in 2016 as a 15-year old and is considered as one of the brightest prospects in the country. He made nine appearances in his first season with the senior side and has only shown progress since. He was afforded 18 league outings last season in the Superliga and was also capped for the Serbian U21 side.
This season, he has started as a first choice, scoring twice and picking up an assist in six league outings, but is expected to join the Premier League side in January.
An outright goal scorer, with decent pace to burn, Stuperavic has great close control and even better vision. He is an excellent finisher, who can score all types of goals and at just 18, has shown great maturity in his game. He may not be a great dribbler, but is strong in hold up play and can create problems for the finest of defence lines in his country.
He is yet to make a name for himself in Europe but has the potential to be a superstar in the future and could be a decent acquisition for the Hornets.
Chances With Watford
At just 18, Stuperavic is yet to play outside his home country and the Premier League might be too huge a step for him. But Gracia, the current manager at Watford, may add him to his senior side, giving him a chance to train with the high-on-confidence group of players and keep the door slightly ajar to the chances of him making an appearance further down the line this season.
Joining a club like Watford at such an early age will give the Serbian a lot of confidence. And as shown by the acquisitions of Pontus Dahlberg, Ben Wilmot and Domingos Quina, Watford are planning for the future and Stuperavic could play a huge part in these plans.
He may not be a first-team option yet but can easily cement a place in the squad before the end of the current season. He is expected to cost around £2m and he could turn out to be a real bargain in just months to come.
Stats Courtesy: Wikipedia