Speaking to the Daily Mirror, Southampton’s Dusan Tadic has hailed Serbia midfield teammate Filip Djuricic as a fantastic addition for the club ahead of their ambitious Champions League push.
Djuricic, 23, joined the Saints on a season-long loan from Benfica hours before the transfer deadline, having spent the first half of the campaign at Bundesliga outfit Mainz 05.
Like Tadic, the creative midfielder first made a name for himself in the Eredivisie after joining Heerenveen from hometown club Radnicki Obrenovac in 2010, scoring 26 goals in 111 appearances, before sealing a €6 million move to Benfica in 2013.
Earning his Serbia debut during his time in the Netherlands, the 19-times capped international has since struggled to fulfil the promise he showed with the Dutch side, but Tadic believes his compatriot will demonstrate his class in the Premier League.
“He will help us try and get in the top four,” he said. “You always need good players and competition between players is better. It is good to have more choices.
“He is my good friend and he is a good player. He is a number 10 and he knows how to play football. He has potential and he has quality.”
Tadic also admitted to talking Djuricic into a move to the South Coast, adding: "Yes, yes, we talked to each other.
“He had watched a lot of our games. He knows how we play, he knows the coach. He knows that we are going to play good football and that it would be good for him.”
Southampton manager Ronald Koeman is more than familiar with Djuricic’s talents from his time working in the Eredivisie, and the Dutchman is excited about what his new signing can bring to the side.
“I know the player from Holland,” he told the club’s official YouTube channel. “He played several seasons for Heerenveen and then he moved to Benfica.
“He had some good games, there was a lot of interest in the player when he was at Heerenveen. He moved to Portugal and now it’s a good chance for the player to develop himself.
“It’s a young player, he’s 23 years old, he’s technical, fast and he can play in different positions in the midfield. He can play on the left side and the right side.”
Southampton sit fourth in the Premier League table after 23 games, level on points with fifth-placed Arsenal, following a disappointing 1-0 home defeat to Swansea on the weekend.
A Champions League spot remains the goal, but the likes of Tadic and Djuricic will have to perform to their best over the coming months in order to pip the likes of the Gunners, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur.