Alen Halilovic has had to apologise to Barcelona fans.
It’s easy to see why Alen Halilovic is compared to Luka Modric, for the Croatian youngster not only aspires to play like him but looks like him too.
Halilovic came close to signing for Tottenham, with the Independent reporting the Premier League side were closing on a move in 2013, only for him to later sign with Barcelona instead.
The talented teenager has now hit his first bump in the road as a Barcelona player, after making angry gestures towards the bench after being substituted in a recent game for the B team.
Halilovic has been deployed to Barcelona B this season, who compete in the Spanish second division, and has played 19 games for them so far, scoring three goals.
It was in a recent match with Alcorcon in which the incident happened. Already 1-0 down, Barcelona B saw their goalkeeper sent off in the 27th minute for giving away a penalty, and Halilovic was substituted as the side made tactical adjustments.
Spanish newspaper Sport report that Halilovic was ‘very angry’ with the decision and made various gestures towards the bench, expressing his displeasure to the coaching staff, as can be seen below.
— Cristina Busquets (@crisbusquets) March 21, 2015
It’s too soon to see if Halilovic did himself any long term harm, and he did not feature in the weekend game against Tenerife due to international involvement.
Still only 18, he displayed that while he has a lot of talent, he has maturing to do, which is why it is better he goes through this for the B team rather than under the glare of Barcelona’s first team, for who he has played just 29 minutes in the Copa del Rey earlier this season.
The midfielder said at the time via Twitter, as reported by Sport: “I want to say that I’m sorry for my reaction yesterday… I was angry because we were losing and returning from injury and wanted to play. I am very sorry to have given this image of me.”
Now Barcelona sporting director Pere Gratacòs has confirmed this week to Esport3 that Halilovic has been fined for his actions, with the club keen to show they are instilling the correct values in the youngster.
The teenager has had a lot early in his career, making his Croatia debut at just 16 and linked heavily with the Premier League before being snapped up by Barcelona.
It’s too early to project whether Barcelona was the right path he should have chosen rather than Tottenham, but his progress so far shows that he is not a player Spurs could have expected to go straight into their first team, and they too would be having to work hard at coaxing him into being the top class player he was billed as having the potential to become.