Sports as a career is one built on insecurity. One minute you are the toast of the town, the sports Golden Boy, and the next, you are unceremoniously shipped out to make room for the Next Big Thing. Rarely is sentiment afforded and often the best one can hope for - if this is, indeed, a better situation - is to fade away from the greater consciousness as you transition into the next stage of your career.
Lazar Markovic is all too familiar with that narrative as he arrived in Anfield a young, conquering hero full of promise and attacking verve. Now, if tenuous reports stemming from Greek ITKs are to be believed, he is exiting as a reminder of the many promising youngsters who do not quite find the next level.
Lazar’s time in Red has been, in a word, forgettable. He showed some of the speed and verve early in his time under Brendan Rodgers, but ultimately was relegated to the bench and failed to attract much interest in subsequent loans to Benfica, Sporting Lisbon, Hull, and Anderlecht.
The links are, all told, very thin and no reports currently exist from the usual bevy of journalists with close ties to Liverpool Football Club. And as of drafting this piece, no reports exist even among the tabloids, so take this note with a quarry of salt and perhaps maybe a bit more extracted from the Dead Sea for good measure.
If and when Markovic goes, though, there will undoubtedly be those who will have looked at how tantalizing his tools were and wonder what went wrong. At 24 he isn’t exactly old, but he’s no longer a youth either. Here’s hoping that Lazar finds a permanent place and finds the same spark that once saw him as one of the most promising attacking talents in Europe.