1. FC Köln: ex-talent asks for contract termination

Sava Cestic. (Photo: Bucco)

Sava Cestic has terminated his contract with HNK Rijeka after only five months. The former 1. FC Köln talent had hoped for more from his commitment. Now the search for the central defender continues.

At the end of November 2020, Sava Cestic made his Bundesliga debut, surprising many. In the first win of the season at Dortmund’s Signal-Iduna-Park, the central defender delivered a strong performance and was rewarded with ten starts in the further course of the season.

However, Cestic was no longer able to match the good performance from the BVB game. The defender was injured early in the summer preparations under Steffen Baumgart. Cestic lost his place in the squad and was advised that he might change with a loan to the second division. But the player wanted to assert himself at FC in the Bundesliga, but this was followed by only 16 appearances in the Regionalliga West before the winter break.

I expected more.

Sava Cestic

Accordingly, the parties decided at the beginning of the year to prematurely terminate the contract of the 21-year-old. As a result, Cestic signed with HNK Rijeka until 2024. But after just five months, the central defender had his contract there canceled at his own request.

After three starts over 90 minutes at the beginning, Cestic was only used sporadically in the course of the second half of the season and in some cases was not substituted on at all. Instead of trying again in the fourth place in the table of the 1st HNL, Cestic is now looking for a new challenge.

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“The time in Croatia was very instructive and an important experience for me,” Cestic told “I found very good conditions at Rijeka, but overall I expected more. I am happy and grateful that the club has complied with my wish to terminate my contract.”