It speaks volumes about both how tough Birmingham City found the 2021/22 Championship campaign and how impressive Wolves loanee Matija Sarkic was for the club that he was named the Blues’ Player of the Season despite injury keeping him out since January.
The 24-year-old goalkeeper kept a fantastic 10 clean sheets in 23 league games for Birmingham and it is no surprise that last month reports indicated the Midlands club were keen to re-sign him – either on loan or permanently.
It seems that’s something that Sarkic would be interested as well as he told BirminghamLive earlier this week that he’d be keen to return to St Andrew’s.
He said: “Of course, I feel like I have unfinished business here, obviously.
“But I am still waiting to see what Wolves say and to see what the situation is here at Blues. I think we all know it’s a bit unknown at the moment. I hope everything goes positively over the summer and then who knows?
“Game time is a big factor. I think as a goalkeeper you want to be playing, especially at my age now, I want to show what I can do, really push on and achieve the things I want to achieve, play international football, play in the Premier League – that’s what I want to do.”
Sarkic has returned to training with his parent club after recovering from the surgery on his shoulder following the dislocation he suffered in January and, as per the Express&Star, travelled with the first-team squad for the 2-2 draw against Chelsea on Saturday – though he was not named in the matchday squad.
With John Ruddy’s contract up at the end of the season, it seems the 24-year-old could be an option to serve as Jose Sa’s backup next season.
That could prove an obstacle to a fresh deal for the Blues but there are some at Molineux that would rather see the shot-stopper loaned out to get more experienced.
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Wolves goalkeeping coach Tony Roberts is among those and told BirminghamLive: “I wouldn’t want him sitting here being number three or number two, he’s a good enough goalkeeper to go and play in the Championship.
“He’s a full international. For his progression, he needs to play and get tested every week.”
It seems a return to St Andrew’s is possible but it could just be a case of Birmingham having to be patient.