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Cinquini exclusive: Why Stam and Mihajlovic genuine Lazio greats

Former Lazio director Oreste Cinquini has lauded Jaap Stam and Sinisa Mihajlovic as two of the club's greatest defenders.

Early and erroneously sold by then Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson to meet some economic needs (after buying Ruud van Nistelrooy and Juan Veron), Dutch defender Stam immediately became a column of Lazio who won a Coppa Italia first and then Milan, demonstrating every game of being a player of a higher category.

He won with both Lazio and Milan and Cinquini, the Italian sports director who worked for Lazio, told Tribalfootball.com exclusively what type of player and man he was.

He said: "Stam is a fantastic person, he was of a crystalline class, he knew how to do everything, set up the game from the back, defend, an exemplary professional. In defense we had Couto, Favalli, Negro, Stam, Mihajlovic, Marchegiani and Peruzzi as goalkeepers."

Cinquini also spoke to us about the Serbian coach, now on the Bologna bench, with whom he was able to work with at Lazio, where Mihajlovic left his mark and heart.

"An extraordinary player, an exemplary professional. Sinisa Mihajlovic is out of every category, because he was the first to arrive and the last to leave, he took care of every detail, he always stayed to train, to kick penalties and free-kicks, he was a leader in the locker room."

Clearly he's always been a coach, even when he was just a player. Lazio fans and football fans in general cannot help but remember the great things he did for that rocky defence, of which Cinquini still retains great memories, not only for the technical qualities, but above all the human ones.

The defence of Lazio has traditionally presented big names, but Sinisa Mihajlovic was undoubtedly one of the greatest and most loved ever, as evidenced by the love of the Lazio fans for the Serbian and the numbers of that extraordinary experience: 193 appearances and 33 goals, not to mention the assists that his magic foot was able to offer to his companions.

Matteo Vitale
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Matteo Vitale

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