Stankovic on brink of history
Serbia's Dejan Stankovic has spoken of his pride at being on the brink of making World Cup history.
By James Dall
Last Updated: 12/06/10 5:55pm
Serbia international Dejan Stankovic has spoken of his pride at being on the brink of making history as the first footballer to play in three World Cups under three different flags.
The Inter Milan midfielder represented Yugoslavia at the 1998 tournament before playing for Serbia and Montenegro in 2006.
Stankovic, 31, is now set to captain the independent Serbia in their debut on the world stage when they tackle Ghana in Group D on Sunday.
"I'm happy to be the first player to play in three World Cups for three different teams, this is a historic day for Serbian football," he said.
"It will give us extra motivation, although we'll definitely be a bit nervous."
Serbia manager Radomir Antic, meanwhile, has warned opponents Ghana that his side's spirit is on the up.
"We're here for the first time at the World Cup as an independent state and this makes us even more motivated and stronger," he said.
"I feel very privileged, I'm a football man and this is a big opportunity to take part in something that we will share with all Serbians, who will get behind the team.
"We're well aware that we have an extra motivation and we don't feel inferior to anyone.
"We enjoy being together and we're growing with each game. I'm not just talking about our progress in the Fifa rankings but we're growing as a family. And it's not just the results which are important but our fans must enjoy the way we play."