Manchester United defensive midfielder Nemanja Matic has vowed to never speak to the Serbian media ever again, after denouncing claims made in the press about a feud between him and former Chelsea teammate Branislav Ivanovic.
Matic had been reported in his home country as being the "ringleader" of a certain section of players in the Serbia national side who have been jeering defender Ivanovic.
Ivanovic, who played alongside Matic at Chelsea and won the Premier League title in with him under Jose Mourinho in 2015, was relieved of the Serbia armband by manager Mladen Krstajic last week and replaced by Aleksandar Kolarov, without explanation.
Reports from Serbia have since claimed that a shaken Ivanovic is now being ridiculed by members of the squad and that Matic is the leader.
The United midfielder - who has been named vice-captain - took to Instagram on Monday (in a post which has since been removed), vowing to never give interviews to Serbian reporters again, also posting a screenshot of a story with the headline: “Nemanja Matić is the ringleader. Bane (Branislav Ivanović) is completely shaken. Players are making fun of the former Serbia captain.”
#Serbia vice captain and @ManUtd star Nemanja Matic has decided NEVER to speak with Serbian media again after daily outlet Kurir claimed he was the one leading a group of players making fun of #Chelsea legend Branislav Ivanovic for being stripped of his captaincy. pic.twitter.com/7Do7fBfz3p— Miloš Marković (@MilosMarkovic) March 26, 2018
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"Because of these lies I have decided to never give statements to the Serbian media," was the player's simple reply.
Serbia, meanwhile, lost a friendly to Morocco 2-1 on Friday and will play Nigeria in another on Tuesday night.