Vojno Ješić could scarcely have wished for a better start to Serbia's hosting of the UEFA European Under-17 Championship – the opening goal against Denmark.
Though the 1. FC Köln striker's effort was swiftly cancelled out, and the tournament hosts ultimately beaten 3-2, there was plenty of room for positives. Indeed, coach Milovan Djorić may have felt his side suffered under home pressure, but Ješić embraced the added stresses of television coverage and an expectant crowd.
"There were 6,000 people there, the stadium was full and it was on television," he told UEFA.com "But I didn't feel the pressure – for me this was a motivation. It was a very good experience. It feels good to be here. The hospitality has been excellent, the pitch was very good and there were lots of people at the stadium. This is an inspiration.
It is a great pleasure to play for the Serbian national team in a tournament we are hosting."
All is not rosy, though, with Serbia ruing their late defeat ahead of their upcoming fixtures in Indjija against section favourites France, on Friday, and England on Monday. "We are angry because we lost in the last five minutes," Ješić said. "It was a mental problem. But it's the first match.
"We have seen France play and we know the coach will analyse them and tell us what their strengths and weaknesses are. We know Denmark and France will be different – they are two different schools of football, they play different styles. We also know about England – they are the holders. France, then England, will be our last chance."
Though his sights are on those two games for now, Ješić's long-term ambitions extend far further. "It's my ambition to be a great player," he added. "Playing for Barcelona is my dream. Messi is my idol. I also like the style of Franck Ribéry."
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