Those black feelings, that talent: Josip Ilicic proved that human and divine are not mutually exclusive

The loves happier are those who finish. They take cover from the wear of timeavoid having to dip the past into resentment, allow you to remember what you really were. A rule that was raised to the system on Thursday evening, when Josip Ilicic and the people of the Goddess they looked each other in the eye to say goodbye. A little more than five minutes to close in boxes five full years, made of touches of velvet and surprising victories. But also of fearsof falls, of black feelings like tar. All lived without ever losing that empathy mutual, that taking care of each other that was the lowest common denominator of the time spent together. A story too important to close with a banal happy ending. Everything revolves around that tense. No longer indicative of the present but the present past. From today Josip Ilicic has been many things for‘Atalanta. And all together.

A temporal step that raises the talent of the Slovenian towards legend. At least a Bergamo. Because that fine-legged playmaker like spaghetti isn’t just the man he personally contributed to write history of the Nerazzurri club. Josip has managed to do much more. He transformed hers personal affair in a each other collective. A footballer who proved that human And divine they are not mutually exclusive, but they can coexist within one same entity. Ilicic is the more imperfect of the gods of modern football, an oxymoron in a shirt and shorts. One capable of whirling his talent into a game and then putting it on hibernating, to alternate blinding plays and ectoplasmic performances. His whole existence seems aimed at where to confirm the verse of Caesar Pavese: “It is a risky game to take part in life”.

It is a lesson that he learns the moment it comes to light. When she opens her eyes father already there is no more. He was killed by a Serbian neighbor who didn’t particularly appreciate hers Croatian origins. Things that happen in that generator of loneliness that was there Balkan war. A cruel incipit that directs a life, that transforms the heart into that “forgotten” instrument described by Eugene Montale. Whoever comes into contact with him tells of the duality of his soul. In the locker room they call him “grandmother”, For his ability to always complain about someone ailment. But when it melts it becomes nicesometimes irresistible. Walter Sabatinione who said he saw heaven and found it incredibly similar to a supermarket, follows him on the recommendation of the son of Delio Rossi, Dario. The first impression is complex. “In a state of grace he was a phenomenon – he said a while ago to the Journal – but it was a little shady, it seemed was never happy. She showed a certain indolence, she struggled to socialize because of her shyness “. It is a condition that will accompany him throughout his life.

TO Palermo the exhibition of his talent is celebrated to the whole world. He scores, sends his opponents into the goal, disappears. Believe his talent it means betting even knowing you can be betrayed at any moment. TO Florence it is much worse. “The insults he took on the way from the sports center to the pitch were incredible,” he said Daniele Pradé – He went into depression and after four months he already wanted to leave ”. Instead he stays in Viola for 4 years. Her farewell in 2017 has the bitter taste of mutual liberation. “In Florence they gave me up for finished”, he will say some time later. Atalanta is the place of rebirth. He and the team join hands and run towards results unexpected. Europa League first. But above all the Champions. On February 19, 2020 his talent finds the sublimation. The Goddess plays at Mestalla di Valencia. Josip scores the first goal. And then he scores again. It’s still. It’s still. Atalanta wins 3-4 and flies to quarter finals.

It is at that moment that Ilicic begins to suffer from dizziness. Bergamo is the most scourged city since Coronavirus. The images are heartbreaking. Army wagons they take away men and women who have turned into corpses. Josip looks and finds no explanation. He watches and begins to hear a sense of oppression which leads him to overshadow everything. Football is no longer a priority, at least for the moment. Back in Slovenia to find himself again, to have a place to call again homewhile no one around him can understand the depth of his unease, while the newspapers spread rumors and rumors. When he feels ready he goes back. It’s been months. But only on the calendar. Because on the pitch it’s still the same story. Josip lights up again. Josip shines again. Until reaching a new peak: the goal scored ad Anfield against the Liverpool, in the Champions League. “The worst, once experienced, is reduced over time to a giggle of amazement,” he writes Aldo Busi in his Seminar on Youth. For Ilicic It is not so.

In December he resumes dancing with his family ghosts. Everything is so heavy again. “Our head is a jungle,” she comments kindly Gasperini. And she is right. Josip no longer plays. From January until May 20, when his coach does not throw him in against Empoli. These are the last ten minutes of the last day of the championship. It is a gesture more symbolic what a practical, a way to hug still after a long time. On the market gong comes the ending that no one dreamed of but that everyone had guessed. Ilicic rescinds his contract. He will go to play who knows where, looking for the adrenaline and the hit again. “Thank you for the affection you always show me. Together we made history and history it will never be forgotten. You will always be in my heart ”, he writes to the fans. And they wrote to him the other night. Colored paint on a white cloth. Up to form the sentence: “For those touches so magical that made us shiver. Thanks Ilicic ”. There is nothing more to say. There are not more tears to be paid. Ilicic leaves the Gewiss Stadium towards his destiny, a character in search of another author, of a club that gives him the last fragments of gratitude. “God alone has the privilege of abandoning us. The others leave us ”, writes Cioran. And last night Josip Ilicic took away the satisfaction of deny it.

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