Nurkovic's return to Serbia explained

Premiership

Kaizer Chiefs coach Stuart Baxter has explained why striker Samir Nurkovic has returned to Serbia.

Nurkovic is currently three-and-a-half weeks into his anticipated two-month spell on the sidelines after he was required to undergo surgery in September in order to repair cartilage damage to his right knee.

The Serbian goal-getter had since been stepping up his rehabilitation in South Africa but recently returned to his homeland, with Chiefs coach Baxter confirming that his departure was due to family reasons.

"He has been allowed to go home to be with his seriously ill father," the 68-year-old said following Amakhosi's victory over SuperSport United on Sunday.

"He is getting his rehab there and we are in contact with the doctors. We did the same with Leonardo Castro [who had surgery in his native Colombia] and that went very well.

"So, we are allowing that and I think it’s correct and it’s right to do that. When he gets back he’s going to have to fight for his place."

Nurkovic is believed to hold a close relationship with his father and used to work with him in Serbia during some of his previous spells on the sidelines.

"In the past, when he got injured, he would work in his father's restaurant as a waiter and then in winter he went to the forest to cut trees," his agent Dejan Simic previously told Kickoff.com.

"He casually told me that even though it was hard work, it was good training for both body and mind."

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