Why is Serbia manager Dragan Stojkovic called Piksi

    SERBIA have it all to do in the group stages of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar as they seek qualification into the knock-out rounds.

    Facing Brazil on opening day, Dragan Stojkovic’s men will be hoping for a positive result against the favourites for the World Cup.

    Lothar Matthaus of Germany congratulates Yugoslav Dragan Stojkovic after their World Cup match

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    Lothar Matthaus of Germany congratulates Yugoslav Dragan Stojkovic after their World Cup matchCredit: Reuters

    With Cameroon and Switzerland coming soon after, the Serbians will be hoping to put on a positive display in Qatar.

    They will do so under Stojkovic, with the manager having an unusual nickname.

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    Why is Dragan Stojkovic called Piksi?

    During his playing career, Stojkovic plyed his trade for Red Star Belgrade where he enjoyed a successful four years, reaching the sem-finals of the UEFA Cup and wining the Yugoslavia First League on two occasions.

    From here, the player moved to Olympique Marseille and won the Champions League with the club before he ended his career as MVP of the J-league with Nagoya Grampus.

    Yugoslavia’s Dragan Stojkovic celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal against Germany in a group F World Cup match in Lens

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    Yugoslavia’s Dragan Stojkovic celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal against Germany in a group F World Cup match in LensCredit: Reuters

    It was during his playing career where he picked up his iconic nickname, being called ‘Piksi’ in Yugoslavia, even getting the Japanese fans to chant this during his latter days of playing.

    In a high-profile interview in Serbia, Stojkovic revealed that he was called Piksi after a cartoon character that he enjoyed watching, admitting that he never missed an episode.

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    This cartoon was Pixie and Dixie and Mr. Jinks, with him taking the name from the main character.

    The nickname is still used during his managerial days, as he took over at former club Nagoya Grampus in 2008 before joining Guanzhou R&F in 2015 and being named as Serbia national team manager in 2021.

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