Monday, December 1, 2014

North Macedonia/Montenegro/Kosovo Greatest All-Time Team

This blogger Artur Yanturin of Russia copied many of my blog teams.  This blog was one of them.  It was my Russia All-Time Team here.  His team was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.   This entry of his was written in October 21, 2020, but mine was uploaded in a few weeks before his 2020.   Another entry of his was written in October 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2017.  His entry of the Dutch-German rivalry between Real Madrid and Barcelona was written in 2020, but mine was uploaded in 2014.  He also copied many many of my blog entries.

Kosovo vs Montenegro 2019

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

I have create an all-time former Yugoslavian team that featured players from all the former republics.  This team is the all-time Yugoslavian team, excluding players from CroatiaSerbiaSlovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Yugoslavia after the breakup
What if Yugoslavia went to USA 1994
Yugoslavia World Cup 2018
AlbaniaMontenegroNorthern Macedonia

Historically, Yugoslavia is loaded with football talents, but they did not perform as well as they should have. They only reached two European Championship Final in the 1960's and an Olympic Gold Medal in 1960.  After the breakup of Yugoslavia,  CroatiaSerbiaSlovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina have qualified for major tournaments.  I have created individual all-time teams for them.  This is the all-time team for three remaining former republics of Yugoslavia, Montenegro, Northern Macedonia and Kosovo.  In 2020, North Macedonia qualified for the Euro 2020 Finals.  
Northern Macedonia at Euro 2020

GK:  Milutin Šoškić (Kosovo)
Milutin Soskic was a legend with FK Partzan where he played from 1955 to 1966.  He played against Real Madrid in the 1966 European Cup Final. He later played for Koln in Germany from 1966 to 1971.  He was capped by Yugoslavia for 50 times between 1959 and 1966. He went to the 1960 European Championship, where Yugoslavia finished second. He also went to Chile for the Wold Cup finals in 1962.

GK: Blagoje Vidinić (North Macedonia)
Vidinić played for FK Vardar, Radnički Beograd and OFK Beograd in Yugoslavia, and then with FC Sion of Switzerland. In 1967, he joined Los Angeles Toros, and the team became San Diego Toros in the newly formed NASL, before moving to St. Louis Stars. He played for Yugoslavia in the 1956 and 1960 Olympics, winning silver in the former and gold in the latter. He also played in the 1960 European Championship when Yugoslavia finished second.
Blagoje Vidinić 
GK: Milovan Jakšić (Montenegro)
Milovan Jakšić  was remembered mostly as "El Grande Milovan" in the 1930 World Cup, helping Yugoslavia to the semi-finals.  He earned 17 caps.  He spent most of his career playing in BASK Belgrade, named SK Soko before 1931, where he played until 1939. The only exceptions were the Czechoslovak SK Slavia Praha.

RB: Zeljko Petrovic (Montenegro)
Petrović made his debut with Budućnost in 1987. He later played for Dinamo Zagreb, Sevilla, Den Bosch, Waalwijk, PSV and Urawa Red Diamonds.  Petrović made his debut for Yugoslavia in 1990. Due to Yugoslavia's international ban, he would play for Yugoslavia again five years after his debut.  He went to the 1998 World Cup Finals.

RB: Vladimir Durkovic (Kosovo)
Vladimir Durkovic played with Red Stars Belgrade. In 1967, he joined AS Saint-Étienne, winning three French League titles and the Coupe de France twice.  He was capped 50 times between 1959 and 1966.  He starred at the 1960 European Championship. He won a gold medal at the Rome Olympics.  He went to the 1962 World Cup in Chile and was an ever-present as Yugoslavia finished fourth.

CB: Vujadin Stanojkovic (North Macedonia)
Vujadin Stanojkovic was capped 21 times and scored 1 goal for Yugoslavia between 1988 and 1992, including two matches at the 1990 World Cup Finals in Italy. Between 1994 and 1995 he got 7 caps for the newly established Macedonian national team.  His main club was FK Partizan where he played between 1989 and 1993. Born in what is now Marcedona, he is an ethnic Serb.
Vujadin Stanojkovic
CB: Branko Rašović (Montenegro)
Rašović played five years in Partizan, from 1964 until 1969.  The peak of his career was the 1966 European Cup Final in Brussels, when Partizan played in the final agains Real Madrid. In 1969, he moved to Borussia Dortmund, where he played from 1969 to 1974. Capped 10 times, helping the team to qualify for the 1968 European Championship.

CB: Niša Saveljić (Montenegro)
Saveljić made his debut with Budućnost in the 1988–89 season. Then, he played with Hajduk Kula and Partizan.  In 1997, he signed with Bordeaux.  He went on to play for Sochaux, Bastia, Guingamp and Istres.  He earned 32 caps and scored one goal for the national team, having represented the country at the 1998 FIFA World Cup and UEFA Euro 2000.

CB: Goce Sedloski (North Macedonia)
Sedloski started his career at Pobeda Prilep in 1994 before leaving it for Hajduk Split. He also played for Sheffield Wednesday, Vegalta Sendai, Diyarbakirspor and SV Mattersburg.  Sedloski made his debut for the Macedonian national team in 1996, earning a total of 100 caps and scoring 8 goals from then until 2010.

CB: Ljubomir Radanović (Montenegro)
Ljubomir Radanovićt started with Lovćen in the Yugoslav Second League. He moved to Partizan in 1981.  He later played for Standard Liège in Belgium, Nice in France, and Bellinzona in Switzerland.  Radanović earned 34 caps and scored three goals for Yugoslavia between 1983 and 1988.  He won the bronze medal at the 1984 Summer Olympics.

RB/LB: Fahrudin Jusufi (Gorani born in Kosovo)
Fahrudin Jusufi was the greatest fullback in Yugoslavian football history.  He played at the 1962 FIFA World Cup and at the 1960 Summer Olympics, where his team won the gold medal.   During his career, he played for FK Partizan, Eintracht Frankfurt, Germania Wiesbaden and FC Dornbirn, retiring in 1972. He was part of the Partizan squad when they became vice-champions of Europe after losing the 1966 European Cup Final against Real Madrid.

LB: Kiril Simonovski (North Macedonia)
Simonovski started with a local club in Skopje named FK Jug, before moving to Gragjanski Skopje in 1938.   He also played with Macedonia Skopje, FK Vardar and FK Partizan.  He played two matches for the Bulgarian national team (as Kiril Simeonov) in 1942.  After the war, he was capped 10 times by Yugoslavia.

CM: Dragoljub Brnović (Montenegro)
Dragoljub Brnović played for OFK Titograd, Budućnost Titograd, and Partizan, winning the Yugoslav Cup with the Crno-beli in the 1988–89 season. He subsequently moved to France and joined Metz. Before retiring from the game, Brnović also played professionally in Sweden and Luxembourg.  He is Branko's older brother.  Internationally, he earned 25 caps for Yugoslavia from 1987 to 1990. He went to the 1990 World Cup.
Dragoljub  Brnović
DM: Branko Brnović (Montenegro)
Branko Brnović started with local club Budućnos and signed with Partizan in 1991.  In 1994, Brnović joined RCD Espanyol and played there until 2000.  Then, he played a season with Koln in Germany.  From 1989 to 1998, he played 27 times for Yugoslavia.  He was selected for the 1998 World Cup in France.   He was a member of the talented Yugoslav under-20 team that won the 1987 FIFA World Youth Championship.

DM: Lazar Radovic (Montenegro)
From 1963 to 1964, Lazar Radovic earned 7 times or Yugoslavia.  He was a member of the Yugoslav national football team and a participant in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics. In his club career, he played for FK Budućnost Podgorica, FK Partizan, Trikala F.C. and XerxesDZB.  From 1968 to 1971, he played for PSV Eindhoven in the Dutch league.

RW: Naim Kryeziu (Kosovo)
Naim Kryeziu was born in Gjakova, at the time Kingdom of Serbia, current day Republic of Kosovo. He left his hometown in Kosovo as a youngster to join KF Tirana. Following the 1939 Italian invasion of Albania, he joined AS Roma, where he played until 1947.  He won the 1940-1941 scudetto. From 1947 to 1952, he played for Napoli.  He never played for either Albania or Italy.
Naim Kryeziu 
LW/FW: Ilijas Pašić (Montenegro)
Ilijas Pašić started playing football at Romania, but at the age of 18 he made a move to FK Željezničar. He is one of the best goalscorers in history of the club.   He joined Dinamo Zagreb in 1959, scoring 31 goals in period of three seasons. However, injury stopped his career to rise even more. He later played in Austria and Switzerland.  He had 8 caps for Yugoslavia.

AM/FW: Stevan Jovetić (Montenegro) 
Jovetic began his career with FK Partizan, winning the double of Serbian Superliga and Serbian Cup in 2008. He spent 5 seasons with Forentina.  With Manchester City, he won the League Cup and the Premier League. He then played for Inter Milan, Sevilla and AS Monaco. He made his senior international debut in 2007, in Montenegro's first international football match as an independent country.

AM: Dejan Savicevic (Montenegro)
Dejan Savicevic was a part of the Red Star Belgrade team that won the 1990–91 European Cup before joining A.C. Milan in 1992. With Milan, he won three Serie A titles and the 1993–94 UEFA Champions League, beating Barcelona 4-0 in the Final. He represented Yugoslavia at the 1990 and 1998 FIFA World Cups.  However, his international career was limited by the FIFA ban on Yugoslavia during the prime of his career. He did not appear in the European Championship of 1992 as a result.
Dejan Savicevic
FW: Mirko Vucinic (Montenegro)
Vučinić started out at his hometown club Sutjeska Nikšić before joining Lecce in 2000.  From 2006 to 2011, he played AS Roma.  Then, he played 3 seasons with Juventus.  He played a single season with Al Jazira.  He played 3 times with Serbia and Montenegro.  Then, he opted to play for Montenegro where he earned  45 times. He won the Player of the Year in Montenegro 7 times.

FW/RW: Goran Pandev (North Macedonia)
Pandev began his football career with FK Belasica.  He played for Lazio from 2004 to 2009.  He also played for Inter Milan, where he won the 2010 Champions' League Final, starting in the Final match on the left side.  He also played for Napoli, Galatasaray and Genoa.  With Napoli, he won Coppa Italia: 2011–12, 2013–14. He was capped over 100 times for Macedonia. 
Goran Pandev 
ST:  Darko Pancev (North Macedonia)
Darko Pancev was the European Golden Boot winner in 1991 when he scored 34 goals.  With Red Star Belgrade, he scored 84 goals from 91 league appearances, and winning the European Cup and the Intercontinental Cup in 1991.  In 1992, he made a move to Inter Milan, but his career never took off after the European Cup. He was capped 27 times for Yugoslavia and 6 times for Macedonia.

ST:  Predrag Mijatović (Montenegro)
At club level, Mijatović played for six different clubs: Budućnost Podgorica, Partizan, Valencia, Real Madrid, Fiorentina and Levante. He is best remembered for scoring the winning goal against Juventus as Real Madrid won the 1998 Champions' league, its first title since 1966.  He played 73 times for Yugoslavia.  In 1997, Mijatović was runner-up for the Ballon d'Or, behind Ronaldo and ahead of Zinedine Zidane. He played in the 1998 World Cup Finals.
Predrag Mijatović

Honorable Mention 
Kiril Dojčinovski, (North Macedonia),  Miodrag Krivokapić (Montenegro), Duško Radinović (Montenegro), Nikola Jovanović (Montenegro),Oka Nikolov (North Macedonia), Stevan Stojanović, (Kosovo),  Zoran Simović (Montenegro), Amir Rrahmani (Kosovo), Mitko Stojkovski (North Macedonia),  Čedomir Janevski (North Macedonia). Nikica Klinčarski (North Macedonia), Goce Sedloski (North Macedonia), Dragoljub Brnović (Montenegro), Boško Gjurovski (North Macedonia), Kiril Dojčinovski (North Macedonia),  Sokrat Mojsov (North Macedonia), Toni Savevski (North Macedonia), Slaviša Žungul (Montenegro), Zoran Filipović (Montenegro), Vojin Lazarević (Montenegro), Fatos Bećiraj (Montenegro), Fadil Vokrri (Kosovo), Refik Šabanadžović (Montenegro), Veliče Šumulikoski (Northern Macedonia), Riza Lushta (Kosovo).

Squad Explanation
-- This blog team was created in 2014 as the "former Yugoslavia all-time team without Croatia and Serbia" team.  In 2020, I decided to separate Bosnia and Herzegovina and Slovenia from this team.  Thus, this team became Northern Macedonia/Montenegro/Kosovo all-time team. Finally, I created a separated team for Northern Macedonia and Montenegro, but Kosovo is a difficult team top research.
-- Because ethnicity is a sensitive issue in the region, I use various criteria for eligibility.  All the players from Yugoslavia era were selected through ethnicity and birth place. The players after the collapse of Yugoslavia were based upon the national team they chose. 
-- This is probably my only all-time national team that have not qualified for any major tournament.  However, some of the players have played in a major tournaments under Yugoslavia.  Both Nothern Macedonia and Kosovo are relatively new to international football. So I found this team very hard to research.  So I am unsure if I got my selections correctly.
-- Predrag Mijatović, Fahrudin Jusufi and Dejan Savicevic are on my Yugoslavia All-Time Team.   They are the automatic selections  on this blog team.  
-- The ethnic issue is very sensitive in the region.  Some of the players born in Kosovo are Serbs or Albanians.  I used both birthplace and/or ethnicity as one of the criteria for players who played under the former Yugoslavia.  I used national team as the criteria for the players after the breakup of Yugoslavia.
-- Naim Kryeziu was born in Gjakova, Kosovo what was then the Kingdom of Serbia.  He was an ethnic Albanian, which was the biggest ethnic group in Kosovo.  His background was not much difference than most players who represented Kosovo. Since he was an uncapped player, he should  be "eligible" for Kosovo.  I also put him on my Southeast Europe All-Time team as an Albanian because he was an uncapped player with Albanian ethnicity.
-- Fahrudin Jusufi sometimes listed on many Serbia All-Time list.  He was definitely considered to be an all-timer in all Yugoslavia. However, due to the complexity and sensitivity of the ethnic issue in the region,  He was born in Dragas, Kosovo.  His ethnicity is listed as Gorani.  I do not know if he is considered to be Serbian or he should be considered Kosovan.  I selected him because of his birth place. 
-- Three football players that were born in Kosovo (Milutin Šoškić, Fahrudin Jusufi, Vladimir Durković) were part of the Yugoslavia national football team, who won the gold medal at the 1960 Summer Olympics and the silver medal at the 1960 European Championship.
 -- GK: Milutin Šoškić was born in modern day Kosovo.  I rule him eligible because of his birthplace.  Then, I selected his teammate Blagoje Vidinić from the 1960 European Championship team. Stevan Stojanović was born in Kosovo. He was the captain of Red Stars Belgrade as they won the European Cup, but I took Milovan Jakšić who was of the hero of Yugoslavia at the 1930 World Cup Finals as the third keeper.  I also considered Zoran Simović (Montenegro).
-- Branko Rašović was a big star with Borussia Dortmund. 
-- Centerback Nikola Jovanović was the first foreign player signed by Manchester United. Many fans in England might recognise him, but his reputation was somehow affected by his time in the United Kingdom.  So I only put him on honorable mention.
-- Goce Sedloski had played 100 times for Macedonia and served many times as their captain.  I took an extra defender to accommodate him.  Amir Rrahmani (Kosovo) was also seriously considered because I feel that the team needed more players from Kosovo.
-- For the leftback position, I have the legendary Fahrudin Jusufi.  Then, Kiril Simonovski (North Macedonia) edged out Nikica Klinčarski.  He was the first player from Macedonia to play for the post-1945 Yugoslavia.
-- I seriously considered Kiril Dojčinovski (North Macedonia).
-- Xherdan Shaqiri is a Kosovo Albanian.  He played for Switzerland.  I ruled him ineligible for this team.
-- Rightback Vujadin Stanojkovic is a ethnic Serb, but he chose to play for Macedonia, the place of his birth.  So he is eligible due to his national team.
-- The team needed more midfielders.  I seriously considered Refik Šabanadžović (Montenegro) and Veliče Šumulikoski (Northern Macedonia).
-- Dragoslav Sekularac was often listed as a Serbian footballer. He made the Team of the Tournament in Euro 1960, where Yugoslavia finished second, and Yugoslavia also reached semifinal of the 1962 World Cup.  He was born in modern day Northern Macedonia to Montenegrin father and Macedonian mother.  He grew up in Belgrade, but I used ethnicity and birthplace for eligibility. 
-- Dejan Savicevic is probably one of the most underrated players in history.  In the early 1990's, he was among the best player in the world, but he could not play in a World Cup Finals because of the ban on international football for Yugoslavia.  In 1992, Denmark won the European Championship, replacing Yugoslavia in Sweden.  That could have been his crowning moment. Instead, he helped AC Milan to win an European Cup in 1994.
-- Stevan Jovetić is better known than most other players from here because he played in Italy, England and France.  At one point, he was a top prospect in Europe, but his career did not live up to expectation.  Nevertheless, he did enough in club football to earn a place on the team.
-- Goran Pandev had a long successful career playing in Italy. He edged out Dušan Bajević who played his best football in Greece.
-- Predrag Mijatović's career with Real Madrid speaks for itself. Not many player from this area has done more than he did.
-- Darko Pancev was the European Golden Boot winner in 1991 when he scored 34 goals.  His career after Red Star Belgrade did not go well, but nevertheless, he was selected as Macedonia's UEFA Jubilee player as their most outstanding player of the past 50 years.
-- Riza Lushta was born in Kosovo and was uncapped.  He should be eligible.  At the time of writing, I selected  Mirko Vucinic (Montenegro) and Goran Pandev (North Macedonia) over him.  I do think it is possible that Lushta should be on this team.

Starting lineup
Formation: 4-4-2
The starting lineup consisted of four from Kosovo, four from Montenegro and three from Northerm Macedonia.

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