Monday, January 20, 2020

What if Austria-Hungary went to 1954

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.   His Spartak Moscow All-Time team entry of was published 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.

His Facebook and Instagram

Hungary 1954

Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.
Argentina World Cup 1946
Hungary World Cup 1950
Sweden World Cup1950
Austria-Hungary World Cup 1954
Angels with Dirty Faces with Di Stefano in the WC 1958
Scotland World Cup 1970
United Kingdom World Cup 1970
England World Cup 1974
United Kingdom World Cup1982
Netherlands Euro 1984 with Cruyff, Van Basten, Gullit
Spain without Catalan players World Cup 2010
If Ronaldo and Messi played for Australia in 2006
Brazil 1982 with Careca,etc
Ireland/Northern Ireland Combined Team 1986 World Cup
Yugoslavia World Cup 2018
Once upon a time, Austria and Hungary belonged to the same country.  In 1950's, Hungary's football was at its peak. Between 1950 and 1956, Mighty Magyars recorded 42 victories, 7 draws and just one defeat before facing West Germany in the 1954 World Cup final.  Their team in that World Cup was considered among the greatest ever team that had never won the World Cup.  In 1954, Austria finished third right behind Hungary at the same World Cup Finals.  Imagine the two nations were still one nation in 1954.  

I am using the map of Austrian-Hungary Empire at the beginning of the First World War as the team selection's criteria.  Players from Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, parts of Italy, Romania, etc are considered.
The map of Austria-Hungary at the outbreak of the First World War

In 1954, both Austria and Hungary had better football reputation than West Germany.  In Germany, the 1954 World Cup Final is known as the Miracle of Bern (German: Wunder von Bern) because the victory was considered a "miracle".  They lost to the West Germans because of a combination bad luck, refereeing decisions, poor weather, an injury to Ferenc Puskas, etc.  Most football experts considered Hungary a better team than West Germany.  They would have beaten the Germans in a rematch without any reinforcement.  So it was easy to say that Austria-Hungary could have won the World Cup, but in actuality, Hungary was beaten by factors not related to the quality of players on their team.  Could this team overcome bad luck, poor weather, etc? Perhaps, this team would do better with László Kubala who could fill the role of a Puskas who just recovered from an injury.
Austria World Cup 1954

Team(only 22 players in 1954)
* I did not list the domestic club teams of individual players.  The political map of Europe would be different.  Budapest Honvéd FC might not exist in this alternative world.  László Kubala might not be playing for Barcelona FC in 1954.

GK: Gyula Grosics (Hungary)
Gyula Grosics was part of the legendary Golden Team of the 1950s. He was nicknamed "Black Panther".  He played in three World Cup Finals: 1954, 1958 and 1962.  He won the Olympic Gold medal in 1952.  He was the starting keeper when Hungary beat England in the historical match in 1952.  At the club level, he played for the legendary Honved FC, but transferred to FC Tatabánya after the 1956 Revolution.
Gyula Grosics
GK: Vladimir Beara  (Yugoslavia)
Vladimir Beara played on three World Cups; 1950, 1954 and 1958.  He was considered one of the greatest keepers from the Warsaw Pact.  With Hajduk Split , he won the Yugoslav league title in 1950, 1952 and 1955. In 1955, he moved to Belgrade's Red Star, where he won even more Yugoslav league titles, in 1956, 1957, 1959, 1960, and won the Yugoslav Cup in 1958 and 1959. He ended his career in German clubs Alemannia Aachen and Viktoria Köln.

GK: Walter Zeman (Austria)
Walter Zeman won 41 caps for Austria and went to the 1954 World Cup Finals, where Austria reached the semifinal before being defeated by the eventual champion West Germany.  Zeman began his youth career at local club SV Wienerberger, but he soon moved on to FC Vienna. In 1945 Zeman joined Rapid Vienna and also won his first cap for the Austria national football team. With Rapid Zeman won 8 Austrian league championships and one Austrian cup.

RB: Branko Stanković (Yugoslavia)
Branko Stanković was best remembered for his career with Red Star Belgrade, where he won 4 league titles and established himself as one of the best defender in Yugoslavian football history.  He participated at two World Cups(1950 and 1954) and twice at Olympic Games. Stanković is one of the most elegant defense players of his time. Because of his playing style, he earned his nickname Ambassador. 

RB: Jenő Buzánszky (Hungary)
During the 1950s, Jenő Buzánszky was a member of the legendary Hungarian national team known as the Mighty Magyars that won the Olympic Gold Medal in 1952 and beat England in the same year.  For club football, he played for Dorogi FC.  He was the only member of the team not to play for either Honvéd or MTK Hungária FC. 

CM/SW: Ernst Happel  (Austria)
Ernst Happel was better known for coaching two European Cup winners and the Dutch national team in the 1978 World Cup Finals.  As a player, he played 14 years for Rapid Vienna, from 1943 till 1954 and 1956 till 1959, winning the Austrian Bundesliga 6 times. He was chosen in Rapid's Team of the Century in 1999.  He had 47 caps.  He played in both 1954 and 1958 WC Finals.
Ernst Happel 
CB: Gyula Lorant  (Hungary)
After the War, Gyula Lorant tried to escape to the West, but was captured by the Communists.  He was released from detention so that he could represent Hungary.  He held 37 caps from 1949 to 1955.  He was a member of the Mighty Magyars that won the Olympic Gold Medal in 1952, beat England twice in 1952 and went the World Cup Final in 1954.  He was one of Hungary's most famous defender. At the club level, he also joined the super team Honved during the early 1950's.

CB/RB: Josef Posipal (Germany)
Josef Posipal was born to an ethnic German family in 1927 in Lugoj, Romania. He lived much of his life in West Germany. During his club career he played for SV Linden 07, SV Arminia Hannover, and Hamburger SV. He was capped 32 times between 1951 and 1956.  He helped West Germany to win their first ever World Cup in 1954. He was one of the best defenders in the 1950's.

LW/LB/CB: Branko Zebec  (Yugoslavia)
Zebec was one of the greatest players ever from Yugoslavia. In his heyday the player from FK Partizan and Red Star Belgrade fascinated the world with his performances at the World Cups in 1954 and 1958. With Partizan he won 3 Yugoslav Cups (1952, 1954, 1957). With Red Star Belgrade he won the national championship in 1960. He led Yugoslavia to second-place at Euro 1960. 
Branko Zebec 
LB: Mihaly Lantos (Hungary)
Mihaly Lantos  is also a member of the Mighty Magyars.  He played for MTK Hungária FC and won three Hungarian titles, a Hungarian Cup and a Mitropa Cup. In 1955, as Vörös Lobogó SE, they also played in the first ever European Cup. Lantos, scoring three goals, including two penalties, helped the club reach the quarter-finals..  He was capped 52 times and scored 5 goals. 

CM: Ernst Ocwirk (Austria) 
Ernst Ocwirk is regarded as one of the greatest Austrian footballers of all time.  He was probably the best centrehalf of his generation.  Between 1945 and 1962, he played 62 times for Austria. He went to the World Cup Finals in 1954, where Austria finished 3rd. He spent the majority of his playing and coaching years between Austria Wien and Sampdoria in Italy. He was the second Austrian to play in Italy. He served as the captain of Sampdoria at one point.
Ernst Ocwirk 
CM/WF: Gerhard Hanappi (Austria)
Gerhard Hanappi is one of Austria's greatest players.  He had 93 caps between 1948 and 1962. He captained the national team from 1955 onward.  He was a participant at the 1954 World Cup Finals, where they reached 3rd place, and at the 1958 World Cup.  He started his career with SC Wacker Wien, but moved to its rival Rapid Wien in 1950.

CM: Karl Koller (Austria)
Karl Koller was one of the best Austrian midfielders of all time and was rated as one of the best 100 European footballers of the 20th century by the IFFHS.  He had 86 caps. He was a participant at the 1954 World Cup in Switzerland, where they reached 3rd place and 1958 World Cup. He earned 86 caps. He is a one club-player for First Vienna.

CM: Jozsef Bozsik (Hungary)
Jozsef Bozsik was considered the second best Hungarian player of all-time after his childhood friend Ferenc Puskus.  He was one of the greatest central midfielders in world football history.  He was also a member of the Mighty Magyars of the 1950's.  At the club level, he played for Honved.  After the Revolution of 1956, he returned to Hungary and continued to play for both Hungary and Honved.  He picked up 101 caps for Hungary between 1947 and 1962.
Jozsef Bozsik 
CM: Zlatko Čajkovski (Yugoslavia)
He was considered one of the best Yugoslavian players ever.  He played for FK Partizan before moving to play for Koln in Germany. Internationally, he played between 1942 and 1943 twice for the Independent State of Croatia, and between 1946 and 1955 he played 55 times for the Yugoslav national team scoring seven goals. Participating at the Olympic Games 1948 and 1952 he won the silver medal on both occasions.  He also participated in the FIFA World Cups of 1950 and 1954. 

LW/FW: Istvan Nyers (Hungary)
Istvan Nyers was of the same age as the members of the Mighty Magyars, but he was not a member of them.  He was capped twice by Hungary between 1945 and 1946. Born in France of Hungarian immigrants, he moved back to Hungary and played for various clubs in Eastern Europe.  He joined Inter Milan in 1948, where he won two Serie A titles and finished as the top scorer of the league.

FW: Laszlo Kubala (Czechoslovakia/Hungary)
Born in Hungary of a multi-cultural background, Laszlo Kubala  was known as one of the greatest Barcelona players ever.  He still managed to win 4 Li Liga titles in the 1950's in an era dominated by Real Madrid.  In 1961, Barcelona eliminated Real Madrid from the European Cup, the first ever loss by Real Madrid at the tournament. He was capped by Hungry, Spain and Czechoslovakia. He was a guest player for Catalonia national football team.
Laszlo Kubala 
FW: Nandor Hidegkuti (Hungary)
Nandor Hidegkuti was a key member of the Might Magyars of the 1950's.  He was best remembered for the game vs England in 1953, where he scored a hat-trick.  Playing as a "False 9", the English defenders did not know how to defend him. A new position was born and the game was revolutionized. Unlike some of his teammates from the Mighty "Mgyars", he stayed in Hungary after 1956 and went to the 1958 World Cup Finals as an aging player.At the club level, he played for MTK Budapest.

LW: Zoltan Czibor (Hungary)
Zoltan Czibor was widely considered to be one of the greatest left winger in history.  He was also a member of the Mighty Magyars of the 1950's.  After 1956. he fled to the West. He joined Ladislao Kubala and Sándor Kocsis to play for FC Barcelona. Together with Ramallets, Evaristo and Luis Suárez, they formed the great Barcelona team of the 1950's. He later played for Espanyol, t FC Basel, FK Austria Wien and Primo Hamilton FC.
Zoltan Czibor 
LW/FW: Bernard Vukas (Yugoslavia)
In 2000, Bernard Vukas was voted by the Croatian Football Federation as the best Croatian player of all time.  He had 59 caps for Yugoslavia. He was also a part of the Yugoslavia team in the 1950 FIFA World Cup and 1954 FIFA World Cup.  With Yugoslavia he won 2 silver medals in the Olympic games: 1948 and 1952. His career was associated with Hajduk Split, but in 1957, he moved to Bologna in Italy, where he stayed for two years. He also played in Austria at the end of his career.

ST: Sandor Kocsis (Hungary)
Sandor Kocsis was a prolific goalscorer for the Mighty Magyars in the 1950's.   He scored 75 goals in 68 appearances for Hungary.  He scored 11 goals at the WC in 1954, the second highest for a single tournament.  He played for Honved at home before he went to play for Barcelona after the Soviet invasion in 1956.  With fellow Hungarian exiles Ladislao Kubala and Zoltan Czibor, Barcelona became a force in Europe.

ST/FW: Ferenc Puskas (Hungary)
Ferenc Puskas was one of the greatest footballers in history.  He scored 84 goals in 85 international matches for Hungary, a team known as Mighty Magyars. He became Olympic champion in 1952 and led his nation to the final of the 1954 World Cup where he was named the tournament's best player.  He played with Honved at home and went to Real Madrid in 1958 after the Soviet invasion.  With Alfredo Di Stefano, Raymond Kapo, etc, Real Madrid became the greatest club team in history.
Ferenc Puskas

Players considered
László Budai (Hungary), Péter Palotás (Hungary), József Zakariás (Hungary), Bernard Vukas (Yugoslavia), Stjepan Bobek (Yugoslavia), Alfred Körner (Austria), Guido Gratton (Italy), Mykhaylo Mykhalyna (USSR),  Mihály Tóth (Hungary),  Josef Posipal (West Germany). Walter Zeman (Austria). 

Squad Explanation 
-- Okay.  I am running out of ideas to create super teams.  I admitted this was a far fetched idea.  Austria-Hungary had been gone for 40 years at the time of the 1954 World Cup Finals.  
-- The team was created in 2022.  After I examined my Hungary All-Time team in July, 2022, I created the imaginary Hungary World Cup team in 1950.  So in August, 2022, my mind was full of information around Hungarian football in the 1950's.  So I did a comprehensive review of the team.  I thought the research I did in 1954 was very substandard.  I probably did not taken the topic seriously, given that this team was the most bizarre team in my blog.
-- Why Austria-Hungary? As you might have known, Hungary 1954 was considered to be the greatest ever team that never won the World Cup.  They lost to West Germany in the Final match that was known as the "Miracle of Bern". Austria also finished third, but was one of the pre-tournament favorites.  Imagine this two teams combined. Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia were also in the World Cup Finals with Yugoslavia reaching the quarterfinal.
-- If nothing happened on 28 June 1914 in Sarajevo that started the First World War, the world would be a different place.  But even if nothing happened, Austria-Hungary Empire might not exist by 1954. Certainly, the map of the Empire in 1954 would not be the same as the one in 1914.  But I  still based the team on the territory held by Austria-Hungary at the beginning of the First World War.
-- Manager Jimmy Hogan was often credited of changing the way football was played in continental Europe, especially Austria and Hungary.  Hogan's style was that of short passing game with emphasis on controlling possession.  He later influenced Austria's Wunderteam of the 1930's.  Gusztáv Sebes, coach of Hungary of the 1950's also credited him for his influence.  
-- No FIFA All-Stars team was selected at the end of the tournament in 1954.  The year 1954 was not covered by Castrol Football's rating. I found two unofficial selections through Wikipedia, but I was skeptical of their legitimacy. I was sure that they did some homework, but did they ever look into every single matches of the tournament?  Nevertheless, the players on two polls included: Ferenc Puskas (Hungary), Sandor Kocsis (Hungary),  Zoltan Czibor (Hungary), Nandor Hidegkuti (Hungary), Jozsef Bozsik (Hungary), Ernst Ocwirk (Austria), Vladimir Beara (Yugoslavia) and Gyula Grosics (Hungary).  They were all big names at the time.
-- In the actual World Cup, West Germany defeated Yugoslavia in quarter-final, Austria in the semi-final and finally, Hungary in the Final.  Although Austria finished third, they were disappointed with the result, especially losing to West Germany in the semifinal.  Manager Walter Nausch resigned soon after.
-- In 1954, only 22 players were on the World Cup roster. This team consisted of 10 Hungarians, 5 Austrians, 5 Yugoslavians and a German.  The 22nd player was Laszlo Kubala who was of mixed backgrounds.
-- In 1953, England played against the Rest of the World selection.  England trailed three times against them in the match. Alf Ramsey scored a penalty in the 90th minute to salvage a 4-4 draw for England.  The result was considered astonishing as England never lost to a continental side at home and they nearly did.  Less than a month later, England was destroyed by Hungary in the Match of the Century.  Gerhard Hanappi, Zlatko Čajkovski, Jupp Posipal, Ernst Ocwirk, László Kubala, Bernard Vukas and Branko Zebec started in the game.  Goalkeeper Vladimir Beara came into the game at half-time for Walter Zeman of Austria.  
The Rest of World had 6 players on this team
-- In May, 1953, Rapid Wien beat the newly crowned English champion Arsenal 6-1 that made headlines across Europe. I could not find the lineup that day.  However, Austria's team in the 1954 World cup featured 10 players from Rapid Wien.
-- Zlatko Čajkovski, Vladimir Beara and Branko Zebec was born in Croatia while Branko Stanković was born in Sarajevo.  Those regions belonged to Austria-Hungary Empire in 1914.  All four players from Yugoslavia were household names in the history of football.
-- Italy's football was at one of its darkest ages.  From 1950 to 1968, Italy never went beyond the group stage of the World Cup Finals.  They did win the 1968 European Championship, but that would be 14 years away from 1954.  Giampiero Boniperti who was their 1954 World Cup captain was their only player of note, but he was not born in an area that belonged to Austria-Hungary Empire at the beginning the War.  
-- Parts of Ukraine and Italy belonged to Austria-Hungary.  I would have selected anyone who was born in the regions that belonged to the empire at the outbreak of the First World War.  Football in Romania and Poland were still relatively unknown in 1954. I did not do any research on their players, but I selected Romania-born Jupp Posipal.
--The political map of Europe would be different.  The Hungarian government probably would not create the superteam Budapest Honvéd FC.  László Kubala might not be playing for Barcelona FC in 1954. So I did not list the club team of individual players.
-- No set number of goalkeepers was required for the World Cup in 1954.  
-- Three all-timers played in this World Cup Finals.  I took Vladimir Beara  (Yugoslavia) and Gyula Grosics (Hungary).  They were was voted into the Team of Tournament by the two teams I found on the internet respectively.  
-- Walter Zeman is on my Austria All-Time team.  In 1953, he represented the Rest of the World against England as their starting goalkeeper, which was then considered an honor.  He was the main goalkeeper for Austria throughout 1953 and 1954. However, he suffered a knee injury.  For Austria, he went to the World Cup Finals because he was their best keeper, but thie team had Beara and Grosics.  Kurt Schmied became the starting goalkeeper in World Cup Finals for Austria.  Schmied under the heat collapsed in the quarterfinal against host Switzerland.  The match was later known by as "Hitzeschlacht von Lausanne (The heat battle of Lausanne), due to the high temperature that it was played under.  Zeman took over the semifinal match against West Germany.  Austria was destroyed 6-1, and Zeman was blamed for the loss.
Viliam Schrojf was voted the best goalkeeper at the 1962 World Cup Finals.   He is on both of my Czechoslovakia and Slovakia all-time teams.  He did not play in 1954.  Czechoslovakia altered between Imrich Stacho and Theodor Reimann for their two matches.  Stacho was the backup goalkeeper on my Slovakia all-time team.
-- Beara was born in modern day Croatia.  He was of Serbian ethnicity.  He played for Hajduk Split before joining Red Stars Belgrade.  Croatia was a part of Austria-Hungary, but only a small part of Serbia belonged there.
-- Basically, I ran down the list of the most famous defenders in their positions at the 1954 World Cup Finals. I did not really study too much into their performance prior to the summer of 1954.  
-- Gyula Lorant actually had a poor tournament in 1954, but it would be irrelevant because this selection was about before the World Cup.  He wanted to retire after the World Cup because the defeat against West Germany.
Gyula Lorant 
-- Branko Zebec was almost liked a utility player.  He also played as a Center-half.  Branko Stanković played liked a modern attacking fullback.
-- In 2020, I incorrectly selected Karl Stotz.  He did not play in the World Cup Finals.  I did not know much about that period of time in Austria.  So in 2022, I replaced him with Josef Posipal.  Posipal was an important defender on West Germany's national team in the 1954 World Cup, and he was one of the top defenders of his time. He played for the Rest of the World team against England in October, 1953.  He was born in Lugoj, Romania.  His father was a Danube Swabian, living in the Hungarian part of town, and his mother was Hungarian.  He understood Hungarian, and said to be an advisor to German coach Sepp Herberger before and during the 1954 World Cup Finals on the Mighty Magyars.  Ferenc Puskas said to have talked to Posipal during the first World Cup game between Germany and Hungary about defender Werner Liebrich who was guarding and later injured Puskas.  In the 1940's, he had Romanian citizenship before becoming a German citizen.  
-- Ladislav Novak (Czech Republic) later helped Czechoslovakia to finish second in the 1962 World Cup Finals. He was on both of my Czechoslovakia and Czech Republic All-Time team. I put him as honourable mention.  
-- Many of the midfielders could drop back to defense while the defenders could move up the field.
-- Jozsef Bozsik was probably the best midfielder in the 1950's.
-- Ernst Ocwirk moved from Austria to Sampdoria Genoa in May 1956 for a fee of 160,000 marks.  He was the second Austria to play in Serie A.  The other two Austrian midfielders were well-known at the time of the World Cup Finals.  Gerhard Hanappi would be Austrian Sportsman of the Year the year after the World Cup Finals.  Unliked Ocwick and Hanappi, Karl Koller did not play for Rapid.  He played for First Vienna, winning the league in the 1954-1955 season.
-- Zlatko Čajkovski was the best Yugoslav player at the World Cup in 1950. He was a member of the Olympic team that lost the Gold medal to Hungary in 1952.  Yugoslavia, however, beat the Soviet Union a political charged match.
Zlatko Čajkovski
-- Carpathian Ruthenia was a part of Austria-Hungary Empire before the First World War. By 1954, it was a part of USSR(Ukraine).  Mykhaylo Mykhalyna played club football in what was then Hungary before and during the war. He was ranked 3rd at the 1952 Ukrainian Football of the Year.  He actually made his debut with the Soviet national B team against Hungary in September, 1954.  He was born in Carpathian Ruthenia in 1924. Yozhef Betsa who won a Gold Medal for the USSR in 1956 was born in Mukachevo, which was a part of the area. In 1955, he earned his only cap for the Soviet Union.  He was an ethnic Magyar.  Both players won't make this team.
-- Guido Gratton of Italy's World Cup team was born in Friuli Venezia Giulia, which was a part of Austria-Hungary Empire at the beginning of the War.  He joined Fiorentina the season before the World Cup Finals. He was a member of my Fiorentina All-Time Team, but the Golden age of the club had not begun.  He was not a main player on Italy's team at the World Cup Finals.  Several other Italian players from the 1954 World Cup were born in Veneto.  The area was a part of Austria-Hungary, but it left the Empire after the Treaty of Vienna (1866).  So they were not eligible.  LB Sergio Cervato was born in Padua, Veneto. He would have been helpful to this team.  He was in his prime in 1954, but he also did not play in Switzerland. He is also a member of my Fiorentina all-Time team.
-- Giuseppe Grezar who died in the Superga Air Disaster in 1949 was born in Trieste, which was a part of Austria-Hungary.  If he was alive in 1954, he would be 35 years old.  Hungary-born Július Schubert was also killed in same disaster.  He only played for Torino less than a year (5 games) and was used as a backup for Mazzola.  I don't consider dead players for this team. Kubala was also due to fly that day, but he canceled the trip because his son fell ill.
-- Liked Kubala, István Nyers did not play in the World Cup Finals. He was a stateless exile from Hungary in 1954.  In the 1953-1954 season, István Nyers had a disagreement with Inter Milan's management.  He was often benched and managed only 8 goals that season, but he considered a big star player at the time.  He moved to AS Roma in the summer of 1954, where he did enjoy two more great seasons.  I took him over Mihály Tóth (Hungary) who was also a left wing/forward.
-- The team needed a right winger.  Gusztáv Sebes placed Zoltán Czibor on the right wing while benching László Budai and starting Mihály Tóth in the World Cup final against West Germany.  I doubted his tactics was to use Czibor as an inverted winger, a position that should be revolutionary in 1954.  The big right wingers in Hungary at the time were László Budai and Károly Sándor. László Budai formed a world-famous partnership with  Sándor Kocsis at the club level as well as on the Golden Team.  Gusztáv Sebes wanted to carry in their partnership on the national team so Károly Sándor was behind László Budai.  He was not even included in the 1952 Olympic team, and a non-playing member on the 1954 World Cup team.  Nevertheless, he was recognized one of the greatest Hungarian footballers of that era. I did not select either of them. Simply, there were not enough space.
-- Seven months before the World Cup Finals, Nandor Hidegkuti as the "false 9" shocked the football world with his brilliant play against England in the "Match of the Century".  He was the reason why the English defenders had no answer to Hungary's attacks.  Ferenc Puskas was probably the best player in the world at the time, and Sandor Kocsis needed no introduction.
-- László Kubala did not play in the 1954 World Cup Finals because of the political situation at the time.  But in this alternative world without the same political events that affected the region, he might have probably stayed in Slovakia or Hungary.  In 1954, he was in his prime playing for Barcelona.  He scored 23 goals in the league, his second most productive year in Spain. His inclusion to team added a lot of excitement.
-- Bernard Vukas starred for the Rest of the World team against England in 1953. He assisted two of the goals in a 4-4 draw.  In 2020, I gave the forward spots to the Hungarians and Erich Probst.  Probst scored 6 goals in the actual 1954 World Cup Finals, but he was a relatively a forgotten player.  At the time of the World Cup selection, no one would know what he would do in the Finals.  So Bernard Vukas had a better reputation prior to the World Cup Finals.  I did ponder if the team needed Vukas since he was a left wing forward when I already had Zoltán Czibor and Istvan Nyers.  Ultimately, I went with the bigger name in football.
Bernard Vukas
-- Milos Milutinović was born in Serbia, which was not a part of Austria-Hungary empire.
-- István Nyers was the only member of the team who did not make my All-Time team of his country respectively (Austria HungaryCzechoslovakia and Former Yugoslavia).  
--  Stjepan Bobek was the top scorer that season in Yugoslavia, but he only played two games in Switzerland.  He would break Yugoslavia's international scoring record later that year.  However, I rated him lower than the players I selected.
-- Ferenc Deak was an active player in 1954.  He had fallen out of favorite with the Hungarian national team due to the politics at the time.  He had not played for them since 1949.  His statistics after the 1948-1949 season also dropped.  So he was not going to be on this team because of his fitness level.

The frontline is similar to the formation Hungary used in 1954.  Nandor Hidegkuti operates as the "false 9".  At Barcelona FC, László Kubala also played with Sándor Kocsis and Zoltán Czibor in a similar formation.  I believed Kubala on the right side.   Ernst Happel  on the right might be a question mark.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Bosnia and Herzegovina 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.   His Spartak Moscow All-Time team entry of was published 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.

His Facebook and Instagram

Bosnia and Herzegovina World Cup 2014
Please also see my All-Time World Cup Team Index.

Yugoslavia after break up
Yugoslavia World Cup 2018
Serbia Croatia, Slovenia
Yugoslavia World Cup 1994

In 2014, I create an all-time Yugoslavian team that featured players from all the former republics.  Later I created an all-time team for Croatia and Serbia Then, I also posted an all-time Yugoslavian team, excluding players from Croatia and Serbia.  In 2019, I decided to create individual all-time team for Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Both countries have qualified for the World Cup Finals after the breakup of Yugoslavia.  My All-time Yugoslavian team, excluding players from Croatia and Serbia became Macedonia/Montenegro/Kosovo.  In 2022, I finally created Yugoslavia after break up All-Time Team.

All the players from Yugoslavia era were selected through ethnicity and birth place.  I found this region full of players who are Croats and Serbs. It was difficult for me to determine if the player should be on the team or how they feel about being on this team.  Birth place became my main criteria for eligibility.  Any player born here are entitled to be on this team.  My team included footballers who probably would not be considered to be on most Bosnia and Herzegovina All-Time team.  I apologised to any ill feeling that I might cause due to the political and sensitive nature of the situation in this country.

Bosnia and Herzegovina have seen a steady rise in their fortunes on the international football stage in recent times.  From 1920 to 1992, the players lined up for Yugoslavia. After its independence, Bosnia and Herzegovina have to wait until the 1998 FIFA World Cup qualifiers to compete for a place in a major competition.  Bosnia and Herzegovina finally qualified for the 2014 World Cup.

This is my all-time team for Bosnia and Herzegovina. If there were an All-Time World Cup, this would be the 23 players I would bring to the tournament.  

GK: Asmir Begovic (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
The Begović family fled the Bosnian War to Germany and moved Canada when Asmir was 10 years old. He grew up in Canada and played for their youth team before switching to play for Bosnia and Herzegovina senior team. He helped Bosnia and Herzegovina to qualify for the WC in 2014.  Professionally, he started with Portsmouth. He spent most of his career with Stoke City in England. He was used as a backup for Chelsea.
Asmir Begovic
GK: Enver Marić (Yugoslavia)
Enver Marić started his career playing for FK Velež Mostar from 1967 to 1976, for who he played a record 600 games in his nine-year stint. Marić then went on to play for German club FC Schalke 04 from 1976 to 1978 and the Yugoslavia national team at the 1974 FIFA World Cup. He was capped 32 times for Yugoslavia in the period from 1972 to 1976.

GK: Ivan Ćurković (Yugoslavia)
Curkovic played as a goalkeeper for Velež Mostar, Partizan and Saint-Étienne. Ćurković was a goalie of outstanding quality who played for AS Saint-Étienne during the 1970s and early1980s and was instrumental in the successful runs of Saint-Étienne's football club to the top of the French League and to the finals of the European Cup in the 1975–76 season. He played alongside French legend Michel Platini from 1978 to 1981.  Capped 19 times for Yugoslavia.

RB:  Mirsad Fazlagić (Yugoslavia)
Mirsad Fazlagić played 450 matches for FK Sarajevo in the Yugoslavian First League.   He made 19 appearances for Yugoslavia. He is especially known internationally for being the captain of Yugoslavia during the 1968 European Football Championship, where they came second by barely losing to the home side Italy after a two-legged final in Rome. 

RB: Branko Stanković (Yugoslavia)
Branko Stanković was best remembered for his career with Red Star Belgrade, where he won 4 league titles and established himself as one of the best defender in Yugoslavian football history.  He participated at two World Cups(1950 and 1954) and twice at Olympic Games. Stanković is one of the most elegant defense players of his time. Because of his playing style, he earned his nickname Ambassador. 

Mirsad Fazlagić
CB: Faruk Hadžibegić (Yugoslavia)
Faruk Hadžibegić was capped 61 times for Yugoslavia from 1982 to 1992.  He went to the World Cup Finals in 1990.  He is the second most capped Bosian player for Yugoslavian national team and and fifth overall most capped player for the Yugoslavia national football team (61 caps).  During his career he played for FK Sarajevo, Real Betis, FC Sochaux and Toulouse FC.

CB: Mirsad Hibić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Hibić had been a prolific part of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team since its inception, having been capped 35 times, 14 as captain. At club level, he played for NK Čelik Zenica and Hajduk Split.  In 1996, he moved to Sevilla FC, and then, he joined Atlético Madrid in 2000 before retiring in January 2004.

CB: Emir Spahić (Bosnia and Herzegovina) 
Emir Spahić was the captain of Bosnia and Herzegovina at the 2014 World Cup Finals.  He had played 94 times for the national team.  Over the course of his club career, Spahić played for Zagreb, Shinnik Yaroslavl, Lokomotiv Moscow, Sevilla, Anzhi Makhachkala, Montpellier, Bayer Leverkusen, Hamburger SV, etc.  He is a first cousin of fellow national team player Edin Džeko.
CB:  Josip Katalinski  (Yugoslavia) 
Josip Katalinski was capped 41 times for Yugoslavia.  He went to European Championship in 1976.  He scored the winning goal for the game against Spain that helped Yugoslavia to qualify for the World Cup Finals in 1974.  He played for FK Željezničar from 1965 to 1975. He made more than 250 league appearances, and although he was a defender, he scored 48 league goals. In 1975, he joined Nice in France. 
Josip Katalinski
LB: Sead Kolašinac (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Born in Germany, Sead Kolašinac had represented Germany at the youth level, but he chose to play for Bosnia and Herzegovina since 2013.  He represented his country at the 2014 World Cup Finals.  From 2012 to 2017, he played for Schalke 04.  He was named the Bundesliga Team of the Year twice.  In 2018, he moved to play for Arsenal.

LB: Džemal Hadžiabdić (Yugoslavia)
Džemal Hadžiabdić made his debut in 1971 with his native Velez Mostar, where he spent nine seasons. In 1980, he moved to Swansea City in Wales. In his first season abroad, he helped the new team to advance to the top of the English division, where he managed to spend two more seasons before finishing his career in 1982. He made his debut for Yugoslavia in a September 1974 friendly match against Italy and has earned a total of 20 caps, scoring no goals.

DM/RB: Refik Šabanadžović (Yugoslavia)
Refik Šabanadžović  began with OFK Titograd before he moved to Sarajevo's Željezničar in 1983.  He helped the club to reach the UEFA Cup semifinals in the 1984–85 season. He played for Red Stars Belgrade from 1987 to 1991, where he won the European Cup in 1991.  With AEK, he won three league championship in the 1990's.   He also played for Olympiacos and Kansas City Wizards.  He was capped 8 times.  He played 4 games at the 1990 World Cup Finals.

CM: Miralem Pjanić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Miralem Pjanić started his career at Metz in France.  He signed for Lyon in 2008 before signing for Roma in 2011. In 2016. Pjanić joined Juventus.  He was named Serie A Team of the Year for 2015–16, 2016–17 and 2017–18 seasons.  Pjanić made his senior international debut for Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2008, earning over 90 caps and scoring 15 goals since. He went to the 2014 World Cup.  He had represented Luxembourg at youth levels.
Miralem Pjanić 
CM: Mehmed Baždarević (Yugoslavia/Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Mehmed Baždarević collected 54 caps and scored 4 goals for Yugoslavia between 1983 and 1992, and another 2 caps for Bosina and Herzegovina after the breakup of Yugoslavia.  However, the team was not recognised by FIFA until 1995 in part due to the Bosnian War.  He went the Euro 1984 held in France.  He played for FK Željezničar Sarajevo and went to the UEFA semifinal in 1985.

RW/RB: Hasan Salihamidžić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Hasan Salihamidžić is best remembered for playing 9 seasons with Bayern Munich.  With Bayern, he won the 2001 Champions' League final, scoring one of the penalties in the shootout win in the Final. He also played for Juventus and Wolfsburg. At the international level, he earned 43 caps and scored six goals for the Bosnia and Herzegovina national team. He is regarded by many as one of the most successful Bosnian football players in recent times.
Hasan Salihamidžić 
LW: Enver Hadžiabdić (Yugoslavia)
Hadžiabdić is so far the only person in Željezničar history to have won league titles both as a player and as a manager. As a player he won the Yugoslav First League with Željezničar in 1972 and the First League of Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1998.  He played for Željezničar between 1965 and 1974.  Then, he played for Charleroi for three years.  For Yugoslavia, he was capped 12 times.  He played in the 1974 FIFA World Cup.

AM/SS: Blaž Slišković (Yugoslavia/Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Slišković had a good career with Hajduk Split and Marseille. In 2011, he was chosen in the "Hajduk Split Best 11 of all-time. He also played for FK Velež Mostar, Hajduk Split, Pescara, RC Lens, FC Mulhouse, Rennes, NK Hrvatski Dragovoljac and HŠK Zrinjski.  In 1985, he was named the Yugoslav Footballer of the Year.  He was capped 26 times for Yugoslavia.  He missed the 1982 World Cup Finals and Euro 1983.  In 1993, he played three matches for Bosnia and Herzegovina.

AM: Ivica Osim (Yugoslavia)
Ivica Osim was born in Bosnia of a mixed family in 1941. He played with FK Željezničar Sarajevo before moving aboard in 1970.  Apart from three months in Holland, he played mostly in France. In France, he played for Valenciennes, Sedan and again at Strasbourg. He was capped 16 times for Yugoslavia.  He reached the Final at Euro 1968.

AM: Safet Sušić (Yugoslavia)
Safet Sušić was one of the greatest Yugoslavian players.  He played for FK Sarajevo, Paris Saint-Germain and Red Star Saint-Ouen and internationally for Yugoslavia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was voted Paris Saint-Germain's best player of all time and the best foreign player of Ligue 1 of all time by France Football.  He represented Yugoslavia at the 1982 and 1990 World Cups, and at the European Championship 1984. In 1993, he played twice for Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Safet Sušić 
ST: Vedad Ibišević (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
In 2004, he joined PSG.  Then, he joined Alemannia Aachen, and in 2007, he moved to 1899 Hoffeneheim, where he played until 2012.  From 2012 to 2016, he played for Stuttgart. At the time of writing, he is with Hertha Berlin. In 2008, he won the Idol Nacije award(Bosnian Footballer of the Year). From 2007 to 2017, he has earned over 80 caps for Bosnia and Herzegovina. He was selected for the 2014 World Cup, where he scored Bosnia's first ever goal in a major tournament.

FW: Vahid Halilhodžić (Yugoslavia)
Regarded as one of the best Yugoslav players in the 1970s and 1980s, Halilhodžić had successful playing spells with Velež Mostar, and French clubs Nantes and Paris Saint-Germain before retiring in the mid-1980s. He also appeared for the Yugoslav national team and was part of the squads which won the 1978 European Under-21 Championship before earning 15 full international caps for Yugoslavia. 
Vahid Halilhodžić
ST: Zlatko Vujovic (Yugoslavia)
Born in Sarajevo, Vujović started his career with HNK Hajduk Split, making his first division debuts at just 18.  He was named Yugoslav Footballer of the Year in 1981 by the Večernji list daily. In 1986, both siblings moved to compete in France, first with FC Girondins de Bordeaux: in their first season both were undisputed starters in an eventual double.  He earned 70 caps for Yugoslavia.  He was the captain of the 1990 World Cup team.
ST: Edin Džeko (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
Edin Dzeko is probably the most famous player for Bosnia and Herzegovina not from the era under Yugoslavia. He has played over 80 times for his country and scored 52 goals since 2007, becoming the highest Bosnia and Herzegovina goalscorer of all time. He led Bosnia and Herzegovina to qualify for the World Cup in 2014.  He had a great career with Wolfsburg and moved to Manchester City in 2011.  At the time of writing, he plays for Roma, helping the club to reach the semifinal of the Champions' League in 2018.
Edin Džeko 

Honorable Mention
Sergej Barbarez, Dušan Bajević, Asim Ferhatović, Muhamed Mujić, Meho Kodro, Ilija Pantelić, Džemal Hadžiabdić, Džemal Mustedanagić, Edhem Šljivo, Sergej Barbarez, Franjo Vladić, Vedin Musić, Zlatan Bajramović, Boro Primorac, Vahidin Musemić, Josip Bukal, Elvir Baljić, Florijan Matekalo, Petar Manola, Milan Rajlić, Stanko Zagorac, Ibrahim Biogradlić, Vahidin Musemić, Muhamed Konjić,  Zoran Vujovic, Dusan Bajevic, Asim "Hase" Ferhatović, Elvir Rahimić, Mirsad Baljić, Davor Jozić, Elvir Bolić. 
Milan Rajlić, Petar Manola, Edin Višća.

Squad Explanation
-- I wanted to do a review immediately after I created Yugoslavia after breakup All-Time Team.  I did a review of this team on March, 2022, only two years after its creation.  I went over the ethnic issue, which had been causing me a lot of issues.
-- 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.  I found this region full of players who are Croats and Serbs. It was difficult for me to determine if the player should be on the team or how they feel about being on this team.  The birth place became my main criteria for eligibility.  Any player born here are entitled to be on this team.  My team included footballers who probably would not be considered to be on most other Bosnia and Herzegovina All-Time team.  I apologised to any ill feeling that I might cause due to the political and sensitive nature of the situation in this country. The players after the collapse of Yugoslavia were based upon the national team they chose. 
-- Safet Sušić, Edin Džeko, and Hasan Salihamidžić undoubtedly stand out as the country's finest players. Their inclusion in this list is unquestionable. Additionally, Josip Katalinski, Branko Stanković, and Miralem Pjanić also deserve a place here. 
-- Branko Stanković and Josip Katalinski are on my Yugoslavia All-Time team.  I left Safet Sušić off that team because Yugoslavia had plenty of great attack midfielders, but he was probably the best player not selected over there.
-- Bosnia and Herzegovina qualified for their first ever major tournament in 2014 when they reached the World Cup Finals in Brazil. Edin Džeko, Miralem Pjanić, Sead Kolašinac and Asmir Begovic made this all-time team.
-- During the 1968 European Championship, Yugoslavia secured the second position. Leading the team as the captain was Mirsad Fazlagić, while Ivica Osim also made his mark as a player within the squad.
-- Yugoslavia reached the semi-final of the European Championship in 1960 and 1976.  No one from this area went to the 1960 tournament, but in 1976, Vahid Halilhodžić and Josip Katalinski were on the team.  
-- The region was very talented with goalkeepers, Ivan Ćurković, Enver Marić and Ilija Pantelić were considered to be the best five goalkeepers for Yugoslavia after Vladimir Beara (Croatia/Serbia) and Milutin Šoškić (Kosovo). 
-- Ivan Ćurković enjoyed a remarkable career with Saint-Étienne, leaving a lasting mark. Enver Marić, on the other hand, made a name for himself both as a prominent figure for Yugoslavia during the 1970s and through his successful club career in Germany. Ilija Pantelić was born in modern day Bosnia and Herzegovina, which was then IS Croatia.  He served as the starting goalkeeper during Euro 1968. Despite being a Bosnian Serb, his ethnic background did not impact his standing within the team. However, I opted for Marić due to his stronger association with the region, having achieved stardom with FK Velež Mostar. Pantelić and Ćurković may have been Bosnian Serbs, which some individuals may have considered as Serbian, but for this team, I prioritized their place of birth as the primary criterion.
Enver Marić 
-- Ivan Ćurković was born in Mostar.  From 1989 until 2006, Ćurković was president of FK Partizan. He was the president of the Serbian Olympic Committee until February 2009.  In 2009, he became the vice-president of the Serbian Football Association. He seemed to have absorbed into the Serbian society.  However, he remained eligible due to his birth place. I could not determine the nationality and ethnicity of many players from Yugoslavia so I strictly used birth place as one of the main criterias.
 -- When I created the original Yugoslavia All-Time Team (including players from former republics in 2014, I included Asmir Begović, but I probably overrated him.  At the time, he was a goalkeeper on the rise with Stoke.  But when I separated that team into two teams, namely Yugoslavia and Yugoslavia after the breakup in 2022.  My impression of him changed.  His career after 2015 seemed stalled.  However, Begovic helped the national team to qualify for the World Cup Finals.  So I kept him on this team.  Upon further review (in March, 2022), I kept him over Ilija Pantelić.  Pantelić was as good as anyone in the pool.  He was often listed as the third or fourth greatest ever goalkeeper from Yugoslavia.  He was even ranked ahead of Curkovic by some sources.
-- Samir Handanović is also a Bosniak born in Slovenia, but he is ineligible because he opted to play for Slovenia.  
-- I have some big names central defenders on the team.  Faruk Hadžibegić and Josip Katalinski were great defenders from the Yugoslavian era.  Mirsad Hibić and Emir Spahić also captained Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Muhamed Konjić was the first captain of the national team after independence, but I put him on honourable mention.  
-- Josip Katalinski was one of Yugoslavia's greatest central defenders.  He helped FK Željezničar to win its only Yugoslavia league title.  He was a local hero as well as a national hero.
-- Faruk Hadžibegić was remembered for missing the penalty against Argentina in the shootout during the quarterfinal of the 1990 World Cup Finals.  With 61 caps, he was tied for 5th alongside Branko Stankovic as the most capped player for Yugoslavia.  
Mirsad Fazlagić
-- Dejan Lovren was born in modern day Bosnia, but he played for Croatia where he grew up.
-- Branko Stankovic is listed as a Bosnian Serb.  He was born in Sarajevo. Of course, he made this team.  But since ethnicity is a serious issue in the region, he is also listed on my Serbia all-time team.  He is 5th most capped player in Yugoslavia.  Then, I took Mirsad Fazlagić.  He was signed by Juventus for a fee that would have made him most expensive defender of all-time, but an injury kept him from going to Italy. He was on the team of the tournament for Euro 1968. He was also a local hero as he helped FK Sarajevo to win a historical league title in 1967. Mensur Mujdža made honorable mention.  He was a Bosniak born in Croatia, but chose to represent Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Zoran Vujovic who was born in Sarajevo was also considered.  He could play as a sweeper as well as on the left side.  His twin brother Zlatko is on this team. 
-- On leftback, I first took Sead Kolašinac.  He
 was on the Bundesliga Team of the Year twice. Then, I had to decide between Mirsad Baljić and Džemal Hadžiabdić. In three seasons with FC Sion, Baljić scored 40 goals as a leftback. In Swansea, Džemal Hadžiabdić was a cult hero playing alongside fellow Bosnian sweeper Ante Rakjovic.  Under manager John Toshack, he was an important member of the team that helped Swansea to a promotion to the First Division and finished 6th in the top flight. I took him basically because he was better known for his career in England.
-- Safet Sušić was one of the greatest players ever from Yugoslavia. Hasan Salihamidžić was best remembered for playing 9 seasons with Bayern Munich.  He was the first star player from here to emerge after the end of Yugoslavia.
-- Enver Hadžiabdić's name was mentioned frequently.  For most of his career, he played as a left midfielder, but for the Yugoslav national team, he also played as a left back.  He won't get into the team as a leftback, but the team lacked a good left-side attacker or winger.  So I dropped striker Asim "Hase" Ferhatović (Yugoslavia) for him.  He started his football career in 1948 with FK Sarajevo, for whom he made his first-team debut in 1952. Ferhatović remained with the club until his retirement in 1967, although he represented Fenerbahçe in the 1962–63 Turkish league season. He won a solitary cap for the Yugoslavia national team in 1961.
-- lijas Pašić, considered one of FK Željezničar Sarajevo's greatest players, was sometimes regarded as the first international footballer from FR Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Born in Herceg Novi, which is now part of Montenegro, his background raises questions about his eligibility.  However, due to uncertainty about his ethnicity, I decided not to include him on the team. 
-- Zvjezdan Misimović is one of the greatest players from this country after its independence.  But I left him off because I have Blaž Slišković, Ivica Osim and Safet Sušić ahead of him.  
-- In July 2011, Zinedine Zidane named Blaz Slišković as one of his idols while growing up and included him in his "All Time Best 11" of Marseille.  I trusted Zidane's judgement.  I selected him over striker Muhamed Mujić. Mujic, a versatile player capable of playing in various attacking positions. However, his career took a significant turn during the 1962 World Cup Finals when he committed a brutal foul on Soviet defender Eduard Dubinski. Regarded as one of the worst fouls in World Cup history, the Yugoslav federation banned Mujic for a year, effectively ending his career.
-- Ivicia Osim could successfully play in any place in the attack, and because of his extraordinary technique, great ball handling, effective dribbling and good shot, he was nicknamed "Strauss from Grbavica".
-- The team does not have enough central midfielders.  Miralem Pjanić and Mehmed Baždarević were very good central midfielders, but the team still needed more backups.  When I created the blog, I took Elvir Rahimić and seriously considered Edhem Šljivo.  In August 2021, I came across Refik Šabanadžović, a Bosniak player born in Montenegro. He was a member of the Red Star Belgrade team that won the European Cup. Šabanadžović represented Yugoslavia, which meant he was not cap-tied to either Montenegro or Bosnia and Herzegovina. Additionally, he had previously played for a Bosnia and Herzegovina selection in 1993. Based on this information, I made the decision to exclude Rahimic from the team.
Mehmed Baždarević 
-- Miralem Pjanić was an all-round midfielder.  He could play as an attack midfielder and a defensive midfielder. He was on the Serie A Team of the Year for four consecutive years.
-- Elvir Rahimić played with Slaven Živinice, NK Bosna, Interblock Ljubljana, SK Vorwärts Steyr and FC Anzhi Makhachkala before he moved to CSKA Moscow. His greatest accomplishment during his 12-year spell with the club has been winning the 2005 UEFA Cup.  He served a season there as a player-coach.  He played 40 times for Bosnia and Herzegovina between 2007 and 2013.
-- Zlatan Ibrahimovic's father was a Muslim Bosniak, but of course, he is not eligible because he played for Sweden.  Furthermore, his parents left Yugoslavia long before the breakup of Yugoslavia. 
-- Despite having only a single cap from Yugoslavia, Asim Ferhatović was considered among the greatest from Bosnia and Herzegovina.  He is a legend at FK Sarajevo.  Asim Ferhatović Hase Stadium, the site of the Opening Ceremonies of the 1984 Winter Olympics and the home of FK Sarajevo, is named in his honour. The Bosnia and Herzegovina national team often used the stadium for their international matches in the past. It is also the largest stadium in Bosnia and Herzegovina.  Although he may be regarded as a local legend in Sarajevo, he did not achieve the same level of international stardom as players like Vahid Halilhodžić, Edin Dzeko, and Zlatko Vujovic. While I value the significance of being a local hero, it was challenging to select him over the other mentioned players. Ultimately, his omission from the team was one of the most difficult decisions I had to make.
-- Zlatko and Zoran Vujovic were born in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but they were sometimes listed as Croats.  Due to the fact that they played under Yugoslavia, they should be eligible for this team based upon their birthplace. I put Zoran on honorable mention, but Zlatko made this team.  Zlatko is the second most capped players ever for Yugoslavia.
-- Meho Kodro's prime years were unfortunately hindered by the war, limiting his international exposure. While he is often remembered for his difficult season with Barcelona, I ultimately opted for Vedad Ibišević, who has made 70 appearances for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Ibišević's inclusion was influenced by his recognition in the Bundesliga Team of the Year for the 2008-2009 season. Although Sergej Barbarez was also considered, Ibišević's higher number of games played and goals scored for the national team played a significant role in my decision-making process.
Vedad Ibišević 
-- Sergej Barbarez, Dušan Bajević, Asim Ferhatović and Muhamed Mujić were the big names missing on this team.  
-- Dušan Bajević was the third all-time leading scorer in the Yugoslavia's league.  He also scored 29 goals with 37 caps.  He was on my AEK Athens All-Time team.  I struggled with the idea to select him over Vedad Ibišević.  Ibišević spent a long career in the Bundesliga.  Moreover, he was on Bundesliga Team of the Year as well as ESM Team of the Year in the 2008-2009 season.

Hasan Salihamidžić was known for his speed and skill.  So I am using him as a shuttler.  I do not know if Mehmed Baždarević can play on the left.