Sunday, 22 November 2009


Following Hajduk's unimpressive performance in front of goal in the first half of the Croatian Championship it is likely the Whites will hunt for a new striker to fill the boots of Nikola Kalinic. Kalinic left the Poljud in the summer for 6m Euro and thus far Ahmad Sharbini, Ante Vukusic or Paraiba have failed to delivered the same quantity of goals to fill the void.

Although Hajduk spent some of the Kalinic money on Anas and Ahmad Sharbini from Rijeka, they should still have a sizable amount for signings in the winter. Should Hajduk cash in on Senijad Ibricic this should also raise funds in case they move forward with plans to terminate players they regards surplus to requirements. Such players include Dario Jertec, Ivo Smoje and Ivan Rodic.

In the Croatian national championship there is few strikers that stand out who Hajduk may move for. For the past two years Sibenik's Ermin Zec and Slaven Belupo's Bojan Vrucina have stood out amongst the rest. Vrucina has just returned from injury, however Belupo appear to be preparing for life without the 24 year old who was targetted by FK Moscow in the summer. Zec will be high on both Dinamo Zagreb and Hajduk's wishlist after another impressive season this year. However the player is unlikely to transfer for less than 2m Euro's and Hajduk may struggle to prize the Bosnian international away from a rival for the Europa Liga spots.

Osijek's Ivan Milicevic, Slaven Belupo's Mateas Delic and Varteks Matija Smrekar would fit the category of strikers with potential. However having got their fingers burnt when signing Rodic, Hajduk may be wary of making any deals based on early promise. Hajduk may therefore look abroad for a striker playing well in another foriegn league or a player with experience that can aclimitize quickly to the Croatian league. Vicenza's Sasa Bjelanovic would fit into this category after forging a decent career in Italy with Chievo, Ascoli, Torino, Lecce and Genoa. Similarly Palermo's Igor Budan and Slovan Liberec's Andrej Keric have proven themselves abroad.

Following Dinamo's unsuccessful purchase of free agent Dmitrios Papadopoulos and Rijeka's far from inspiring recruitment of American journeyman Johann Smith, it would appear unlikely Hajduk would enter into the free transfer section of market. It is likely free agent Goran Ljubojevic or Excelsior Mouscron's Zvonimir Deranja make interesting purchases for Hajduk anymore having spent far too long away from the field.

In Autumn, Slovenian Under 21 international Etien Velikonja (pictured) was mentioned and this would have been a done deal if the player had not recieved an injury which is likely to put him out for the rest of the season. It is certain Vukusic, Duje Cop and loanee Paraiba will continue to be part of Hajduk's plans, however Rodic definitely seems on the way out and a question mark hangs over Ahmad Sharbini's future as the player may gain overtures from former club Rijeka in the winter if he stays out in the cold.