Sunday, 10 January 2010


Goran Ljubojevic's recent move to NK Zagreb after losing his way with Belgian side Racing Genk could be a signal for a number of his fellow countryman to return home after poor spells abroad. HRV Soccer lists numerous floundering Croat's who may be best served returning to the Balkans.

Bosnjak's career his plummetted rapidly since he left Dinamo Zagreb for Belgium in the 2006/07 season. Bosnjak was instrumental in Dinamo's revival in the Croatian league firing 22 goals in 2005/06 which earned him a call up for the Croatian national team for the 2006 World Cup. Bosnjak began the following season well with Genk scoring 6 goals in 14 games, before being injured. However his next two seasons were far from productive scoring just 3 times in 45 games. He was released last summer, but took little time finding a new club as a three year deal was agreed with Greek side Irakilis. After 10 matches, however the player is yet to score.
Current Status: Playing regularly with Irakilis.

Unlike Bosko Balaban and Ivan Bosnjak, Dario Smoje was unable to obtain a long term deal upon his released from AA Gent and could be targeting a return to Croatia in the summer. With the players contract due to expire in June, Smoje has struggled to command a first team jersey at his club Pananios, playing in just 1 game so far as a injury time substitute. It would not be the first time Smoje has found himself without regular action having spent the last two seasons at Gent with just 10 matches to his name. Smoje's return to Croatia with Dinamo Zagreb and neighbours NK Zagreb saw the player gain some success and a return home would seem the way forward for the 32 year old centre back.
Current Status: Free agent looking for a new club.

Stjepan Poljak would be hot property in Croatia once he decides to pass up the remainder of his three year contract with Eskirespor. From being a regular last season, Poljak has now found himself out of contention and at the exit door. Similarly to Krunoslav Lovrek, termination seems unlikely to happen quickly, but once the Turkish side extinguish the contract it is likely the 26 year old will back in HNL1 where he shined for Inter Zapresic and Slaven Belupo prior to his forey abroad.
Current Status: On Trial with Wislaw Krakow

It is hard to see what more can be gained from Zvonimir Deranja's time abroad after he was finally released from his contract after Excelsior Mouscron's financial demise cost them there place in Belgium's top flight. Deranja, now 30 was a prolific scorer with Hajduk Split and is also fondly remembered at French lower division side Libourne. Deranja has however failed to make the grade at an established top level club and spent two and half years with little football to speak of at Mouscron due to injury or falling out of favour with his coach. Deranja could experience strong end to his career in HNL1, but it is unlikely he will be able to attract a decent foriegn club based on his recent play.
Current Status: One of few of Mouscron's free agents hunting for new club.

Former Hajduk Split defender Hjorve Vukovic has spent six months out the game after being released by German Bundesliga 2 club Alemannia Aachen at the end of last season. Vukovic successfully regained unpaid monies from Hajduk last year, but has appeared little on the pitch and hopes of a foreign transfer appear to be waning. The defender had complained of injury problems and it isn't known if retirement may be in the offing, but the defender known for his hard tackling may be a positive gamble for a HNL1 side.
Current Status: Free agent since start of the season.