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Dejan Savićević
File:1997-YUG Savicevic.jpg
Personal information
Date of birth September 15, 1966 (1966-09-15) (age 43)
Place of birth    Titograd, SFR Yugoslavia
Playing position Attacking midfielder / Winger
Youth career
OFK Titograd
Senior career1
Years Club App (Gls)*
Budućnost Titograd
Red Star Belgrade
A.C. Milan
Red Star Belgrade
Rapid Wien
131 (35)
072 (23)
097 (27)
003 0(0)
044 (25)   
National team
1986–1999 SFRY/FRY 056 (19)[1]
Teams managed
2001–2003 FR Yugoslavia / Serbia & Montenegro

1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only.
* Appearances (Goals)

Dejan Savićević (Serbian Cyrillic: Дејан Савићевић) (born September 15, 1966 in Titograd, Montenegro, SFR Yugoslavia), is a Montenegrin of Romani heritage[2] former football player and the current president of the Montenegro FA [3]. His close control and vision have won him many admirers. Since 2004, he is the president of the Football Association of Montenegro (FSCG).


Early years

Born to Orthodox parents Vladimir Savićević and Vojislava Đurović, young Dejan had an immediate affinity for football and quickly developed his gift for the game

Club career

Savićević began playing structured football in the youth teams of OFK Titograd when he was 15 years old. He played for Budućnost of the Yugoslav First League and earned his first cap for the national side in 1986 against Turkey.


Red Star Belgrade

Following a string of fine performances in Titograd, all of the top teams in Yugoslavia were after 21-year-old Savićević in the summer of 1988. He ended up choosing the league champions Red Star Belgrade, and promptly went to serve the mandatory army stint that kept him out of action for the entire 1988-89 league season, although the state authorities did allow him to turn up for important club European matches and national team games. Another player to join the club the same summer was Darko Pančev, 22-year-old natural striker with great goalscoring pedigree from Vardar Skopje, who also went away to the army right after signing.

1988-89 season

Savićević, a serving soldier at the time, made his competitive debut for the club in the now famous European Champions' Cup second round clash versus AC Milan played over three matches in late October and early November 1988. He played a prominent part in the first leg at San Siro as Red Star played to a hard fought 1-1 draw with Dragan Stojković scoring the valuable away goal. The return leg in Belgrade was even more eventful as Savićević had his team up 1-0 with an excellent strike, but German referee Dieter Pauly stopped and voided the match because of thick fog that engulfed the city. The second leg replay was played the very next day, resulting again in 1-1 scoreline, taking the match to penalties where the Italians came up on top 2-4 as Savićević and Mitar Mrkela failed to convert their spot-kicks.

1989-90 season

Savićević's first season in earnest with Red Star was 1989-90. During the summer 1989 off-season, head coach Branko Stanković was let go and Dragoslav Šekularac was brought in as replacement. The change suited Savićević just fine as he and another key player Dragan Stojković never saw eye to eye with Stanković.

Savićević helped Red Star win three consecutive national titles - in 1989/90, 1990/91 and 1991/92, two national Cups in 1990 and 1992 as well as a European Cup and a Intercontinental Cup, both in 1991.

In 1991, following Red Star's European success, Savićević came joint second in the voting for the European Footballer of the Year (Ballon d'Or).

AC Milan

Savićević's tremendous close control and vision convinced Serie A champions A.C. Milan to secure his services for the reported DM30 million[4] (~ £9.4 million) ahead of the 1992/93 season as part of the £34 million worth of transfer fees Silvio Berlusconi injected into the team that summer. Also arriving to an already star-laden squad on the same occasion were the world-class players Jean-Pierre Papin, Zvonimir Boban, Gianluigi Lentini (world record signing at the time for £13 million), and Stefano Eranio.

1992-93 season

Dejan was thus handed the opportunity to demonstrate his abilities to an even wider audience with his league debut taking place on September 13, 1992, two days before his 26th birthday.

However, his first season for the Rossoneri under head coach Fabio Capello turned out to be a rather modest affair that saw him feature in only 10 league matches, contributing four goals to Milan's successful title defense. All-star Milan squad already had a creative midfield presence in influential Marco van Basten who, when healthy, was the preferred option by Capello throughout most of the season. Even the 30-year-old Ruud Gullit who was increasingly becoming a peripheral figure in Milan under Capello was still ahead of Savićević in the pecking order most of the time. Due to UEFA enforcing the three foreigners rule at the time, Savićević often found himself omitted from the squad on matchdays since in addition to Gullit and van Basten, the Milan roster also featured high quality foreigners Frank Rijkaard, Papin, and Boban. Additionally, Capello often preferred workhorse midfielders such as Demetrio Albertini and Stefano Eranio for his tactical setup over the high-priced creative imports.[5]

Savićević and Capello quickly developed an uneasy relationship with the former frustrated at being regularly dropped from the first team, and the latter unwilling to change the winning formula that had the team on an undefeated run in the league dating back to May 1991 (the streak would eventually end after 58 matches in March 1993). In November 1992, when asked how he copes with leaving out world class players such as Savićević or Papin, Capello responded:

It's very difficult for all these great players. At most clubs, there's a squad of 15 or 16. Here we have 24. They have to change their mentality just like I've had to change mine. This is a different way of doing the job. It means they have to be prepared to work hard even when they aren't in the team. Work, work, work. That's the only way. It's not easy for them.[5]

To cap off the season, Savićević was not included in the team Capello took to Munich to face Olympique de Marseille in the 1993 UEFA Champions League Final.

1993-94 season

The summer 1993 off-season brought some player personnel changes that would end up benefiting Savićević. His main two attacking midfield competitors Gullit and van Basten were gone, the former transferring to Sampdoria frustrated at seeing his role at Milan greatly reduced and the latter taking a year off to heal his ankle injury that would eventually turn out to be career-ending. Also, Frank Rijkaard transferred to Ajax, which freed up even more room. New foreign summer arrivals Brian Laudrup and Florin Răducioiu found little playing in Capello's structure, all of which made the competition for three foreign spots easier for the remaining foreigners Savićević, Boban, and Papin during the first part of the season.

From the beginning of the new league campaign, Savićević started getting increased first team opportunities and responded with fine performances. Although still not a regular in true sense and often played out of position, Savićević put in a significant contribution to a Serie A and Champions League double, despite not scoring any goals in his 20 league appearances.

The playing setup Capello employed throughout this season was an extremely defensive 4-4-2 that resulted in the entire team scoring only 36 goals in 34 league matches while letting in only 15.[6] Further solidifying the defensive focus was the mid-season arrival of Marcel Desailly who became a regular right away. Still, for his inspirational and creative play, Savićević was hailed as Il Genio (The Genius) by Silvio Berlusconi, the then president of Milan with whom Dejan developed a great relationship and rapport. Basically, it was Berlusconi's personal support that kept Savićević from leaving the club at various low points of his relationship with Capello.[7]

Still, the season ended on a high note for Savićević. His performance in the 1994 UEFA Champions League Final on May 18 would turn out to be his greatest moment in football and arguably one of the finest individual displays seen in the competition.[8] He created the opening goal for Daniele Massaro and then scored a spectacular 35 yard half volley for 3-0 to put the game beyond Johan Cruijff-coached FC Barcelona's reach.

1994-95 season

Despite the team’s mid-table form in 1995, Savićević lead Milan to their third successive European Cup final that, for him, culminated in a spectacular semi-final versus Paris SG where he scored twice at the San Siro. Despite his brilliant performance against PSG and his statistical importance to the team in 1995, he did not play in the 1995 Champions League Final due to 'injury', even though Savićević insisted he was fit. In the final, Milan created few opportunities and ultimately lost to Ajax 1-0. In his total career at the San Siro, Milan won 7 trophies, including 3 scudetti (Serie A championships) - 1992-93, 1993-94, 1995-96, 1 European Cup - 1993-94 and 1 European Super Cup, but he was criticized in the Italian media for not always trying against smaller teams and his performances regularly blew hot and cold.


Spanning 13 years, Savićević's national team career is divided in two distinct parts: first six years under head coach Ivica Osim when the country was called SFR Yugoslavia featuring six republics and last five years under head coach Slobodan Santrač representing FR Yugoslavia, which comprised Serbia and Montenegro.

His years under Osim were marked by the tumultuous relationship the two men shared,[9] with conservative Osim often distrustful of Savićević's talents, preferring players he considered to be more mature and reliable for the places upfront such as Zlatko Vujović, Mehmed Baždarević, Dragan Stojković, and even veteran Safet Sušić.

Under Santrač, Savićević was an automatic regular, but due to the UN embargo imposed on FR Yugoslavia and resulting sporting sanctions, he missed two and a half years of national team football altogether. Also, since Yugoslavia only started playing competitive matches in mid 1996, it meant that Savićević was prevented from playing any competitive national team matches from the time he was 25 until almost turning 30.

Euro 88 qualifying

Savićević made his national team debut, while still at Budućnost, on October 29, 1986 in a Euro 88 qualifier versus Turkey in Split. Head coach Ivica Osim, who himself was only in his fourth match coaching the national team, put the talented 20-year-old in as the second half substitute for Haris Škoro with the game virtually decided as Yugoslavia was already 3-0 up through Zlatko Vujović's first half hat-trick. Debutante Savićević wasted no time in making a mark as he scored the team's fourth goal for a 4-0 final scoreline.[10] Two weeks later Osim didn't call up Savićević for the important qualifier away at Wembley versus England that Yugoslavia lost 0-2.

The youngster would wait for a whole year for his second cap. In mid October 1987, Euro 1988 qualifying was still on with Yugoslavia playing Northern Ireland at Grbavica in Sarajevo, and he again came on as the second half sub, this time for Fadil Vokrri. Yugoslavia won the game easily 3-0, and with England destroying Turkey 8-0 at home on the same day, the stage was set for a crucial Yugoslavia vs. England clash that would decide who goes to Germany. If England was to win or draw it would automatically qualify and if Yugoslavia was to win, it would then also have to later win away at Turkey in order to qualify and overtake England. The match was played on November 11, 1987 in front of a packed house of 70,000 at Marakana in Belgrade and Savićević again didn't get a chance to play as England embarrassed Yugoslavia 1-4, thus qualifying for the Euro.

A month later, Osim gave Savićević his first national team start in a meaningless remaining qualifier versus Turkey in İzmir.

Over the coming period between two qualifying cycles, Yugoslavia played six friendlies from March to September 1988 and Savićević featured in only first two of them (full 90 minutes versus Wales and Italy in late March 1988) as his uneasy relationship with Osim, who was not fired by the Yugoslav FA following the failure to qualify for Euro 88, continued.

World Cup 1990 qualifying

The 1990 FIFA World Cup qualifying started in October 1988 with Savićević, who in the meantime completed the big time summer move to Red Star Belgrade and right away went to serve the mandatory army service, not being called up for the first match away at Scotland.

Then, a month later, perhaps surprisingly knowing the coach's conservative nature, Osim brought on the in-form Savićević, who was coming off a great performance in Red Star's tie versus AC Milan, as a 69th minute sub for Bora Cvetković right after France went ahead 1-2 a minute earlier on a goal by Franck Sauzée. The substitution paid off in a big way as French players had no answer for Savićević's fresh legs and creativity in midfield. Dejan first participated in a move that ended with Sušić scoring the equalizer and then with two players guarding him provided a perfect cross from the right for Red Star teammate Stojković to score the winning goal in 83rd minute as Yugoslavia recorded a big comeback 3-2 win at the JNA Stadium in Belgrade.

Savićević's great performance against France put him in Osim's good books, for the time being at least, as he got a chance to start the next qualifier at home versus Cyprus in December. Dejan, still officially in his army service, returned the favour, scoring a hat-trick as Yugoslavia won 4-0 at Marakana. The following qualifier in late April 1989 was a crucial one away at France and Osim decided not to play Savićević, choosing instead to continue with his older regulars upfront such as Zlatko Vujović, Sušić, and Baždarević as Yugoslavia eked out a hard fought scoreless draw at the Parc des Princes.

Savićević would also not play in the next qualifier away at Norway, returning only as a second half sub for Dragan Jakovljević in September 1989 at Maksimir in Zagreb versus Scotland. With the 3-1 win over Scotland, Yugoslavia overtook the Scots at the top of the table. So, with two matches remaining, Yugoslavia were now leading the pack with 10 points (4 wins and 2 draws) followed by Scotland with 9, and France and Norway with 5. In such circumstances, conservative Osim certainly wasn't about to tinker with the team, which meant that Savićević only got his chance in friendlies. The match point for Yugoslavia took place at Koševo in Sarajevo versus Norway in October 1989, and not surprisingly Savićević again didn't get a single minute of play. The team won 1-0, and combinend with the fact that Scotland got beate by France 0-3 in Paris, Yugoslavia clinched the top spot in the group, qualifying for the World Cup in Italy. The last qualifier was a meaningless affair away at Cyprus (the match was actually played in Athens since Cyprus were penalized for the riots during their match versus Scotland), and Savićević got a chance to start along with a slew of other young and up-and-coming players from the domestic league that Osim normally shied away from using in competitive matches such as Darko Pančev, Robert Prosinečki, Branko Brnović, and Slobodan Marović.

World Cup 1990

Heading into the World Cup, Savićević's chances of playing a larger role in the national team looked to have received a bit of a boost as Mehmed Baždarević, one of his competitors for an attacking midfield spot, was suspended by FIFA for spitting at the Turkish referee Yousouf Namoglou during the crucial qualifier versus Norway. However, Savićević didn't get a chance in the first two friendlies in March at Poland and in May at home versus Spain, leading to conclusions that he would again be looking from the outside in. But then in early June, only 7 days before the opening World Cup match, he got to play the full 90 minutes at the "dress rehearsal" at Maksimir in Zagreb versus Holland where he put in an inspired performance.[11] The game itself, however, took a back seat to the controversy caused by nationalist Croatian fans who booed the Yugoslav national anthem and thoroughly insulted the players.

At San Siro on June 10, 1990, the same starting eleven that faced Holland in the final friendly also started versus Germany, including Savićević. However, the team was picked apart by the speed and strength of the German players as Lothar Matthäus and Jürgen Klinsmann had the Elf 2-0 up before halftime. Shortly after the break Davor Jozić pulled one back for Yugoslavia, which was a signal for head coach Osim to make changes in hopes of sparking a comeback. One minute later he took off Savićević who was mostly invisible, having a game to forget much like most of the Yugoslav team, and put Dragoljub Brnović on as part of a double substitution that also saw Prosinečki replace Sušić. The move didn't do much, though, as Matthäus rampaged through Yugoslav defense before unleashing a powerful shot for another score. Fourth German goal came as the final insult as goalkeeper Ivković made a mess of Brehme's easy shot.

Getting nothing from the Germany match pretty much meant that the next group match versus Colombia was a must win. Osim made three changes in the starting lineup, and one of them was Savićević who got benched in favour of Brnović. Yugoslavia made tough work of the plucky Colombians, but got a 1-0 victory in the end. More or less the same lineup faced United Arab Emirates in the final group match, which meant that Savićević was again surplus to Osim's requirements.

Coaching career

Savićević's two-year spell as head coach of the national side was a polar opposite of his distinguished playing career.

Immediately after retiring from playing in May 2001, he was named as head coach of the FR Yugoslavia / Serbia-Montenegro national squad, in succession to the short, tempestuous, and hugely disappointing 3-month tenure of Milovan Đorić. Despite Savićević's complete lack of any relevant coaching experience, and the side's already faint chances of progressing from the World Cup 2002 qualifying tournament, the announcement of his appointment was generally well received by the public. His appointment came as part of the general changing of the guard in the Yugoslav FA with Dragan Stojković (Savićević's good personal friend) taking over as the FA president.

2002 World Cup qualifying

At first, Savićević was part of a 3-man coaching commission with the experienced Vujadin Boškov and Ivan Ćurković by his side. At the time of their arrival to the bench, Yugoslavia was sitting in fourth place of the qualifying group with only 5 points from 4 matches, behind Russia (13 points), Switzerland (8), and Slovenia (7). However, Yugoslavia had a game in hand and with a win in Moscow had a chance to overtake Slovenia and join the Swiss tied on points in the second spot. On the other hand, a loss to Russia in Moscow would probably mean losing any hope of finishing in the top two.

Savićević thus faced a make it or break it prospect right on his coaching debut. Despite the fact that national team was officially headed by the three-man commission, Savićević was the only one of the trio present on the sidelines during matches and was the only one one available to the press. The team fielded on June 2, 2001 at Luzhniki Stadium was substantially the same as Đorić's, both in names called up and playing formation. Other than two debutants - goalkeeper Radovan Radaković and defensive midfielder Boban Dmitrović - the jist of the starting squad was still made up of old guard: players like Predrag Mijatović, Siniša Mihajlović, and Miroslav Đukić, all of whom were well over thirty, as well as longtime defensive mainstays such as Zoran Mirković and Goran Đorović. With a defensive approach and mostly unimaginative play with very little created through midfield, Yugoslavia never looked capable of winning. The match ended 1-1 as Russians went ahead following Radaković's poor reaction and Yugoslavia tied some fifteen minutes later on Mijatović's scrambled goal that he managed to put away after Savo Milošević's header hit the post.[12] The press reaction was not overly negative as the tied score still had the team on course for a second place finish.[13] After next two qualifiers, home and away against Faroe Islands, in which Yugoslavia recorded easy wins, came the decision time, facing Switzerland in a must win situation away on Saturday, September 1st. Cheered on by the large expatriate crowd in Basel, Yugoslavia ended up winning 1-2 in what was easily the team's best showing under Savićević up to that point thus setting up the deciding match at home versus Slovenia four days later. Playing on tough surface as the Partizan Stadium pitch was soaked from the heavy rain that was pouring whole day and throughout the match, Yugoslavia went behind early and only managed to tie the score by the end, which wasn't enough for the second place. Despite dominating proceedings through veteran Mijatović who was the offensive focal point, the second goal proved elusive.[14] The chance still existed in theory if Faroe Islands managed to win or draw at Slovenia in the final match, however such unlikely scenario didn't happen. Afer Slovenia game Savićević bemoaned the bad luck, citing playing in the rain on a soaked surface without injured regulars Mirković and Vladimir Jugović as the main reasnos why his team failed to beat Slovenia.[15][16]

Savićević was handed the coaching duties all by himself in late December 2001. At the time, he claimed to have taken the solo job on temporary basis only, since Dušan Bajević rejected it.[17] Savićević also intimated the new permanent coach would take over by the summer of 2002. However, that did not happen and he remained in post until June 2003.

Euro 2004 qualifying

Throughout his reign, he failed to achieve a settled team, and his personal disputes with Mateja Kežman precipitated the striker to temporarily retire from international football. Savićević finally resigned in June 2003 after a humiliating 1-2 defeat to Azerbaijan in a Euro 2004 qualifier, which was also the team's fifth defeat in a row. His overall managerial record was 4 wins, 11 losses, and 2 draws, in addition to 4 wins, 2 losses, and 2 ties as part of the commission.

Administrative / Political career

In the summer of 2004, 37-year-old Savićević became the president of the Football Association of Montenegro (FSCG), which was at the time under the umbrella of Football Association of Serbia and Montenegro (FSSCG).

Feud with Milorad Kosanović

On November 17, 2004, Serbia-Montenegro under-21 national team lost 4-0 against the Belgian u-21 team in Lokeren as part of the qualification round for the 2006 European under-21 Championship.[18] In the wake of the disappointing result, Savićević publicly came out against u-21 head coach Milorad Kosanović by saying he should resign over the loss as well as over the fact that he didn't call up any players from the teams based in Montenegro for the Belgium match. In support of his claims Savićević said that "Miroslav Vujadinović from Budućnost Podgorica is the best young goalkeeper in Europe and wasn't even called up for the under 21 squad" and went on to add that such state of affairs constitutes "discrimination of Montenegro".[19]

Over the coming months Savićević exerted continuous pressure within the FA ranks for Kosanović to be fired,[19] even going so far as to semi-officially boycott the under-21 team by refusing to allow Montenegrin players to turn up for Kosanović's callups.[20] Savićević's bullish behaviour strained the internal relations within the Serbia-Montenegro FA organization to a maximum. In late 2004, in an effort to ease the tense standoff, Serbia-Montenegro FA president Dragan Stojković (Savićević's close personal friend and longtime teammate during playing days) reportedly asked Kosanović to resign, which he vehemently refused.[21] As a result of the episode each member of the FA's expert council delegated from Serbia resigned in protest - Dušan Savić, Jovica Škoro, Milovan Đorić, and Miroslav Tanjga - with Savić stating he wants no part in this "dirty political game" while criticizing Savićević and Montenegrin FA for interfering in under-21 head coach's job.[21]

As for Kosanović, after initially managing to resist,[22] he eventually resigned some 4 months later on March 8, 2005.[23]

Montenegrin independence referendum

Savićević then publicly came out in favour of Montenegrin independence, becoming an important part of the pro-independence campaign organized by Movement for Independent Montenegro. He attended, and spoke at, rallies alongside Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Đukanović. Savićević's face also appeared on billboards urging the citizens of Montenegro to vote 'Yes' at the referendum.

In spring 2006 while interviewed for Montenegrin local station NTV Montena, Savićević admitted to playing "in a couple of fixed matches" while with Budućnost in the old Yugoslav First League during the 1980s. He also claimed on the same occasion that most of the matches in that season's (2005-06) Serbia-Montenegro Superliga are fixed, but declined to elaborate or provide evidence by saying "I don't want to be killed because of football like Branko Bulatović".[24] Naturally, such controversial claims caused a lot of reaction. Serbia-Montenegro FA (FSSCG) announced formal investigation, arranging a hearing for Savićević to provide details and evidence of his claims.[25] Others, like FK Partizan vice-president Ratomir Babić, accused Savićević of scoring political points for his mentors in the separatist-oriented Montenegrin regime by intentionally spreading explosive false rumours in order to bring the union's league into disrepute.[25]

Feud with Rajo Božović

Simultaneously, all throughout 2006, Savićević butted heads with his own second-in-command, FSCG vice-president Radojica "Rajo" Božović who is also the president of FK Zeta.

Their feud started in mid March 2006 after Zeta-Budućnost league fixture in the second part of 2005-06 Serbia-Montenegro Superliga season. Initially, the row culminated on May 12, 2006 during the FSSCG meeting in Belgrade where Savićević and Božović showed up as representatives of regional Montenegrin FA (FSCG). At the said meeting, Savićević abruptly left the premises following a vicious shouting match with Božović.[26] Since Montenegro became independent some 10 days later on May 21, 2006, FSCG became the top footballing body of the newly created country, responsible for the national team and organizing a football league. Savićević's presidential term continued as well.

In September 2006, a vicious public rift between two men got reignited following the cancellation of the scheduled league fixture between FK Zeta and Budućnost on September 4, 2006 due to threats of violence and incidents outside the ground between the clubs' managements. Božović accused Savićević of multiple infractions: favouring his old club Budućnost, working against Zeta, and tampering with the referee selection process. Savićević responded by calling on the Montenegrin government and ruling political party DPS to get involved.[27] In mid-October 2006, FSCG held a meeting during which the majority of delegates supported Savićević, deciding on the same occasion to relieve Božović of his duties as vice-president.[28]

Feud with Dan newspaper

Also in this period Savićević got into the row Podgorica's Dan daily newspaper, an issue that's still ongoing some three years later. Irritated by their criticism of his work as FA president, his pro-independence political engagement during 2006 referendum campaign, as well as his ties with the regime of Milo Đukanović, Savićević verbally abused, shouted at, and generally menaced Dan journalists during FA press conferences.[27] He especially went after Dan sports editor Veselin Drljević with whom he has a long standing feud.

In March 2007, when Montenegro national team started playing matches, Savićević raised even more controversy when in an unprecedented move, using his powers as FA president, he banned Dan journalists from attending national team matches. Dan editor-in-chief Mladen Milutinović complained about the situation to various international bodies including the International Sports Press Association.[29]

On July 10, 2009, Savićević got re-elected as Montenegrin FA president, and will remain at the post for another 4 years.[30]

Private life

Savićević was married to Valentina Brajović (divorced in 2000) with whom he has two children.

Following a Saturday night out in Trebinje on September 18, 2004, Savićević was involved in an incident with Podgorica police at around 2:30am Sunday morning. After driving his Audi TT at a high rate of speed through Podgorica streets and running a red light, he was stopped by a police patrol. According to the police, when stopped, Savićević insulted the policeman with a series of obscenities and among other things said "I'm God, laws don't apply to me".[31][32]

Approximately a year later, Savićević was severely injured in a traffic accident that occurred October 1, 2005 on a Podgorica street. He fractured both arms after crashing his motorcycle into the rear end of a moving vehicle, becoming airborne and landing hard on the pavement. He's had three surgeries in Hannover, Germany during mid-to-late October 2005.[33][34] The recovery period was about six months long.

1999 Heckler Controversy

Savićević is the protagonist of a widely circulated internet clip (viral video) from a 1999 Dutch documentary about the 1987 World Youth Championship winning SFR Yugoslavia under-20 team. Most of the footage was shot in October 1999 just as the FR Yugoslavia and Croatia national teams were to play a deciding Euro 2000 qualifier in Zagreb. Conceptualized as a "what might've been" homage of sorts, the documentary interviews different members of the 1987 youth side, now split between the senior national teams of two countries. Savićević was not a member of that 1987 team, but the Dutch filmmakers still decided to include him in the film.

This particular clip shows Savićević being interviewed on the day before the match, in front of the hotel in Zagreb where Yugoslav team was staying. He is wearing Yugoslavia training gear and as such is easily spotted and recognized by people strolling by. As Dejan is answering a question, man on the street is heard shouting off-camera: "You're a piece of shit!".

Savićević looks up, realizes the comment was directed at him and answers the heckler by berating him with an obscenity laced tirade. After insulting him sufficiently, Savićević returns his attention to the interview and continues answering the question right where he left off without missing a beat.[35]


  1. ^ Alpuin, Luis Fernando Passo; Mamrud, Roberto; Miladinovich, Misha (20 February 2009). "Yugoslavia (Serbia (and Montenegro)) - Record International Players". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 12 March 2009.  
  2. ^ Romani footballers
  3. ^ UEFA Magazine - Montenegro's new dawn by Aleksandar Bošković
  4. ^ Poslednji dribling genija i boga, Vreme, June 1, 2006
  5. ^ a b The night of glorious triumph that made Capello, The Guardian, December 13, 2007
  6. ^ How Capello won his nine league titles, The Guardian, December 14, 2007
  7. ^ The most beautiful game: Majestic Milan put flair to the fore and turn the European Cup final into a parade of their riches: Richard Williams in Athens sees a display rich in eloquence from the European champions, The Independent, May 22, 1994
  8. ^ Barcelona mesmerised by magic of Milan: Italians champions ignore their status as underdogs to reach Olympian heights in the humiliation of Spaniards , The Independent, May 19, 1994
  9. ^ TEMA „BLICA“: Kako bi izgledala reprezentacija nekadašnje YU škole fudbala: Bivša SFRJ bi u Africi igrala polufinale!, Blic, November 21, 2009
  10. ^ Yugoslavia NT matches 1980s
  11. ^ Yugoslavia-Holland 0:2, June 1990
  12. ^ Russia-Yugoslavia 1:1
  13. ^ Iz baraža na Mondijal, Blic, June 4, 2001
  14. ^ Reprezentacija Jugoslavije sinoć igrala nerešeno sa Slovenijom (1:1) i praktično se oprostila od Mondijala - Daleki Istok, Glas javnosti, September 5, 2001
  15. ^ Savićević: Ne moram da ostanem selektor, Blic, September 7, 2001
  16. ^ Dejan Savićević verovao da će plavi postići i drugi gol - Zaslužili smo baraž, Glas javnosti, September 5, 2001
  17. ^ Savićević selektor na (ne)određeno vreme, Glas javnosti, December 28, 2001
  18. ^ Ubedljiv poraz mladih u Lokerenu, B92, November 17, 2004
  19. ^ a b Dejo za smenu, Srbi ne daju, Glas javnosti, December 24, 2004
  20. ^ Okuka i zvanično trener "mladih", B92, March 15, 2005
  21. ^ a b Raskol u dva fudbalska saveza?, B92, December 26, 2004
  22. ^ Kosanović: Još sam selektor, B92, February 9, 2005
  23. ^ Kosanović: Odlazim!, Večernje novosti, March 8, 2005
  24. ^ Neću da me ubiju zbog fudbala!?, Večernje novosti, March 29, 2006
  25. ^ a b Dejo pod istragom!, Večernje novosti, March 31, 2006
  26. ^ Sukob Savićevića i Božovića, Glas javnosti, May 12, 2006
  27. ^ a b Savićević: Neka država reši problem, B92, September 5, 2006
  28. ^ FSCG: Skupština za Savićevića, B92, October 18, 2006
  29. ^ Montenegrin newspaper Dan appeals to AIPS to help resolve football accreditation issue, September 8, 2008
  30. ^ Novi mandat za Savićevića, B92, July 10, 2009
  31. ^ Savićević: "Ja sam Bog..." !, B92, September 22, 2004
  32. ^ Savićević: Policiji sam trn u oku, Pobjeda September 23, 2004
  33. ^ Dejan Savićević opet operisan!, Večernje novosti, October 11, 2005
  34. ^ Dejo opet pod nož!, Večernje novosti, October 17, 2005
  35. ^ Savićević swears in Zagreb, October 1999

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