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Mehmed Baždarević

Mehmed BaždarevićDescription : * Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.Mehmed Baždarević (born 28 September 1960) is a Bosnian football manager and former player. Baždarević is the current manager of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national football team.Baždarević played for Bosnian side Željezničar Sarajevo and French outfit Sochaux-Montbéliard, among others. Known as Meša in the former Yugoslavia and colloquially known as Mécha in France, he is considered to be one of the best football player... Page:m

Mehmed Baždarević
20150331 2201 AUT BIH 2601.jpg
Baždarević with Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2015
Personal information
Full nameMehmed Baždarević
Date of birth(1960-09-28) 28 September 1960 (age 55)
Place of birthVišegrad, FPR Yugoslavia
Height1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing positionMidfielder
Club information
Current team
Bosnia and Herzegovina (manager)
Senior career*
YearsTeamApps(Gls)
1978–1987Željezničar229(22)
1987–1996Sochaux308(20)
1996–1997Nîmes32(0)
1998Étoile Carouge6(0)
Total575(42)
National team
1983–1992Yugoslavia54(4)
1996Bosnia and Herzegovina2(0)
Teams managed
1998–2003Sochaux (assistant)
2003–2005Istres
2005–2006Étoile du Sahel
2006–2007Al-Wakrah
2007–2010Grenoble
2011–2012Sochaux
2012–2013Al-Wakrah
2014–Bosnia and Herzegovina
Honours
Men's Football
Representing  Yugoslavia
Olympic Games
Bronze medal – third place1984 Los AngelesTeam

* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.


Mehmed Baždarević (born 28 September 1960) is a Bosnian football manager and former player. Baždarević is the current manager of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national football team.

Baždarević played for Bosnian side Željezničar Sarajevo and French outfit Sochaux-Montbéliard, among others. Known as Meša in the former Yugoslavia and colloquially known as Mécha in France, he is considered to be one of the best football players from Bosnia and Herzegovina ever.

Internationally he earned caps with Yugoslavia and took part playing at UEFA Euro 1984. He also played for Bosnia and Herzegovina after the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1992. He was the first captain of the Bosnian national side. He retired as a player in 1998 and moved into management.

Club career

Željezničar Sarajevo

Born in Višegrad, SFR Yugoslavia his professional playing career started in Željezničar Sarajevo in 1979. He was part of a team that managed to reach the UEFA Cup semifinals in 1985 under the guidance of Ivica Osim.

In 1980/1981 season, Željezničar reached Yugoslav cup final (Marshal Tito Cup final), with 20-year-old Mehmed Baždarević scoring two goals in a 2–3 loss to another Bosnian side Velež Mostar. The venue of the final was Stadion Crvene Zvezde in Belgrade played in front of 40,000 football fans.

He played more than 300 games for the club.

Sochaux

In 1987, he moved to French side Sochaux-Montbéliard. He stayed at the club until 1996. He collected more than 350 appearances for FC Sochaux in various competitions.

After that, he played for Nîmes Olympique (1996–97 season) and Swiss side Étoile Carouge (1997–98 season) before he announced his retirement in summer of 1998.

As player, Baždarević was targeted by many clubs including Barcelona, Arsenal and Borussia Dortmund.

International career

He also played for the national teams of two countries. He played for the Yugoslavia junior, Olympic and U-21 teams. He captained the U-20 national team that took part in the FIFA World Youth Championship in 1979. His debut for Yugoslav national team came in 1983. He collected 54 caps and scored 4 goals for the national team. He represented Yugoslavia national team at UEFA Euro 1984 playing in all the teams games at the tournament.

Baždarević began to play for the Bosnian national team in 1992 after Bosnia-Herzegovina gained independence. However, the team was not recognised by FIFA until 1995 in part due to the Yugoslav wars.

Managerial career

From July 1, 1998 to June 30, 2003 Baždarević worked as Sochaux assistant coach to Jean Fernandez and Guy Lacombe before taking over as manager of reserve sides at the club.

Istres

His first job as a head coach was at Istres. He guided the club to its biggest success - entering the French Ligue 1 in 2004, which secured him a best Ligue 2 manager of the year award.

Étoile

On 16 July 2005, Baždarević took over Tunisian side Étoile Sportive du Sahel. He reached the 2005 African Champions League final with the club. Baždarević was fired by Etoile on 12 April 2006, after a 1–0 home defeat to USM Monastir in their final league cost them the Tunisian League.

Baždarević was also employed as a head coach of Qatari Al-Wakra in 2006.

Grenoble

Since December 2007, he has been managing French side Grenoble Foot 38 where he arrived on recommendation of his mentor Ivica Osim who knew Grenoble's Japanese owners from working with them in J-League with JEF United. He rejected offers from top league clubs Le Mans and Nice to take over Grenoble. At the end of 2007–08, led by Bazdarevic, Grenoble gained promotion to the French top league, for the first time in their history. Under Baždarević, Grenoble reached French Cup semi-finals during 2008–09 season.

In September 2010, he left Grenoble due to financial reasons.

Sochaux

On 10 June 2011, Baždarević was named as manager of the Sochaux for which he played professional football. He was sacked on 6 March 2012, due to poor results (after 8 months in charge).

Since then he has had interest to manage clubs from Serbia and Belgium.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

On 13 December 2014, Baždarević was named coach of the Bosnia and Herzegovina national football team beating Milovan Rajevac for the position. Among other candidates were Vahid Halilhodžić, Igor Štimac, and Felix Magath. He replaced Safet Sušić, who was sacked by N/FSBiH due to a run of poor results in UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying having only taken 2 points in four matches. Bosnia and Herzegovina improved considerably under Bazdarevic and reached the playoffs stage for Euro 2016 where they were unfortunately eliminated by Republic of Ireland with a 3-1 aggregate score. In the aftermath, Miroslav Blažević blamed Mehmed Baždarević for Bosnia's elimination against Ireland.

On 9 November 2015, Bosnian FA extended the contract with Baždarević till after 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifier campaign.

Career statistics

International goals

Scores and results table. Yugoslavia's goal tally first:
#DateVenueOpponentScoreResultCompetition
114/12/1983Cardif, Wales Wales1–11–1UEFA Euro 1984 qualifying
220/10/1984Leipzig, Germany East Germany1–12–31986 FIFA World Cup qualification
314/09/1988Oviedo, Spain Spain1–11–2Friendly
414/11/1990Kopenhagen, Denmark Denmark0–10–2UEFA Euro 1992 qualifying

Manager

As of match played 6 September 2016. Some club statistics accurate as at 18 April 2013.
TeamNatFromToRecord
GWDLWin %
Sochaux (assistant)FranceJul 1, 1998Jun 30, 2003----
IstresFranceJul 1, 2003Jan 9, 20056221192233.87
Étoile du SahelTunisiaJul 16, 2005Apr 12, 200625157360
Al-WakrahQatarJul 1, 2006Jun 30, 200727713725.93
GrenobleFranceJul 1, 2007Sep 5, 20106725222037.31
SochauxFranceJun 10, 2011Mar 6, 201226491315.38
Al-WakrahQatarMay 23, 2012Jun 3, 201322751031.82
Bosnia and HerzegovinaBosnia and HerzegovinaDec 13, 2014Present1593360

Honours

International

Yugoslavia
  • 1984 Summer Olympics Bronze Medal

Individual

  • Ligue 2 Manager of the year: 2004
  • Bosnian Manager of the year: 2008

Mehmed Baždarević in popular culture

  • Baždarević international career is remembered for his spitting on the Turkish referee Yusuf Namoğlu during a qualifying match for the 1990 World Cup, against Norway played in Sarajevo. Baždarević was banned from the 1990 World Cup for the incident. Yugoslavia reached the Quarter-finals at the tournament.
  • Baždarević again missed a major tournament, this time the entire team was excluded from taking part in Euro 1992, having already qualified, because of UN sanctions due to Yugoslav wars. Denmark instead took their place and won the 1992 championship. On 14 November 1990, Baždarević scored a goal against the Danes in Copenhagen during the qualifications for the tournament.
  • During 1990's a Yugoslav sketch comedy TV show, Top lista nadrealista, made Baždarević a popular figure, due to the spitting incident on the Turkish referee.

Personal life

His wife Marina Baždarević was born in Belgrade, Serbia. He met his wife in 1979 on an airplane from Japan going back to Belgrade. Nine months later, they met again on another flight from Tunisia to Belgrade and after the second meeting they started dating His daughter, Téa Baždarević, is a journalist in France.

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