Darijo Srna

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Darijo Srna
Дарио Срна1.jpeg
Srna playing for Shakhtar Donetsk in 2010
Personal information
Full name Darijo Srna[1]
Date of birth (1982-05-01) 1 May 1982 (age 32)
Place of birth Metković, SR Croatia, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.78 m (5 ft 10 in)
Playing position Right full-back / midfielder
Club information
Current team
Shakhtar Donetsk
Number 33
Youth career
GOŠK Gabela[2]
Neretva Metković
Hajduk Split
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1999–2003 Hajduk Split 63 (4)
2003– Shakhtar Donetsk 266 (26)
National team
2002– Croatia 116 (21)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 12 June 2014.

† Appearances (Goals).

‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 19 June 2014

Darijo Srna (pronounced [dâːrijo sř̩na]; born 1 May 1982) is a Croatian professional footballer who plays for Shakhtar Donetsk as a captain and is also the captain of the Croatian national team. He can play all across the right wing and is known for his crossing and freekick ability.[3] He began his career at Hajduk Split, before moving to Shakhtar in 2003. He has won numerous trophies during his time at Shakhtar, including a UEFA Cup title in 2009, 7 Ukrainian Premier League titles, 5 Ukrainian Cup titles and 5 Ukrainian Super Cup titles. Srna made his international debut for Croatia in November 2002. In 2009, manager Slaven Bilić made him the captain of the national team.

He is the most capped player in the history of Croatian national team, and has represented the country on 2006 FIFA World Cup, UEFA Euro 2004, UEFA Euro 2008 and UEFA Euro 2012. He is considered to be one of the most legendary players in the history of Shakhtar Donetsk.[4][5] While in Shakhtar, Srna had offers from clubs like Chelsea F.C. and Bayern Munich, which he declined due to his loyalty to Shakhtar.[6]

Club career[edit]

Hajduk Split[edit]

Srna's talent was seen by many scouts in Croatia while he was young. He was later signed by Hajduk Split as his talent became desirable for the Croatian giants.[7]

At Hajduk, Srna won the 1999–2000 Croatian Cup, 2002–03 Croatian Cup and the 2000–01 Prva HNL. They played in the first round of 1999–2000 UEFA Cup, 2001–02 UEFA Cup, 2002–03 UEFA Cup, as well as the second round of the 2000–01 UEFA Champions League and the third round of the 2001–02 UEFA Champions League. He made 83 appearances for the club, including 63 league appearances, and scored 8 goals, 4 of which came in the league, before moving to Ukrainian club Shakhtar Donetsk.

Shakhtar Donetsk[edit]

In 2003, Srna was sold, along with Stipe Pletikosa, to Shakhtar Donetsk.[8] He is a common member and the captain in his club side, for whom he has made a large impact in the league. In his first season with the club he made 29 appearances, including 19 in the league, scoring 3 goals, all of which came in the Cup. He helped the club to win the Ukrainian Cup, his first honour with the club, and to a second place finish in the Premier League.[9]

In his second season, Shakhtar won the Super Cup and the Premier League.[10] He made 42 appearances for the club, 22 of which came in the league, and netted two goals, once in the league and once in the cup. Srna made his debut in main stage of UEFA Champions League on 14 September 2004 against Milan. His third season saw Shakhtar retain the Premier League title.[11] He made 21 league appearances, scoring twice. After the 2006 World Cup, Benfica were reported to be after the player's signature but nothing materialized, with what many considered a fallen or rejected sale. Since then, he had been linked with a number of other clubs, including S.S. Lazio, but a move never materialized.

The following season Shakhtar were trumped to the Premier League title by Dynamo Kyiv as they failed to achieve any silverware.[12] Darijo made 35 appearances for the club, 20 in the league, and scored four times, 3 of which came in the league. In the 2007–08 season Shakhtar picked up the Premier League trophy and were victorious in the Ukrainian Cup Final.[13] Darijo made 41 appearances, 28 of which came in the league.

2008–09 season[edit]

The 2008–09 season saw Shakhtar win the Super Cup and the UEFA Cup. On 15 July 2008 Shakhtar emerged victorious in the Super Cup Final against Dynamo Kyiv. At the end of extra time the teams were level at 1–1. In the penalty shoot-out Shakhtar converted all 5 penalties to win 5–3. Srna, who captained the side, scored one of the penalties.[14] On 3 August he scored the first goal in a 3–0 victory over Illichivets Mariupol.[15] On 13 August he scored the first goal in a 2–0 victory over Croatian side Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League.[16] On 18 October he scored a goal in Shakhtar's 4–2 win against Kryvbas.[17] On 2 March he scored the winning goal in Shakhtar's 2–1 league victory over Illichivets.[18] On 22 March he scored the only goal in a league win over Vorskla.[19] In the semi final of the UEFA Cup Shakhtar faced Dynamo Kyiv in an all-Ukrainian tie. After a 1–1 away draw in the first leg,[20] Shakhtar won 2–1 at the Donbass Arena for a 3–2 aggregate win to progress to the final.[21] Darijo played the full 90 minutes of both legs. On 20 May 2009, he captained Shakhtar in the 2–1 victory over Werder Bremen in the UEFA Cup Final.[22] Srna provided the assist for Jádson's winning goal seven minutes into extra time. He also picked up a yellow card. This was the last UEFA Cup before the change to the Europa League. Shakhtar finished the Premier League in 2nd position, 15 points behind champions Dynamo Kyiv.[23] Darijo made 46 appearances and scored 5 goals, with 25 appearances and 4 goals in the league.

Playing for Shakhtar in 2009

2009–10 season[edit]

In the 2009–10 season Shakhtar regained the Premier League.[24] On 28 August he played in Shakhtar's 1–0 extra time loss to Barcelona in the UEFA Super Cup, picking up a yellow card on 65 minutes.[25] He scored the third goal in a 4–1 away victory over Club Brugge in the Europa League.[26] He scored a goal and picked up a yellow card in a 2–0 Ukrainian Cup victory over Dynamo Kyiv on 28 October.[27] He netted his first league goal of the season in a 2–1 victory against Zorya Luhansk on 20 March.[28] On 3 April he scored the only goal in a league victory over Obolon.[29] Darijo played 39 matches, 26 in the league, and scored 4 goals, 2 of which came in the league.

2010–11 season[edit]

The 2010–11 season was extremely successful for Shakhtar as they won the treble (Premier League, Ukrainian Cup and the Super Cup).[30] He played in Shakhtar's 7–1 Super Cup victory over Tavriya Simferopol on 4 July.[31] On 15 September he netted the only goal, and picked up a yellow card, in a 1–0 Champions League win over Partizan Belgrade.[32] In the following match, against Tavriya, after going 1–0 down, Srna scored the equaliser in a 4–1 victory.[33] On 30 October he was sent off in added time against Dnipro as Shakhtar won 1–0.[34] On 1 April he scored the first goal in a 3–1 victory over Illichivets Mariupol.[35] On 7 May, against Metalurh Donetsk, he scored the second goal in a 2–0 win.[36] On 25 May he played in the 2–0 Ukrainian Cup Final victory over Dynamo Kyiv, picking up a yellow card.[37] Srna was named in the UEFA Champions League Team of the Year according to player rater (statistics) in the 2010–2011 season where Shakhtar lost in the quarter-final to Barcelona. Srna gave 5 assists in 5 games[38] He made 39 appearances, 27 of which were in the league, scoring 4 goals, 3 of which came in the league.

Srna playing for Shakhtar in 2011

2011–12 season[edit]

Shakhtar won the Premier League and the Ukrainian Cup in the 2011–12 season, Darijo's sixth league title with the club.[39] He scored a goal in first half injury time in a 2–0 away win over Metalurh Donetsk.[40] On 2 December he scored the first goal in a 5–0 league victory over Arsenal Kyiv at the Donbass Arena.[41] On 16 April, in the 27th gameweek of the season, Darijo netted the final goal in a 5–1 victory over Zorya Luhansk.[42] On 6 May he played in the Ukrainian Cup Final against Metalurh Donetsk, in which Shakhtar emerged victorious after an extra time winner from Oleksandr Kucher made it 2–1.[43] This marked Darijo's fourth Ukrainian Cup success with Shakhtar. He picked up a yellow card in the final match of the season, a 3–0 victory over Oleksandriya.[44] Shakhtar won the league by 4 points over Dynamo Kyiv. He scored 3 goals in 25 league matches and made a total of 34 appearances in the season.

2012–13 season[edit]

Darijo began the 2012–13 season with an assist for Luiz Adriano in the 6th minute of Shakhtar's 2–0 Super Cup victory over Metalurh Donetsk.[45] He assisted Ilsinho for the second goal in a 3–1 Premier League win against Hoverla.[46] He assisted Fernandinho for a 93rd minute winner against Kryvbas.[47] and added another for Marko Dević in a 4–0 victory against Volyn Lutsk.[48] On 19 August, Darijo assisted Willian for the third goal in a 5–1 win against Chornomorets Odesa[49] In the next match he provided Luiz Adriano with an assist in a 3–0 win over Karpaty Lviv.[50] On 2 September he assisted Oleksandr Kucher's second goal in a 3–1 victory against Dynamo Kyiv.[51] On 23 September Darijo scored a free kick in a 4–1 victory over Dynamo Kyiv in the last 32 of the Ukrainian Cup.[52] On 28 September he scored the winning goal in a 2–1 victory against Dnipro Dnipropetrovsk.[53] He picked up the Man of the Match award for his contribution to win over Dnipro.[54] On 19 October he assisted Ilsinho for a goal in a 2–1 victory against Illichivets.[55]

On 13 February 2013, Srna netted with a sweetly-struck free kick in the 31st minute in the first leg of the Champions League Round of 16 tie with Borussia Dortmund, the game ended in a 2-2 draw.[56] At the end of the 2012/13 season in Ukraine he became assists leader with 12 assists.[57][58]

2013–14 season[edit]

In mid-season Srna helped Shakhtar win the 2014 United Supercup, a tournament between the top-two placed clubs from Russia and Ukraine, becoming the assists leader[59] and joint top scorer of the tournament.[60] By the end of the season, the club won the Ukraine Premier League and the 2014 Ukrainian Super Cup.

2014-15 season[edit]

In the first game of the season, Srna set a new record of games played for Shakhtar Donetsk in the Ukraine Premier League.[61]

International career[edit]

Euro 2004[edit]

Srna made his full international debut for the Croatian national team in a friendly match against Romania in November 2002. He went on to score his first international goal on his competitive debut for Croatia in their Euro 2004 qualifier against Belgium in March 2003, netting the opening goal in Croatia's 4–0 win. He made a total of six appearances in Croatia's qualifying campaign for the Euro 2004, including both play-off matches against Slovenia.

At the Euro 2004 finals, he appeared as a substitute in Croatia's group matches against Switzerland and England before they were knocked out of the tournament in the first round.[8]

2006 World Cup[edit]

After the Euro 2004, Srna went on to become one of the key players in Croatia's 2006 World Cup qualifying campaign, scoring five goals in nine appearances during the campaign and being the team's top goalscorer in the competition. During the 2006 World Cup qualifying, he scored both goals in Croatia's two 1–0 wins over Sweden, including a long-range free kick in the away fixture in Gothenburg. He also netted both goals in Croatia's 2–2 home draw against Bulgaria as well as one goal in their 3–1 away win at Iceland.

Srna then starred in all three games of Croatia's 2006 World Cup campaign. He was highly praised and remembered for his spectacular 30-yard free kick which put Croatia ahead against Australia in the infamous "Graham Poll three-yellow card" blunder match that ended 2–2 and saw Croatia therefore exit from the group stage.

In September 2006, Srna was temporarily dropped from the Croatian squad for a Euro 2008 qualifying match with Russia because of a late night partying spree in a local disco along with teammates Boško Balaban and Ivica Olić.[62]

Srna in action for Croatia in 2013

Euro 2008[edit]

Srna was considered the hero of the match when he came on as a substitute against Macedonia in a Euro 2008 qualifying match and scored shortly after from a free kick which was shot into the right corner of the goal.[63] In the 88th minute, he provided a cross which found teammate Eduardo and allowed him to score and snatch a late win for Croatia. He also scored Croatia's equaliser in their hard fought away victory against Israel, which eventually ended 4–3 in Croatia's favor. Srna went on to miss a penalty against Estonia, however his overall contribution to teamwork attack compensated for this mistake which Croatia quickly capitalised on to win 2–0.

Since helping his country qualify for Euro 2008 with a strong qualifying campaign, Srna was unsurprisingly named in their 23-man squad for the current tournament. On 12 June, Srna scored the opening goal in the 24th minute of Croatia's 2–1 victory over Germany in their second game of Group B. He was the only player to score for Croatia in their unsuccessful penalty shootout in the quarter finals against Turkey. At the conclusion of the match, Srna was seen struggling to hold back an emotional breakdown because of Croatia's strong efforts but eventual defeat.

Euro 2012[edit]

After the 2008 Euro, Srna succeeded Niko Kovač as national team captain.[64][65]

Srna started in all 3 games of the 2012 tournament as the captain, where Croatia finished third behind Spain and Italy, failing to qualify to the next stage. Italy and Spain went on to become the finalists of the tournament.

On 6 February 2013, Srna won his 100th cap in a friendly match against South Korea at Craven Cottage in London. During the match, Srna scored his 20th international goal.[66]

2014 World Cup[edit]

Croatia qualified for the 2014 World Cup, and Srna was named the team captain on his second official international tournament (first one being Euro 2012).[67] Croatia finished third in the group behind Brazil and Mexico and failed to qualify to the next stage.

Personal life[edit]

Srna was born in Metković[68] to Bosniak father Uzeir and Croatian mother Milka. His father, a World War II orphan and a former footballer for FK Sarajevo, supported his fledgling football career despite discrimination during the Yugoslav wars and widespread corruption among football coaches.[69] Before leaving Croatia to join for Shakhtar, he gave his parents a brand new Mercedes.[70] He has a tattoo of a deer playing football on his leg, as 'Srna' in Croatian means 'deer'.[71]

Srna has a half-brother, Renato, a coach at Neretva, from their father's first marriage.[71] His other brother Igor has Down syndrome. As a result, Srna dedicates all his goals to him,[71] and even revealed a shirt under his jersey saying "Igor, svi smo uz tebe" ("Igor, we are all here for you") after scoring a goal against Macedonia. He also has a tattoo of "Igor" along his heart.[64]

While at Shaktar, Srna frequently buys match tickets for orphans and often finances their travel to the stadium at his own expense.[64][72][73]

Srna is married to longtime girlfriend Mirela Forić, whom he met through mutual friend footballer Boško Balaban.[74][75] Their daughter Kasja was born in July 2010.[76]

Career statistics[edit]

Club[edit]

As of 6 March 2014
Club Season League Cup Europe Super Cup Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Hajduk Split 1999–00 1 0 - - - - - - 1 0
2000–01 10 0 3 0 - - - - 13 0
2001–02 25 1 2 1 5 1 - - 32 3
2002–03 27 3 6 2 4 0 - - 37 5
Total 63 4 11 3 9 1 - - 83 8
Shakhtar 2003–04 19 0 5 3 5 0 - - 29 3
2004–05 22 1 7 1 11 0 1 0 41 2
2005–06 21 2 1 0 10 0 1 0 33 2
2006–07 20 3 5 0 9 1 1 0 35 4
2007–08 28 0 3 0 10 0 - - 41 0
2008–09 25 4 3 0 17 1 1 0 46 5
2009–10 26 2 2 1 11 1 - - 39 4
2010–11 27 3 2 0 9 1 1 0 39 4
2011–12 25 3 3 0 5 0 1 0 34 3
2012–13 26 2 5 1 8 1 1 0 40 4
2013–14 27 6 1 0 8 0 1 0 37 6
Total 266 26 37 6 103 5 8 0 414 37
Career total 329 30 48 9 112 6 8 0 497 45

International[edit]

As of 19 June 2014
Croatia national team
Year Apps Goals
2002 1 0
2003 11 1
2004 11 4
2005 9 3
2006 9 3
2007 11 4
2008 10 2
2009 9 1
2010 8 1
2011 10 0
2012 10 0
2013 11 2
2014 6 0
Total 116 21

International goals[edit]

# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
1. 29 March 2003 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Belgium 1–0 4–0 UEFA Euro 2004 qualifying
2. 31 March 2004 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Turkey 2–1 2–2 Friendly
3. 8 September 2004 Ullevi Stadium, Gothenburg, Sweden  Sweden 0–1 0–1 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification
4. 9 October 2004 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Bulgaria 1–0 2–2 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification
5. 9 October 2004 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Bulgaria 2–0 2–2 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification
6. 9 February 2005 Teddy Stadium, Jerusalem, Israel  Israel 1–2 3–3 Friendly
7. 3 September 2005 Laugardalsvöllur, Reykjavík, Iceland  Iceland 1–3 1–3 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification
8. 8 October 2005 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Sweden 1–0 1–0 2006 FIFA World Cup qualification
9. 1 March 2006 St. Jakob-Park, Basel, Switzerland  Argentina 2–2 2–3 Friendly
10. 22 June 2006 Gottlieb-Daimler-Stadion, Stuttgart, Germany  Australia 1–0 2–2 2006 FIFA World Cup
11. 15 November 2006 Ramat Gan Stadium, Ramat Gan, Israel  Israel 1–1 3–4 UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying
12. 24 March 2007 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Macedonia 1–1 2–1 UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying
13. 22 August 2007 Koševo, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina  Bosnia and Herzegovina 0–2 3–5 Friendly
14. 22 August 2007 Koševo, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina  Bosnia and Herzegovina 2–4 3–5 Friendly
15. 12 September 2007 Estadi Comunal, Andorra la Vella, Andorra  Andorra 0–1 0–6 UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying
16. 12 June 2008 Hypo-Arena, Klagenfurt, Austria  Germany 1–0 2–1 UEFA Euro 2008
17. 20 August 2008 Ljudski vrt, Maribor, Slovenia  Slovenia 2–2 2–3 Friendly
18. 14 November 2009 Stadion HNK Cibalia, Vinkovci, Croatia  Liechtenstein 2–0 5–0 Friendly
19. 3 September 2010 Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia  Latvia 0–3 0–3 UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying
20. 6 February 2013 Craven Cottage, London, England  South Korea 0–2 0–4 Friendly
21. 19 November 2013 Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia  Iceland 2–0 2–0 2014 FIFA World Cup qualification play-off

Honours[edit]

Club[edit]

Srna lifting the Ukrainian Cup in 2011

Croatia Hajduk Split

Ukraine Shakhtar Donetsk

Individual[edit]

References[edit]

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External links[edit]