Heart of Hajduk Award
Heart of Hajduk (Croatian: Hajdučko srce) is an annual football award established in 1994 and officially awarded by the Hajduk Split supporters' association Torcida Split to the Hajduk player of the year, e.g. the team's best performing player during the season.
The inaugural winner of the award was midfielder Ante Miše, a key player in the squad which won the Croatian championship in the 1993–94 season. Two players have won the award twice - striker Nenad Pralija in 1995 and 1996, and goalkeeper Stipe Pletikosa in 2000 and 2002. As of 2012, only three foreign players received the award (Josip Skoko in 1998, Mirko Hrgović in 2007 and Senijad Ibričić in 2010), although they all hold Croatian citizenship. Hrgović was originally Croatian but had made a name for himself playing in Bosnia and Herzegovina, where he was given citizenship and was called up to play for the national side, while Skoko is a Croatian Australian.
In 2006 the title wasn't awarded because, according to supporters' judgment, none of the players deserved it following a string of bad results in both domestic competitions which saw Hajduk, widely considered a powerhouse in Croatian football, finishing fifth in the national championship and exiting the 2005–06 Croatian Cup in the semi-finals.
In 2009 the club had initially struggled to find their form, but improved later in the season and eventually finished second in the championship and runners-up in the 2008–09 Croatian Cup (after coming back from a 3–0 defeat to their biggest rivals Dinamo Zagreb in the first leg and then losing the final in a penalty shootout). The supporters' frustration with yet another trophiless season was further increased when Hajduk went through much turmoil related to the transformation of the debt-ridden club into a public limited company in the summer of 2009. In addition, the team experienced a series of humiliating results at the beginning of the 2009–10 season, and this all led to the cancellation of the award for the second time since its establishment. On 11 August 2011, the award was posthumously awarded to legendary Hajduk manager Tomislav Ivić who died in June 2011. In August 2012, Heart of Hajduk was awarded to the youth academy.
- Names in bold indicate multiple winners.
International caps correct as of 16 November 2014.
- Ilić, Igor (16 July 2009). "Hajduk Split to offer shares for sale". Reuters. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- Pavlić, Antonija (13 August 2009). "Torcida odustala od Hajdučkog srca" (in Croatian). Sportnet.hr. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- Pavković, Božo (11 August 2011). "Još jedno priznanje: Tomislavu Iviću dodijeljeno Hajdučko srce!". dalmacijanews.com (in Croatian). Retrieved 3 October 2011.
- Pavković, Božo (7 August 2012). "Hajdučko srce omladinskoj školi Hajduka!". dalmacijanews.com (in Croatian). Retrieved 7 August 2012.
- Duplančić, Blaž (12 July 2004). "Ovacije Računici" (in Croatian). Slobodna Dalmacija. Retrieved 17 January 2010.
- "Senijad Ibričić Hajdučko srce". Sportnet.hr (in Croatian). 4 August 2010. Retrieved 4 August 2010.
- Hajduk Split official website (Croatian)
- Torcida Split official website (Croatian)
- Heart of Hajduk at torcidakup.com (Croatian)