||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (April 2012)|
Kovač with Borussia Dortmund in 2007
|Date of birth||6 April 1974|
|Place of birth||West Berlin|
|Height||1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|1995–1996||1. FC Nürnberg||33||(1)|
|2013||Croatia U-21 (assistant)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
† Appearances (Goals).
Robert Kovač (Croatian pronunciation: [ˈrɔbɛrt ˈkɔʋaːtʃ]; born 6 April 1974) is the assistant coach of the Croatian national football team and a retired Croatian football defender. He was known for his ability with the ball and skill at dispossessing opponents.
Kovač started his career in lower league clubs Rapide Wedding and Hertha Zehlendorf before making his Bundesliga debut with 1. FC Nürnberg in 1995. Regularly featuring in the first–eleven, Kovač attracted much attention to himself and was signed at the end of the season by Leverkusen.
He spent the next five seasons in Leverkusen without any significant success, as the club did not win any trophy during that period, although they were three times Bundesliga runners–up.
After his contract expired he went to join reigning champions of 2000–01 season and UEFA Champions League title holders, Bayern Munich. In four seasons with Bayern he won two Bundesliga titles, two German Cup titles and the 2001 Intercontinental Cup.
On 15 July 2005, he signed for Juventus. He was one of the few first–team players that decided to stay in Juve following its demotion to Serie B. He made a total of 35 appearances and scored one goal before he moved back to Germany, this time for Borussia Dortmund.
On 1 August 2007, he signed for Borussia Dortmund, alongside another Croatian national team star, Mladen Petrić, who signed for the club two months earlier. Kovač had an unsuccessful comeback to the Bundesliga and was sold to Dinamo Zagreb at the winter transfer window of 2008–09 season.
On 29 January 2009, close to the January transfer window deadline, he signed 1 and a half year contract with Croatian champions Dinamo Zagreb. The club previously tried to sign him in the summer of 2007, but failed to meet his demands. Borussia Dortmund were compensated with €450,000. In his debut season Kovač made 12 appearances in the league and two more in Croatian Cup. He started the 2009–10 season with a foot injury and missed all of Dinamo's matches in July and August, but returned to action at the start of the September. Kovač finished the season with a total of 22 appearances for Dinamo in all competitions, before it was officially announced on 1 June 2010 that he retired from active football.
He represented Croatia in two World Cups, 2002 and 2006, and has also participated at two European Championships, 2004 and 2008. At World Cup 2006 he played well in defence, however after picking up a second yellow against Japan he missed the final group match against Australia through suspension. Without Kovač, Croatia struggled in defence with his replacement Tomas committing handball for Australia's first goal via penalty kick. Croatia eventually drew 2–2 with Australia but were eliminated from the tournament. With Croatia, Leverkusen, and Bayern, Kovač was teammates with his older brother Niko Kovač. He retired from the national team in the fall of 2009, having captained the team after his brother's retirement in 2008.
On 21 January 2013, Igor Štimac, head coach of Croatia national football team, announced that Kovač, alongiside his brother Niko, would take over as Croatia national under-21 football team head coach. He is the assistant to his brother, the coach of the Croatian national football team, at the World Cup in 2014.
- Bayern Munich
- Bundesliga: 2002–03, 2004–05
- DFB-Pokal: 2002–03, 2004–05
- DFB-Ligapokal: 2004
- Intercontinental Cup: 2001
- Dinamo Zagreb
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|1991–92||Hertha Zehlendorf||NOFV-Oberliga Mitte||27||1||27||1|
|Italy||League||Coppa Italia||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|Croatia||League||Croatian Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2008–09||Dinamo Zagreb||Prva HNL||12||0||2||0||0||0||14||0|
- "Player Profile - World Cup 2002". bbc.co.uk. Retrieved 23 July 2013.
- "Robert Kovač u Dinamu" (in Croatian). nk-dinamo.hr. 29 January 2009. Retrieved 8 September 2009.
- "Dinamo odustao od Roberta Kovača" (in Croatian). nk-dinamo.hr. 19 June 2007. Retrieved 8 September 2009.
- "Kovač: Opet sam spreman za igru" (in Croatian). nk-dinamo.hr. 1 September 2009. Retrieved 8 September 2009.
- Rupnik, Borna (1 June 2010). "Robert Kovač prekinuo karijeru" (in Croatian). Sportnet.hr. Retrieved 1 June 2010.
- Štrbinić, Lovro (21 January 2013). "Štimac objavio popis za Južnu Koreju, braća Kovač preuzimaju mladu reprezentaciju" (in Croatian). Sportnet.hr. Retrieved 21 January 2013.
- "Nude photos distract Croatia's Cup campaign". USA Today. 17 June 2014. Retrieved 24 June 2014.
- "Robert Kovač i Anica Martinović najsretniji bračni par" (in Croatian). index.hr. Retrieved 8 September 2009.
- "Career statistics". Nogometni Magazin. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- "Career statistics" (in Croatian). Dinamo Zagreb's official website.[dead link]
- "Robert Kovac". ESPN Soccernet. Retrieved 18 March 2012.
- "Robert Kovac" (in German). fussballdaten.de. Retrieved 13 February 2010.
- "Robert Kovač". National Football Teams. Retrieved 18 March 2012.