Željko Brkić

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Željko Brkić
Желько Бркич.jpg
Brkić in 2014
Personal information
Full name Željko Brkić
Date of birth (1986-07-09) 9 July 1986 (age 30)
Place of birth Novi Sad, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.97 m (6 ft 6 in)
Playing position Goalkeeper
Club information
Current team
Number 23
Youth career
Indeks Novi Sad
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
2004–2011 Vojvodina 96 (0)
2005–2007 Proleter Novi Sad (loan) 31 (0)
2011–2016 Udinese 43 (0)
2011–2012 Siena (loan) 18 (0)
2015 Cagliari (loan) 21 (0)
2015–2016 Carpi (loan) 4 (0)
2016– PAOK 2 (0)
National team
2007–2009 Serbia U21 12 (0)
2010– Serbia 11 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 7 July 2016.
‡ National team caps and goals correct as of 7 June 2015

Željko Brkić (Serbian Cyrillic: Жељко Бркић, born 9 July 1986) is a Serbian football goalkeeper who plays for PAOK in the Greek Superleague.

Club career[edit]

Early career in Serbia[edit]

Brkić, playing in the goalkeeper position, started his career as a professional began at the club Indeks Novi Sad and Vojvodina, before playing professionally at Vojvodina. Brkić loaned him to Proleter Novi Sad in 2005, where he stayed for the club about two years. At Proleter Novi Sad, Brkić made thirty-one appearance. After his return from loan, Brkić made his debut for the club, in a 1–0 win over Napredak Kruševac on 2 September 2007. Since then, Brkić soon became a first-choice goalkeeper and soon became the club's captain. At the club, Brkić made the total of 117 appearance.


In the summer of 2011, Brkić left Serbia to join Italian side Udinese.[1] Because Udinese ran out of non-EU registration quota for international signing (which Udinese had to buy one from other club) as well as the performance of Slovenian internationals Samir Handanović, Brkić was signed by Serie A club Siena[2][3] in definitive deal[4] from Vojvodina, which he would transfer back to Udine in a later time. (which just cost Siena for €20,000 as other fee.[4]).

On 11 September 2011, Brkić made his debut in a 0–0 draw against Catania, keeping his first clean sheet on his debut in Serie A.[5] In October, following impressive performances with Siena, Brkić was linked with a move to English side Tottenham Hotspur. In response of a transfer speculation, however, Brkić told Serbian daily Sport that he is aware of the transfer rumour, but insists he is focusing at Siena.[6] Brkić also says he is no rush of leaving the club and insists the move is not affecting his form.[7] After a 2–0 loss against Milan on 17 December 2011 in which Brkić get a yellow card resulting a penalty,[8] Brkić soon had an operation that kept him out for many months after fracturing his left fibula.[9] A year on, Brkić spoke about his injury and find it difficult to come back to recover.[10] In January 2012, Brkić was transferred back to Udinese for free[4] and returned to Siena on a temporary deal also for free.[4] During his injury, Siena used Gianluca Pegolo as first choice. Brkić played his first game since his injury on 22 April. In a 1–1 draw against Bologna on 25 April 2012, Brkić scored an own goal from a Alessandro Diamanti free kick, denying Siena a win.



Željko Brkić

After a season with Siena, Brkić became the club's first-choice goalkeeper following Samir Handanović's departure to Inter Milan.[11] Having established himself in the first team, Brkić made his debut for the club in the UEFA Champions League qualification round against Portuguese side Braga. Unfortunately, Udinese was eliminated in the Champions League and demoted to the UEFA Europa League after losing in the penalty shoot-out in the second leg, just three days before he made his league debut in a 2–1 loss against Fiorentina. However, the next game was even went worse for Brkić when he gave away the penalty in early minutes and received a red card in a 4–1 loss against regaining champion Juventus. After the match, former referee Daniele Tombolini says Brkić's sending-off was a mistake because Sebastian Giovinco, the opposition player in the match, did not have possession of the ball, though he maintained his views that the foul was a penalty.[12] Brkić then miss one match against Siena[13] and made his return when Udinese won 2–1 against Milan the next game. On 4 October 2012, Brkić was in goal when Udinese beat Liverpool 3–2, making good save from Luis Suárez twice and a header from Jonjo Shelvey.[14] Unfortunately, Udinese would then be eliminated from the Europa League, following a strings of losses. In mid-January, Brkić soon suffered an injury after fracturing the second finger of his right hand and went to surgery that kept him out at least a month.[15] A month later, Brkić made his return, playing in friendly match against Gemonese on 26 February 2013. After the match, Brkić says he was prepared to make a comeback.[16] Brkić made his return on 3 March 2013 against Pescara, where the club won 1-0.[17] After the match, Brkić returned as a first-choice goalkeeper for the rest of the 2012–13 season.


In the 2013–14 season, Brkić was ruled out for the start of the season after injuring his shoulder while exercising in the gym, which he is out for four months.[18] After three months out of action, Brkić made his return in a 2–1 win over Sassuolo. Brkić's performance with Udinese is describe as a "saved at least three goal-bound efforts while blocking several strong shots and commanded his area giving sustenance and substance to his whole defence". This earned him Serie A Team of Week 10.[19] Juventus invited schoolchildren to watch their match against Udinese in December in place of banned Ultras, but they shouted abuse at Brkić after each goal kick, and Juventus were fined €5,000.[20]


In 7 July 2016, Brkić signed a three-year deal with Superleague Greece club PAOK. Brkić, who had already agreed terms with PAOK's president/technical director Ľuboš Micheľ, passed his medical at the Thessaloniki-based club and then signed his new contract, leaving Italy after five consecutive seasons. Brkić, along with the experienced Greek internationals Panagiotis Glykos and Markos Vellidis, is expected to be part of a very strong triplete in goalkeeper's position for PAOK ahead of 2016-17 season.[21][22]

International career[edit]

Brkić started participating in the national team, playing for Serbia U-21 and was even in the U21 squad for the 2009 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship despite being age twenty-two. In the European U21 Football Championship, Brkić played three match, all in group-stage. Brkić also managed to keep two clean sheet in the tournament.

On 3 March 2010, Brkić made his senior debut for the national team, coming on for Vladimir Stojković as a substitute in the 81st minutes after Stojković suffered an injury during a match, in a 3–0 win over Algeria.[23] In the 2010 FIFA World Cup, Brkić was named for the national team squad ahead of the World Cup.[24] Unfortunately, Brkić was dropped from the squad after manager Radomir Antić trimmed the squad from 24 to 23.[25] Years on, Brkić was the national first choice goalkeeper, beating competition from Vladimir Stojković in the World Cup qualifier.

Career statistics[edit]

As of end of 2015–16 season
Club performance League Cup Continental Total
Season Club League Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
Serbia League Serbian Cup Europe Total
2006–07 Vojvodina SuperLiga 4 0 0 0 0 0 4 0
2007–08 14 0 0 0 1 0 15 0
2008–09 27 0 2 0 3 0 32 0
2009–10 23 0 4 0 2 0 29 0
2010–11 28 0 6 0 0 0 34 0
Italy League Coppa Italia Europe Total
2011–12 Siena (loan) Serie A 18 0 2 0 0 0 20 0
2012–13 Udinese 31 0 0 0 6 0 37 0
2013–14 12 0 1 0 0 0 13 0
2014–15 Cagliari 21 0 0 0 0 0 21 0
2015–16 Carpi Serie A 4 0 3 0 0 0 7 0
League Cup Continental Total
Total Serbia 96 0 12 0 6 0 114 0
Italy 86 0 6 0 6 0 98 0
Career total 182 0 18 0 12 0 212 0


  1. ^ "Udinese, new confirmations of Brkic" [Udinese, nuove conferme su Brkic] (in Italian). Tutto Mercato Web. 6 June 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  2. ^ "Brkic in prestito dall'Udinese" (in Italian). AC Siena. 15 July 2011. Retrieved 16 March 2014. 
  3. ^ "Udinese, nuove conferme su Brkic" [ESCLUSIVA TMW – Siena, quasi fatta per Brkic] (in Italian). Tutto Mercato Web. 8 July 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  4. ^ a b c d AC Siena SpA bilancio (financial report and accounts) on 30 June 2012 (Italian)
  5. ^ "Brkic and Handanovic drive the "survivors" between the poles" [Brkic e Handanovic guidano i "sopravvissuti" fra i pali] (in Italian). Gazzetta. 13 September 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  6. ^ "Brkic flattered by Spurs link". Sky Sports. 7 October 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  7. ^ "Brkic reveals Spurs interest". Sky Sports. 19 December 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  8. ^ "Siena slam Milan penalty". Football Italia. 18 December 2011. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  9. ^ "Siena, Brkic to return" [Siena, Brkic verso il rientro] (in Italian). Tutto Mercato Web. 13 March 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  10. ^ "Udinese, Brkic: "I found it hard to go back"" [Udinese, Brkic: "Ho fatto fatica a tornare"] (in Italian). Tutto Mercato Web. 11 December 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  11. ^ "All change again at Udinese". Football Italia. 22 August 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  12. ^ "'Brkic red card was a mistake,' says ex referee Tombolini". Goal.com. 4 September 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  13. ^ "Five Serie A suspensions". Football Italia. 3 September 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  14. ^ "Liverpool 2–3 Udinese". BBC Sport. 4 October 2012. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  15. ^ "Udinese lose injured Brkic". Football Italia. 15 January 2013. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  16. ^ "Udinese, Brkic: "I'm ready to return"" [Udinese, Brkic: "Sono pronto al rientro"] (in Italian). Tutto Mercato Web. 27 February 2013. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  17. ^ "Pescara 0-1 Udinese: Di Natale Milestone Secures Zebrette Victory". Forza Italian Football. 3 March 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  18. ^ "Brkic ruled out for four months". Football Italia. 4 July 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  19. ^ "Serie A Team of Week 10". Football Italia. 1 November 2013. Retrieved 27 December 2013. 
  20. ^ Homewood, Brian (3 December 2013). "Juventus fined after rowdy children insult keeper". Reuters. Archived from the original on 22 May 2014. 
  21. ^ Μπρκιτς η έκτη μεταγραφή;Retrieved 7 July 2016
  22. ^ Οριστικά στον ΠΑΟΚ ο Μπρκιτς;Retrieved 7 July 2016
  23. ^ "Disljenkovic canceled Antic!?" [Dišljenković otkazao Antiću!?] (in Serbian). Sportske.net. 21 February 2010. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  24. ^ "World Cup 2010: Serbia cut Chelsea pair from squad". BBC Sport. 21 May 2010. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 
  25. ^ "World Cup 2010: Serbia drop fourth keeper to trim squad". BBC Sport. 1 June 2010. Retrieved 11 April 2013. 

External links[edit]