Milan Jovanović (footballer, born 1981)
Jovanović at Liverpool in 2010
|Full name||Milan Jovanović|
|Date of birth||18 April 1981|
|Place of birth||Bajina Bašta, SFR Yugoslavia|
|Height||1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|Playing position||Forward, Winger|
|Kosmos Bajina Bašta|
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only.
He began his career with FK Vojvodina and had brief spells at Shakhtar Donetsk and Lokomotiv Moscow before joining Standard Liège, where he was named Belgian Pro League player of the year in 2008 and Belgian Golden Shoe the following year. In 2010–11, he spent the season at Liverpool, returning to Belgium afterwards to spend the rest of his career at Anderlecht.
Jovanović earned 44 caps for the Serbian national team from his debut in 2007, and scored 11 international goals. Coach Radomir Antić created a wing-tandem with Jovanović and Miloš Krasić which is remembered as the best wing-partnership in the modern history of the Serbian national team. He represented Serbia at the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Son of Stamenko and Gordana, Jovanović (known locally as Lane) grew up in Bajina Bašta before moving to Valjevo, Novi Sad, and Belgrade in pursuit of a football career. He played in the youth teams of FK Kosmos Bajina Bašta and FK Budućnost Valjevo.
At Standard Liège, Jovanović quickly became a fan favourite, scoring 14 goals in his first season and earning the nickname "the snake" for his fast movement. Another two highly successful seasons in Belgium followed, with Jovanović turning down a move to Spanish giants Real Madrid in 2009 because he was worried he would not play regularly. Jovanović was hugely successful in Belgium and on 13 January 2010, was named as the Jupiler League's Player of the Year. However, the year after, Standard Liege ended the season at the 8th position, with Jovanović managing to score 10 goals in his last season in Belgium.
Jovanović joined English Premier League club Liverpool on 8 July 2010 on a free transfer. There had been speculation he would renege on the pre-contract agreement that he had signed after Liverpool manager Rafael Benítez resigned in June 2010: Benítez was reported to be anxious to bring the player to his new club Internazionale, but Jovanović confirmed his intention to honour his contract, and was given squad number 14.
On 29 July 2010, Jovanović made his competitive debut for Roy Hodgson's Liverpool, starting in a 2–0 away win against FK Rabotnički in the Europa League and made his home debut in the second leg. He went on to make his Premier League debut on 15 August 2010, against Arsenal in a 1–1 draw at Anfield. He scored his first goal for Liverpool in the League Cup tie against League Two side Northampton Town at Anfield on 22 September. After Kenny Dalglish took over as Liverpool manager in early 2011, Jovanović was rarely called upon, occasionally not even being named to the bench.
In August 2011, Jovanović moved to Belgian club R.S.C. Anderlecht, signing a two-year contract. On 17 March 2013 Jovanović scored a stunning goal against KAA Gent, where he chested the ball forward before kicking the airborne ball from over 20 meters out into the upper right corner of the goal. In his time at Anderlecht, he scored 23 goals in 69 league games. In the summer of 2013, he did not renew his contract with Anderlecht. He returned to Serbia that summer and trained in Novi Sad, prompting journalists to speculate a Bosman move to FK Vojvodina. However, he did not sign a contract with Vojvodina and remained off the radar of professional football since his departure from Anderlecht.
He made his debut for the Serbian national team against Finland on 2 June 2007. Serbia won the match 2–0, with Jovanović scoring Serbia's second goal. Jovanović was Serbia's top scorer in 2010 FIFA World Cup qualifying. On 21 May 2010, he was included by coach Radomir Antić in Serbia's initial 23-man squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup. On 18 June 2010, Jovanović scored his first goal in the FIFA World Cup, against Germany in a Group D match, which Serbia won 1–0. In the same match, Jovanović allegedly had a humorous exchange with Marko Marin, who was born in Bosnia and Herzegovina; Marin admitted that when he substituted Thomas Müller in the 70th minute, Jovanović told him jokingly to "run slower" so as to let Serbia hold on to the 1–0 lead.
In popular culture
In October 2011, Jovanović was mentioned in the Australian soap opera Neighbours, where he was described by Andrew Robinson as "one of the greatest soccer players in the world." Several commentators in the English-speaking football community expressed surprise at this statement.
He won FHM's 'Dong of the Year award' in 1999 making him the first non British/American person to do so. The Serbian Prime Minister congratulated Jovanovic on his achievements, and called it "a proud day for Serbia".
|Serbia national team|
|Jovanović – goals for Serbia|
|1.||2 June 2007||Helsinki Olympic Stadium, Helsinki, Finland||Finland||0–2||0–2||UEFA Euro 2008 qual.|
|2.||15 October 2008||Ernst-Happel-Stadion, Vienna, Austria||Austria||0–2||1–3||2010 World Cup qual.|
|3.||19 November 2008||Stadion FK Partizan, Beograd, Serbia||Bulgaria||1–0||6–1||Friendly|
|4.||19 November 2008||Stadion FK Partizan, Beograd, Serbia||Bulgaria||2–1||6–1||Friendly|
|5.||10 February 2009||GSP Stadium, Nicosia, Cyprus||Cyprus||0–1||0–2||Friendly|
|6.||28 March 2009||Stadionul Farul, Constanţa, Romania||Romania||0–1||2–3||2010 World Cup qual.|
|7.||10 June 2009||Tórsvøllur, Tórshavn, Faroe Islands||Faroe Islands||0–1||0–2||2010 World Cup qual.|
|8.||10 October 2009||Stadion FK Crvena zvezda, Beograd, Serbia||Romania||4–0||5–0||2010 World Cup qual.|
|9.||10 October 2009||Stadion FK Crvena zvezda, Beograd, Serbia||Romania||5–0||5–0||2010 World Cup qual.|
|10.||18 June 2010||Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth, South Africa||Germany||1–0||1–0||2010 FIFA World Cup|
|11.||6 September 2011||Stadion FK Partizan, Belgrade, Serbia||Faroe Islands||1–0||3–1||Euro 2012 qual.|
- Shakhtar Donetsk
- Lokomotiv Moscow
- Standard Liège
- R.S.C. Anderlecht
- "Premier League Player Profile". Premier League. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
- Lanetova majka: To, sine moj zlatni; Kurir, 20 June 2010
- Milan Jovanović at Reprezentacija.rs
- "Serbia's Milan Jovanovic to join Liverpool in summer". BBC News. 10 February 2010. Retrieved 11 July 2010.
- Walsh, Kristian (8 July 2010). "Liverpool announce signing of Milan Jovanovic". The Daily Telegraph (London: Telegraph Media Group). Retrieved 8 July 2010.
- Edwards, John (1 July 2010). "Roy Hodgson targets Gilberto Silva, Brede Hangeland, Rafael van der Vaart and Danny Murphy with Liverpool spending spree". Daily Mail (London).
- Vesty, Marc (29 July 2010). "Rabotnicki Skopje 0–2 Liverpool". BBC Sport. Retrieved 29 July 2010.
- "Cole shines as Reds cruise". ESPNsoccernet (ESPN). 5 August 2010. Retrieved 5 August 2010.
- "Liverpool 1–1 Arsenal". ESPNsoccernet (ESPN). 15 August 2010. Retrieved 17 August 2010.
- "Liverpool – Northampton". BBC Sport. 22 September 2010. Retrieved 22 September 2010.
- "Milan Jovanovic signs contract for two seasons". rsca.be (in Dutch) (rsca.be). 2 August 2011. Retrieved 2 August 2011.
- "Milan Jovanovic fully completes his move to Anderlecht". BBC Sport (BBC Sport). 5 August 2011. Retrieved 5 August 2011.
-  101 Great Goals: Former Liverpool flop Milan Jovanovic scores Le Tissier-esque Golazo for Anderlecht at Gent (English) 17 March 2013
-  Telegraf: Lane Jovanović u Vojvodini! (Serbian) 10 July 2013
- "Serbia cut Chelsea pair from World Cup squad". BBC Sport (BBC). 21 May 2010. Retrieved 24 May 2010.
- Lyon, Sam (18 June 2010). "Germany 0–1 Serbia". BBC Sport (BBC). Retrieved 19 June 2010.
- Kurir (Serbian): Jovanović zapretio Marinu da pazi kako igra protiv Srbije 18 June 2010
- Mondo (Serbian): "Pretnja" Srbinu Marinu 18 June 2010
- "Aussie soap neighbours declares Milan Jovanovic as one of the greatest soccer players in the world". www.offthepost.info. 18 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2011.
- "Neighbours declare Milan Jovanovic the greatest footballer ever". www.caughtoffside.com. 18 October 2011. Retrieved 18 October 2011.
- Includes other competitive competitions, including the Belgian Super Cup, Championship playoff