It was first published as a weekly magazine on 9 August 1945 (then called Ilustrirane fiskulturne novine). It changed its name to Narodni sport on 10 December 1945. Since March 1949 it was published twice a week, and since 1951 three times per week.
In 1962 it was acquired by the Vjesnik publishing company. Its name was changed to Sportske novosti on 1 March 1962 and from then on it was published five times per week. Since 1967 it was published six times per week (every day except on Sundays). From 1974 to 1987 it had a circulation of 100,000 copies which turned Sportske novosti into the most popular sports newspaper in Yugoslavia. Its great sales figures were helped by expert journalists, large number of contributors, graphic design innovations, region-oriented reporting and comprehensive coverage of international sporting events. It also used to publish several sports magazines (SN revija, Sport magazin, Super Sport).
In 1999 it was acquired by Europapress holding publishing company and since 2001 it is regularly published on Sundays. Later that year the Sportske Novosti Footballer of the Year award for the best football player in the world as voted by some of the world's top coaches and players was established. On 30 December 2005 Zvonimir Boban was appointed CEO of Sportske novosti who later announced that the newspaper would in the future give more attention to football-related news. Boban resigned from his position in December 2008 due to his long-standing dissatisfaction with the editorial board.