Zvonimir Boban: the Superhuman
Many think, perhaps even rightly, that football is a simple sport. On the contrary, the media spiel that accompanies modern football only makes it even more unpleasant to the snobbish eyes of a certain audience, the fact that it is so viscerally followed to the point of being considered almost a faith, a feeling, comes in some way. ridiculed. After all, let's look each other in the eye, football is a game. It's just a game, we shouldn't take ourselves too seriously. At least not all, at least not always. Not so for people like Zvodimir Boban.
6 Republics, 5 Nations , 4 languages, 3 religions, 2 alphabets, one Titus
Behind 22 players who run after a ball, behind tackles, shots and plays, there is the deepest humanity. The way the footballer looks at the ball, how his foot kicks it, the kind of exultation. There are many small signs that allow between the lines to translate a unique language that can give life stories. But it can also happen that behind 22 players on the pitch, behind the fans, always so mistreated by the advent of modernity in football, there are armies, governments, peoples. Put that May 13, 1990. At the Maksimir Stadium, between the slopes of Mount Medvednica and the Sava, the first act of the Balkan War is staged. There is no cup, there is no ranking, there is no score. There is geopolitics in play. There is a Yugoslavia that slowly begins to crumble and to show it to the whole world, because the regime's banks began to dissolve definitively in the face of the vital need of the peoples, of the many peoples put together. Only a memory will remain of the land of Tito. And Boban still doesn't know.
The crumbling of the Balkans
On that afternoon in Zagreb, the home team, Dinamo and Belgrade Red Star are apparently on the pitch. On the stands, however, what is metaphorically happening throughout the Balkan territory is staged. A week earlier, the nationalist Franjo Tuđman won the first Croatian elections, with the global geopolitical scenario changing in the space of two years. The Wall was gone and the Slavic dictatorship was slowly crumbling like reinforced concrete that fell under the blows of pickaxes between West and East Berlin.
Dinamo Zagreb - Red Star, beyond football
For this reason the match between Dinamo Zagreb - Croatian team - and Red Star of Belgrade - Serbian team - became a special and metaphorical showdown between Croatian nationalists in the wake of self-proclaimed independence and the Socialist Serbian masters who defended the work of Slobodan Milošević. From Belgrade about 3,000 Delje, a fringe of Red Star fans, had become 3,000 soldiers led by expedition leader Željko Ražnatović, later known to the world as the tiger "Arkan". The figure of Ražnatović will go down in history not only as the "leader" of the Red Star supporters, but above all as the leader of paramilitary groups during the war in the Balkans. The scenery is surreal enough to leave that afternoon to history. The 3,000 delje, led by "Arkan", enter the stadium, after having already created clashes outside, they are isolated in the guest sector. In the pre-match the Serbian curve destroys everything in front of it, from advertising signs to child seats. All accompanied by chants of threat against the newly born Croatian nation. Until the clashes took over on the pitch and in the rest of the stadium. A real guerrilla warfare. Faced with the bellicose intent of the Delje, the Croatian fans tried to defend themselves, were it not for the fact that the Zagreb police were mostly in favor of the regime. Everything was allowed, the policemen became more delje. It was no longer a question of football, nor of police, but of a real guerrilla that resulted on the green lawn.
Dejan Savicevic and Zvodimir Boban: the Slavic stars
And to think that the match had to decide the fate of the championship. Two of the brightest stars of that generation of phenomena: Dejan Savicevic, a Montenegrin who played with the red and white shirt of the Red Star, and Zvonimir Boban, playmaker of Dinamo Zagreb. Two crystalline talents, who from simple adversaries on the field, find themselves in war. A narrow escape for the "Genius" Savicevic, who, together with the Red Star players, was escorted to the locker room by some policemen. In fact, the Serbian team will be able to escape in a military helicopter. Fate completely opposite to the players of Dinamo. Some players remained on the pitch to witness what was happening on the green lawn. Among them is a 21-year-old boy, as strong as he is brave, born in Imoschi, in Dalmatia, just before Herzegovina. With his feet she knew how to do us very well.He had a dream in your heart wear the Milan shirt Silvio Berlusconi. Zvodimir Boban told years later during his collaboration with the Gazzetta dello Sport, the dawn of the feeling of him.
Thanks to the pen of CasaBaggio .