Wednesday, 15 March 2023

Hajduk U19s Make History and Advance to UEFA Youth League Semi-final!

March 15, 2023 - Hajduk U19s are in the semi-final of the UEFA Youth Champions League!

In the quarter-final match at Signal Iduna Park in Germany, Hajduk U19s defeated Borussia Dortmund on penalties. After 90 minutes it was 1-1, and Marijan Budimir's team won 9-8 on pens after a wild shootout.

Dortmund maintained possession throughout the match while Hajduk had more chances. Hajduk had its first serious attempt in the 21st minute when Roko Brajković's left-footed shot went just short of the goal post. Hajduk missed an even bigger chance in the 64th minute. 

A more concrete game by Hajduk finally resulted in a goal in the 72nd minute. Brajković precisely crossed from the right side to Mate Antunović who found the back of the net with a beautiful header for the lead! 

However, Borussia came back only four minutes later. Julian Rijkhoff accurately executed the penalty kick after Tomislav Arković fouled Michel Ludwig.  Hajduk was not swayed by that goal, and they were close to winning even before the penalty shootout. Brunner almost shook his own net after Hrgović's cross hit the top of the crossbar and was saved by the Dortmund defense.

The drama of penalties did not prove to be a problem for Hajduk. During the eight rounds, both sides were infallible, but in the ninth, Hajduk's goalkeeper Borna Buljan saved Filippo Mane's shot, while Ante Kavelj scored for the big celebration! 

With this victory against Borussia Dortmund, the Hajduk U19s qualified for the semi-finals of the UEFA Youth League. Hajduk has thus made history and became the first Croatian club to reach the semi-finals of this competition. 

The final tournament will be played in Nyon, Switzerland, from April 21 to 24. In addition to Hajduk, Sporting, AZ Alkmaar, and AC Milan advanced to the semi-finals.

On April 21, Hajduk will play against AC Milan, while Sporting and AZ will compete in the second semi-final. 

The final is scheduled for three days later, on April 24. 

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Tuesday, 28 February 2023

Hajduk Juniors Top Manchester City for UEFA Youth League Quarterfinals!

February 28, 2023 - Hajduk Juniors brilliantly knock out Manchester City and advance to the UEFA Youth League quarterfinals!

The Hajduk juniors side met the powerful Manchester City in the UEFA Youth League round of 16 at Poljud. Recall, Hajduk reached the round of 16 after beating Shakhtar.

Coach Marijan Budimir's team was without its standard stopper Luka Vušković and captain Marko Capan, but welcomed the return of Roko Brajković from the first team.

More than 3,000 tickets were sold for this match until yesterday evening, and many of the Hajduk season ticket holders made their way to Poljud today. Torcida was also in full force. 


Hajduk: Buljan - Đolonga, Jurić-Petrašilo, Arković, Hrgović - Kavelj, Reić - Brajković, Skoko, Vrcić - Antunović

Manchester City: Murray-Jones - Samuel, Burns, Katongo, Galvez - Adam, Charles, Bobb - Mebude, Dickson, Borges

To no one's surprise, the favorites were City in this match, but Hajduk came out to prove they are a force to be reckoned with. 

A great opportunity for Hajduk came already in the 6th minute. Reić found Vrcić through the middle in front of City goalkeeper Murray-Jones, but the shot was saved. 

The first half was even and Hajduk showed that it was a good match for City. In the 15th minute, Mebude broke through the right side and shot, but luckily the ball went over Hajduk's goal. City threatened again a few minutes later, but it was Hajduk to take the lead first.

After Murray-Jones intercepted a long pass about 20 meters from his own goal, Brajković ran onto the rebound and sent it into an empty net from the first touch. Hajduk was up 1-0 in the 24th minute! 

And just when Poljud got done celebrating the first goal - their second found the back of the net! Antunovic found space in the defense to score near post for 2-0! 

Hajduk's defense did well to keep any danger away from their goal, but the 19-year-old wonderkid Oscar Bobb was left alone in the penalty area to score for 2-1 at the half. 

City tried hard to equalize in the second half, with several opportunities saved by Hajduk's solid defense. Hajduk had a good chance in the 49th minute. Hrgović passed on the left side and found Antunović in the penalty area, but he shot wide of the goal. 

Hajduk made their first substitutions in the 59th minute - Reić and Skoko went out for Čalušić and Nazor. City made their first subs in the 63rd minute - Oboavwoduo came on for Adam.

Hajduk didn't really have a chance at goal in the second half apart from Antunović's in the 49th minute. City had some good chances from dangerous free kicks, but nothing found the back of the net. 

And then a spurt of chaos in the 84th minute - Finley Burns was sent off with a red card. City was playing with a man down for the remainder of the match. 

A dangerous free kick for City in the 86th minute finished without success. Four minutes of stoppage time were added, and Hajduk held their own for the 2-1 victory! 

Hajduk will play in the quarter-finals against the winner of Borussia Dortmund and PSG. If Hajduk advances, they will play away in the quarter-final. 

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 23 April 2022

Wonderkid Roko Šimić Leads RB Salzburg to UEFA Youth League Final!

April 23, 2022 - 18-year-old Croatian footballer Roko Šimić was RB Salzburg's hero on Friday night and will play in this season's UEFA Youth League final!

You've likely heard a thing or two about wonderkid Roko Šimić, who recently made the list of the 50 best football talents of the next generation according to GOAL, with the Croatian striker coming in at #36. 

“Red Bull Salzburg’s conveyor belt of attacking talent is showing no signs of slowing, with Roko Šimić set to be one of the latest strikers to emerge at the Austrian champions. The son of Croatia legend Dario Šimić, the 18-year-old joined Salzburg for €4m in the summer of 2021 having become the youngest scorer in Lokomotiva Zagreb history the previous season. Šimic, who has been likened to both Erling Haaland and Dusan Vlahovic, has since signed a fresh four-year deal at Salzburg after breaking into the first-team squad, with Real Madrid, Arsenal and Tottenham among those rumoured to be tracking him,” GOAL wrote back in March.  

But Roko's talents aren't just because of his famous father Dario, who you may remember playing the shirts of Inter Milan, AC Milan, and Monaco. 

Namely, the 18-year-old Roko Šimić and RB Salzburg beat Atletico Madrid 5-0. Recall, the Spanish club was better than the Hajduk Juniors this season, with the Split club losing at Poljud on penalties in the playoff round of this competition. 


Šimić was unstoppable against Madrid. In the 15th minute, he brought his team to the lead, while in the 28th minute he scored a penalty for 2-0. But Roko wasn't done - he also assisted Kameri who scored 3-0 in the 44th minute!

In the second half, Sahin scored the fourth goal in the 67th minute and Dikite for 5-0 in the 89th minute.

In the final, RB Salzburg will play against Benfica, which beat Juventus 6-5 after a penalty shootout. After 90 minutes it was 2-2, with Benfica leading 2-0 with goals from Martim Neto in the 3rd and Luis Semed in the 10th minute. But at the end of the first half, Benefica played with a man down and Juventus used the upper hand to equalize at 2-2. The scorers were Chibozo in the 51st minute and Turicchi in the 73rd minute.

The final match will be played on Monday, April 25, at 6 pm. 

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Wednesday, 9 February 2022

UEFA Youth League Playoff: Atletico Madrid Tops Hajduk Juniors on Penalties at Poljud

February 9, 2022 - The Hajduk juniors team met Atletico Madrid in the UEFA Youth League playoff round at Poljud Stadium in Split on Wednesday. 

In the first two rounds, Hajduk eliminated Tetovo club Shkendija and the Belarusian champions Minsk. They achieved three wins and a draw, with a goal difference of 9:2.

Atletico reached the playoffs as the second-placed team in Group B. Coached by Fernando Torres, Atletico recorded 10 points - three wins, one draw, and two defeats. Porto was behind Atletico in third, while the group winner was Liverpool with 11 points.

Only one game is played in the playoff round, there is no overtime, and in the event of a draw, penalties are taken. The capacity of Poljud stadium was limited on Wednesday due to epidemiological measures (40%). 8,761 fans were in attendance. Hajduk was the host of the match because they were the Croatian champion. 


Hajduk: Silić, Letaj, Capan, Čuić, Brkljača, Hrgović, Pukštas, Prpić, Krolo, Bradarić, Ljubičić 

Atletico: Iturbe, Diez, Navarro, Kamara, Kostis, Curras, Gismera, Corral, Barrios, El Jebari, Martin


We saw a very even first half with one attempt on goal for Hajduk compared to Atletico's two. However, a highlight of the first half came for Hajduk in the final minute when a free kick was awarded outside the box.  Capan sent the ball into the box which Cuic headed into the crossbar. With chaos in front of the Atletico keeper from the rebound, Hajduk ultimately sent the ball over the goal line, which the ref called back for an offensive foul. 

The match ended 0:0 going into halftime. 

Atletico came our far more aggressive to start the second half, with two corners in the 56th and 58th minutes. 

Hajduk made its first substitutions in the 61st minute - Lazar came on for Krolo, and Vrcic for Cuic. Less than 10 minutes later, Vladusic replaced Brkljaca. 

Neither team was able to find the back of the net in the second half, either, bringing the match to penalties.


Ljubicic went up first for Hajduk and hit the post. 

Curras scored Atletico's first penalty 0:1.

Hrgovic scored Hajduk's next penalty - 1:1.

Atletico missed their second penalty to keep it 1:1! 

Vrcic scored for 2:1. 

Atletico made their next one for 2:2.

Capan missed to keep it 2:2. 

Atletico took the lead again thanks to Martin for 2:3. 

Hajduk missed their last penalty for Atletico to move ahead in the Youth League. 

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page