|Full name||Ivica Oli?|
|Date of birth||14 September 1979|
|Place of birth||Davor, SR Croatia, SFR Yugoslavia|
|Height||1.82 m (6 ft 0 in)|
|Croatia (assistant manager)|
|1998-2000||Hertha BSC II||30||(10)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
Ivica Oli? (pronounced [î?itsa ?:lit?]; born 14 September 1979) is a Croatian former professional footballer who is currently working as an assistant manager of the Croatia national team. During his career, he played for German Bundesliga clubs such as Hamburger SV, VfL Wolfsburg and Bayern Munich, and also for the Croatia national team. Oli? primarily played as a striker but could also operate as a winger. He has been described as a relentless pursuer of the ball and possessing "power and a decent bit of pace with him". Former Croatia manager Slaven Bili? described him as a typical "match-winner" and "king of important matches" due to his ability to score in important matches against big opponents.
Named the Croatian Footballer of the Year in 2009 and 2010, Oli? appeared with Bayern Munich in two UEFA Champions League finals in 2010 and 2012. He represented his country in three FIFA World Cups - in 2002, 2006 and 2014 - and two UEFA European Championships - in 2004 and 2008; earning his 100th cap on 16 November 2014, before retiring from international football in 2015.
Oli? was born and raised in the village of Davor near Slavonski Brod, Croatia. He started playing football for the local club NK Marsonia in 1996, and spent two good seasons there, before he was acquired by German club Hertha BSC in 1998. He did not see much play there and returned to Marsonia the following year, where he earned promotion to the top flight after winning the Croatian Second League with his team.
After another successful season at Marsonia, in the 2000-01 season, he scored 17 goals in 29 games - in 2001, he moved to NK Zagreb, where he scored 21 goals in 28 appearances and helped his team win the league. The following season, he moved to Dinamo Zagreb, where he scored 16 goals in 27 games, and became the best striker in the Croatian First League.
In 2003, Oli? was acquired by CSKA Moscow. His form rose gradually, and in the 2005 season, he contributed with ten goals in twice as many games. With CSKA Moscow, he won the UEFA Cup in 2005, the Russian Premier League three times (in 2003, 2005 and 2006), the Russian Cup twice (in 2005 and 2006), and twice the Russian Super Cup (2004 and 2006).
In January 2007, Oli? moved to Hamburger SV, playing his first Bundesliga match with them against Energie Cottbus on 31 January. He was signed because Hamburg were in deep trouble, finishing in the relegation zone before the winter break. It worked out in the end, and Hamburg finished seventh, which even acquired them a UEFA Intertoto Cup place, which they eventually won. He scored two goals in the last match in the 2006-07 Bundesliga season against Alemannia Aachen in a 4-0 win. In October 2007, Oli? scored a hat-trick in the Bundesliga match against VfB Stuttgart, which Hamburg won 4-1. He was the first player in the club's history to score three successive goals in one half.
Oli? effectively won the 2008 Emirates Cup for Hamburg, with two injury time goals against Juventus, increasing the team's points tally to an unassailable level (due to the points-for-goals system). He endeared himself to Hamburg fans for his commitment and consistent work rate on the pitch. In his last game for the north German club, he sported a T-shirt with the words, "Danke fans" ("Thank you, fans") written on it, as he bid farewell to the fans.
On 3 January 2009, Oli? signed a three-year contract with Bundesliga rivals Bayern Munich. He joined the club on a free transfer on 1 July 2009. Initially, he was supposed to be back-up to the likes of Miroslav Klose and Mario Gómez, but due to injury and fitness issues, he began to be preferred as the club's first choice. On 8 August, his Bayern debut, he scored the opening goal against 1899 Hoffenheim in a 1-1 draw and soon became a favourite with the Bayern fans. He reached new heights upon scoring a crucial goal in the 2010 Champions League quarter-final (first leg) against Manchester United in injury time, to give Bayern a slender 2-1 lead. He also scored the first goal in the second leg for his team, but they trailed 3-1. The game ended 3-2. Bayern, however, won on away goals. He scored his first hat-trick for the Bavarians against Lyon, scoring with his left foot, right foot, and his head, in the Champions League semi-final second leg on 27 April 2010. The victory against Lyon secured his team a place in the final against Internazionale, which they eventually lost 2-0. On 3 April 2012, he scored a brace in a 2-0 win against Marseille in the 2011-12 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals. Oli? played his final game for Bayern in the 2012 UEFA Champions League Final against Chelsea, in which he came on as a 97th-minute substitute for the injured Franck Ribéry. Bayern eventually lost the game in a penalty shootout when the game ended 1-1 after extra time. Oli? missed the team's fourth penalty, as they lost the shootout 4-3.
Oli? signed for VfL Wolfsburg at the start of the 2012-13 season. He scored his first Bundesliga goal for Wolfsburg against Greuther Fürth, and he netted another one against Fortuna Düsseldorf. He started the season with a hat-trick against Schönberg 95 in the 2012-13 DFB-Pokal. He scored another goal in the quarter-final match of the DFB-Pokal against Kickers Offenbach on 26 February 2013, as Wolfsburg secured a spot in the semi-finals. He produced an "acrobatic overhead kick" to score the first of his two goals in a 5-2 win against SC Freiburg in March 2013. He finished the season as first-choice striker for the club, with 15 goals and 6 assists. On 24 April 2014, Oli? signed a new two-year deal with the German side. In the opening match of the 2014-15 Bundesliga season, he scored a spectacular goal against his former club Bayern Munich.
Oli? returned to Hamburger SV on 30 January 2015 after signing an 18-month contract for an undisclosed fee. He was given kit number 8, but at the end of the 2014-15 season, Ivo Ili?evi? changed his kit number from 11 to 7, prompting Oli? to reclaim number 11, which he had worn previously at both Bayern and Wolfsburg, and also in his first spell at Hamburg.
On 26 July 2016, Oli? signed a one-year deal with 2. Bundesliga side 1860 Munich. On 25 June 2017, Oli? announced his retirement. Later, he revoked that comment saying "I know Bild published I am retiring, but that is not true," he told Sportske novosti. "Maybe I have played my last game and maybe not. It is the same as last summer - if I receive an offer that is good for me, I will continue."
Oli? was part of the Croatia national team at the 2002 FIFA World Cup, where he played in two games and scored one important goal against Italy in a 2-1 Croatia victory. Shortly after scoring, Oli? revealed a picture of his newly born child at the time under his jersey. He was remembered as being unable to put his jersey back on, as the material became tangled in the excitement during his celebration. Oli? also played three games for Croatia at UEFA Euro 2004 and two games at the 2006 World Cup.
In September 2006, Oli? was dropped from the Croatian squad for a Euro 2008 qualifying match for one game, due to a late-night partying binge together with Darijo Srna and Bo?ko Balaban. He was named man of the match in the very last qualifier of their group, in which Croatia defeated England 3-2 at Wembley Stadium. He was named in Croatia's 23-man squad for the final tournament, and scored in their second Group B match against Germany to give the Croats a 2-1 shock win over the pre-tournament favourites.
Oli? was recalled to the side for the 2010 World Cup qualifiers. He contributed with three goals in eight games, but Croatia missed out on a play-off spot by a point. Oli? was injured in a friendly match against Norway, which was the cause of his last-moment absence in Euro 2012. On 22 March 2013, Oli? scored his first goal since November 2011 and assisted Mario Mand?uki? in a qualifier for the 2014 World Cup against Serbia. In the opening game of the finals, on 12 June, his left-wing cross led to the first goal of the tournament, deflected into his own net by Marcelo of Brazil. In the second group game against Cameroon on 18 June, Oli? opened the scoring in the 11th minute for an eventual 4-0 win. It was his first goal after 12 years in the World Cup, a difference only previously matched by Denmark's Michael Laudrup, and with this goal he became his country's oldest World Cup goal-scorer.
On 16 November 2014, in a Euro 2016 qualifying match against Italy at the San Siro, Oli? earned his 100th cap in a 1-1 draw. On 2 March 2016, Oli? retired from international football in an open letter to the public. He scored 20 goals in 104 caps for his country.
Oli? and his wife Natalia have two sons and a daughter, named Luka, Antonio and Lara, respectively. Unlike many of his counterparts, he prefers to keep a low media profile and generally lives a quiet private life.
|Hertha BSC II||1998-99||NOFV-Oberliga||15||9||--||15||9|
|1999-2000||Regionalliga - Süd||15||1||15||1|
|NK Zagreb||2001-02||Prva HNL||28||21||2||0||--||30||23|||
|CSKA Moscow||2003||Premier League||10||7||2||1||0||0||--||12||8|||
|1860 Munich||2016-17||2. Bundesliga||30||5||1||0||--||2||0||33||5|||
|1||17 April 2002||Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia||3||Bosnia and Herzegovina||Friendly|
|2||8 June 2002||Kashima Soccer Stadium, Kashima, Japan||5||Italy||2002 FIFA World Cup|
|3||30 April 2003||Råsunda Stadium, Stockholm, Sweden||12||Sweden||Friendly|
|4||11 October 2003||Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia||17||Bulgaria||UEFA Euro 2004 qualifying|
|5||29 May 2004||Kantrida Stadium, Rijeka, Croatia||22||Slovakia||Friendly|
|6||5 June 2004||Parken Stadium, Copenhagen, Denmark||23||Denmark|
|7||16 October 2007||Kantrida Stadium, Rijeka, Croatia||48||Slovakia|
|9||21 November 2007||Wembley Stadium, London, England||50||England||UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying|
|10||12 June 2008||Hypo-Arena, Klagenfurt, Austria||56||Germany||UEFA Euro 2008|
|11||15 October 2008||Maksimir Stadium, Zagreb, Croatia||62||Andorra||2010 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|12||12 August 2009||Dinamo Stadium, Minsk, Belarus||65||Belarus|
|14||3 September 2010||Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia||71||Latvia||UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying|
|15||11 November 2011||Türk Telekom Arena, Istanbul, Turkey||75||Turkey||UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying|
|16||22 March 2013||Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb, Croatia||82||Serbia||2014 FIFA World Cup qualification|
|17||5 March 2014||AFG Arena, St. Gallen, Switzerland||90||Switzerland||Friendly|
|19||18 June 2014||Arena da Amazônia, Manaus, Brazil||94||Cameroon||2014 FIFA World Cup|
|20||28 March 2015||Stadion Maksimir, Zagreb, Croatia||101||Norway||UEFA Euro 2016 qualifying|
Hertha BSC II