Croatian Footballer of the Year
The Croatian Footballer of the Year (Croatian: Nogometaš godine) is the most prestigious annual association football award in Croatia. It is awarded by the newspaper Večernji list to the best Croatian football player in the preceding year, regardless of the league they play in, based on a points system which measures their performances for both club and country. The award is usually presented in a ceremony hosted by the Croatian Football Federation.
The award was established in 1972 and, until 1990, the award was given to the best Yugoslav player in the preceding year. Since the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1991, the award is given to the best Croatian player. Luka Modrić holds the record for most wins, with eight awards. Davor Šuker is second with six awards. They are followed by Dado Pršo with three wins from 2003 to 2005.
In 1995, a separate award, the Hope of the Year (Croatian: Nada godine), was introduced. It is awarded to the best young Croatian player. As of 2016, only Ivica Olić and Luka Modrić have won both the Hope of the Year and Footballer of the Year awards.
List of winners
Yugoslav Footballer of the Year (1972–90)
† denotes shared wins
|Year||Yugoslav Footballer of the Year|
|1972||Dušan Bajević (1)||24||FW||Velež|
|1973||Enver Marić (1)||25||GK||Velež|
|1974||Josip Katalinski (1)||26||DF||Željezničar|
|1975||Ivan Buljan (1)||26||DF||Hajduk Split|
|1976||Ivica Šurjak (1)||23||MF||Hajduk Split|
|1977||Dražen Mužinić (1)||24||MF||Hajduk Split|
|1978||Vilson Džoni (1) †||28||DF||Dinamo Zagreb|
|Nenad Stojković (1) †||22||DF||Partizan|
|1979||Safet Sušić (1) †||24||MF||FK Sarajevo|
|Velimir Zajec (1) †||23||MF||Dinamo Zagreb|
|1980||Vladimir Petrović (1)||25||MF||Red Star|
|1981||Zlatko Vujović (1)||23||FW||Hajduk Split|
|1982||Ivan Gudelj (1)||22||MF||Hajduk Split|
|1983||Zoran Simović (1)||29||GK||Hajduk Split|
|1984||Velimir Zajec (2)||28||MF||Panathinaikos|
|1985||Blaž Slišković (1)||26||MF||Hajduk Split|
|1986||Semir Tuce (1)||22||MF||Velež|
|1987||Marko Mlinarić (1)||27||MF||Dinamo Zagreb|
|1988||Dragan Stojković (1)||23||MF||Red Star|
|1989||Dragan Stojković (2)||24||MF||Red Star|
|1990||Robert Prosinečki (1)||21||MF||Red Star|
Croatian Footballer of the Year (1991–present)
Notes on club name changes:
- Dinamo Zagreb changed their name to "HAŠK Građanski" in June 1991 and then again in February 1993 to "Croatia Zagreb". They reverted to "Dinamo Zagreb" in February 2000.
- Present-day NK Varaždin was called "Varteks" from 1958 until June 2010.
Players in bold are still active. Wins in italics denote wins in Yugoslav competition before 1991.
|8||Luka Modrić||2007, 2008, 2011, 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019||Dinamo Zagreb, Tottenham Hotspur, Real Madrid|
|6||Davor Šuker||1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998||Sevilla, Real Madrid|
|3||Dado Pršo||2003, 2004, 2005||AS Monaco, Rangers|
|2||Velimir Zajec||1979, 1984||Dinamo Zagreb, Panathinaikos|
|Dragan Stojković||1988, 1989||Red Star Belgrade|
|Robert Prosinečki||1990, 1997||Red Star Belgrade, Croatia Zagreb|
|Zvonimir Boban||1991, 1999||Milan|
|Ivica Olić||2009, 2010||Bayern Munich|
|Mario Mandžukić||2012, 2013||Bayern Munich|
- Sportske novosti Yellow Shirt award, for the HNL footballer of the year, given by the Croatian sport newspaper Sportske novosti, chosen by sport journalists.
- Football Oscar, given by the Croatian union Football syndicate, chosen by players and managers of league clubs.
- Prva HNL Best Player of the Year, given by the Croatian web site Tportal, chosen by captains of league clubs.
- "Za njega ništa nije nemoguće, nadmašio je čak i Šukera!". vecernji.hr (in Croatian). 24 December 2018. Retrieved 7 January 2019.
- "Modrića nisu uljuljale silne nagrade, samo su ga motivirale da opet bude - najbolji!". vecernji.hr (in Croatian). 29 December 2019. Retrieved 1 May 2020.
- Puric, Bojan (2 January 2005). ""Vecernji list" Player of the Year". Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation. Retrieved 3 May 2011.
- "VL Player of the Year 2014". Vecernji List. 27 December 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2014.
- "Luka Modrić dobio još jednu renomiranu nagradu: 'O ovome sam maštao!'". Vecernji List. 10 January 2017. Retrieved 11 January 2017.
- "Modric equals Suker with Croatian Footballer of the Year award – FourFourTwo". 1 January 2018. Retrieved 4 January 2018.
- Flak, Igor; Jurišić, Predrag (31 December 2010). "U Bayernu će se još jednom klanjati Ivici Oliću" (in Croatian). Večernji list. Retrieved 4 May 2011.