Sports Nicknames - Zorro, Zvone

Zvonimir Boban is a legendary Croatian footballer, who spent his best years playing for AC Milan as a playmaker.

Zvonimir Boban - Zvone - Zorro - Illustration and profile drawing.  The star of AC Milan in the 1990s and also the Croatian national team.

Boban's career started at Dinamo Zagreb, where he became the team captain at the young age of 19. He played in Zagreb for three seasons, before signing for AC Milan. In Milan, "Zorro" as his teammates called him because of his trademark musketeer mustache, was instrumental in the 1994 Champions League trophy win, when they beat a very good Barcelona team managed by Johan Cruyf, by 4-0 in the final. AC Milan went all the way to the final of the tournament the following year as well, with Boban playing a key role. With Boban dominating the midfield, AC Milan won four Serie A titles and three Supercups.

Zvone, as he is called in Croatia, played for the Yugoslavian national team starting from the youth levels and was an important player in the team that won the FIFA World Youth Championship in 1987. He played games for the senior side as well, and after Croatia gained independence he was part of the "Vatreni" team that came third in the 1998 World Cup.

Zvonimir Boban was a hard-working player with a vision. Very technical and intelligent. He knew how to bend shots from afar, he knew how to dribble and use feints. He was two-footed, agressive and very crafty.

Perhaps, Zvonimir Boban is most famous for his antics in a football match between Dinamo Zagreb and Red Star Belgrade that preceded the war between Croatia and Serbia. During absolute madness in the stands and in the field due to hooliganism, Boban's photo of karate-kicking a police officer in the face - to save a Dinamo Zagreb fan from getting beaten up, was the headline photo in every major newspaper around the world. At that moment Boban became a national hero for Croatia.

Zvone retired in 2002, finished his degree and has since had jobs working as a sports journalist. He has held jobs at FIFA and AC Milan offices and most recently he was hired as the Chief of Football of UEFA.


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