Legend of BH football, Ivica Osim passed away at the age of 81, it was confirmed for Klix.ba. Osim died this morning at 10:00 a.m. in Graz, where he had lived for the past few years.
Ivica Osim was born in Sarajevo in 1941. As he grew up in Grbavica, he actively started coaching football at Zeljeznicar. After leaving the juniors, he started playing for the first team in the 1959/1960 season, and for the club from Grbavica he played for a total of 11 years and during that time he collected 250 official appearances and scored 75 goals.
In 1970 he went to France, where he played for Strasbourg, Sedan and Valenciennes.
Strauss, as he was still known for his blonde hair, also played for the national team of the former Yugoslavia. He collected 16 appearances, scoring eight goals. He was one of the main players in winning second place at the 1968 European Championships.
During that time he was an uncharacteristically tall player, but of a characteristically long stride. He captivated with his incredible technique and the ease with which he surpassed the opposing players. It seemed as if the players were falling around him, and if he didn’t assist his teammates, he would score goals on his own. Radio and newspaper reporters often reported with astonishment that all this was succeeding, despite the slow movements. He was also named the best player in Yugoslavia in 1967.
He ended his playing career in 1978, after which he became very successful as a coach. He successfully led Zeljeznicar from 1978 to 1986. He was also the selector of the Yugoslav national team, the coach of Partizan, Panathinaikos, Sturm, JEF United, and his last coaching engagement was as the coach of Japan.
Then he also spoke about another very difficult moment for him, which happened on May 23, 1992, when he resigned as the coach of Yugoslavia, a country where the war was raging.
“I look at the resignation the same, it was a spontaneous gesture on my part, which seemed right to me then, but I would repeat it today. God forbid it should happen again, I guess we are smarter now,” said Osim in the interview.
When his playing career ended in 1978, Osim took the managaing job at the club where he began playing, Zeljeznicar. He managed the club until 1986, and finished third in the Yugoslav championship once, reached the Yugoslav Cup final once and the UEFA Cup semifinals once.