Ivan Vukomanović

Ivan Vukomanović (Serbian Cyrillic: Иван Вукомановић; born 19 June 1977) is a Serbian professional football manager and former player who is the current head coach of Indian Super League club Kerala Blasters.

Ivan Vukomanović
Vukomanović with blasters 2022.jpg
Vukomanović with Kerala Blasters in 2022
Personal information
Date of birth (1977-06-19) 19 June 1977 (age 45)
Place of birth Titovo Užice, SR Serbia, SFR Yugoslavia
Height 1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Position(s) Defender, defensive midfielder
Team information
Current team
Kerala Blasters (head coach)
Youth career
Sloboda Užice
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1994–1996 Sloboda Užice 34 (2)
1997–1998 Obilić 40 (4)
1998–2003 Bordeaux 9 (0)
1999–2000Red Star Belgrade (loan) 23 (0)
20001. FC Köln (loan) 2 (0)
2001Red Star Belgrade (loan) 19 (0)
2002Rad (loan) 15 (0)
2002–2003Dynamo Moscow (loan) 14 (0)
2004 Alania Vladikavkaz 0 (0)
2005–2008 Lokeren 62 (4)
2008Maccabi Herzliya (loan) 11 (2)
2008–2009 Royal Antwerp 19 (0)
2010 Qingdao Jonoon
2011 Zandvliet Sport
Total 248 (12)
International career
1998–2000 FR Yugoslavia U21 5 (1)
Managerial career
2013–2014 Standard Liège (assistant)
2014–2015 Standard Liège
2016–2017 Slovan Bratislava
2019 Apollon Limassol (interim)
2021– Kerala Blasters
*Club domestic league appearances and goals

Playing careerEdit

Vukomanović played as a defender during his playing days. He was also used as a defensive midfielder. He started his professional career at Serbian club FK Sloboda Užice. Vukomanović later played for Obilić, where he won the 1997–98 First League of FR Yugoslavia title. Vukomanović then moved to the Ligue 1 side Bordeaux.[1] With the French club, he won the 1998–99 French Division 1. Throughout his career, he played for several top tier clubs, which includes the Serbian side Red Star Belgrade, Bundesliga’s FC Köln, Belgian side Royal Antwerp F.C and Russian club FC Dynamo Moscow.[2] With Red Star Belgrade, he had won the 1999–2000 and 2000–01 season of First League of FR Yugoslavia along with the FR Yugoslavia Cup in 2000. Vukamanovic fully retired from professional football in 2011 at the age of 34.[3] At the national level, he had represented FR Yugoslavia national under-21 football team.

Managerial careerEdit

Standard LiègeEdit

Vukomanović started his coaching career at Belgian Pro League club Standard Liège, where he assisted Guy Luzon ahead of the club's 2013-14 season.[4] During this time, Liège played the Europa League after winning all the games in the qualifying stages. Following Luzon’s exit in October 2014, Vukomanović took charge as their head coach.[5] His first game ever game as a head coach was against Spanish giants Sevilla in the Europa League, where the match ended in a goalless draw. Under his coaching, Standard Liege picked 28 out of a possible 39 points in the league. In February 2015, despite getting some good results, the club replaced him with Jose Riga midway into the season citing lack of experience as a head coach.[6] He was offered the assistant manager role under Riga, to which he responded; "To propose to me to remain in the staff, it is only to be politically correct towards the players and the supporters. I could have been fake and say yes. Tap Riga on the shoulder and then do nothing but I'm not like that. I'm a straightforward, honest person. So I decided to leave Standard".[7]

Slovan BratislavaEdit

In 2016, Vukomanović was appointed as the manager of the Slovak Super Liga side Slovan Bratislava.[8] Under his helm, the club finished second-place finish in the league. His first title as a manager came in 2017, where he guided Slovan Bratislava to the 2017–18 Slovak Cup title. Vukomanović had a decent second season Slovan Bratislava. With just five defeats from 22 games, he parted ways with the club following a draw against FK Senica on 28 October 2017.[9]

Apollon LimassolEdit

After a two year hiatus, Vukomanović returned to coaching in September 2019 by signing with Cypriot First Division club Apollon Limassol as their interim head coach and led them in four matches.[10]

Kerala BlastersEdit

2021–22: Appointment and ISL finalsEdit

On 17 June 2021, Kerala Blasters announced that Vukomanović has been appointed as the Indian Super League club's new head coach ahead of the 2021–22 season.[11][12] Under Vukomanović, Kerala Blasters won their first game of the season in the 2021 Durand Cup match against Indian Navy with a score of 0–1 on 11 September 2021.[13] His first Indian Super League match as the manager of Kerala Blasters ended in 4–2 defeat on 19 November against ATK Mohun Bagan FC.[14][15] The following two games saw Blasters drawing against NorthEast United FC and Bengaluru FC respectively.[16] It was on 5 December that Vukomanović's Blasters side saw their first league win as they defeated Odisha FC by 2–1 at full-time,[17] and helped Kerala Blasters to seal their first Indian Super League victory in 11 months.[18] The Blasters' then won back-to-back games against defending champions Mumbai City FC and against rivals Chennaiyin FC,[19] and made it to the top four in the table.[20][21] The Blasters' unbeaten streak under Vukomanović continued, and they moved to the top of the table for the first time in eight years during the mid-season after the 1–0 victory over Hyderabad FC on 9 January 2022.[22] Under his management, the Blasters qualified for the ISL finals for the first time since 2016 after beating Jamshedpur FC 2–1 on aggregate score from both legs.[23] They faced Hyderabad in the final on 20 March, which they lost in penalty shoot-out.[24] The club reached numerous milestones during the season including a 10-match unbeaten run which made them climb to the top of the table for the first time in its history. The Blasters also recorded its highest goals scored, highest points obtained, highest number of wins and least number of losses. They also achieved a positive goal difference for the first time in the club's history.[25]

2022–23: Contract extension, walkout, and AIFF banEdit

On 4 April, the club announced the contract extension of Vukomanović for three more years until 2025.[26][27] It was the first time that the club has renewed the contract of a first-team head coach since its inception in 2014.[28] The 2022–23 Indian Super League began on a high note with a 3–1 victory over SC East Bengal on 7 October 2022 which was also his first home game as the Blasters manager after the regular home-away format returned after the COVID-19 regulation.[29] Despite of this, the Blasters suffered three defeats in a row.[30] They came back to the winning ways after defeating NorthEast United FC 3–0 on 5 November in an away game.[31] On 13 November, the Blasters broke FC Goa's unbeaten six year run against them after a 3–1 win.[32] This also marked Vukomanović's 14th win as the manager of the Blasters and broke David James' record for most number of wins for the club. On 19 November, he became the first manager in the history of the club to record three consecutive win after defeating Hyderabad 1–0 in an away game.[33] In this season under Vukomanović, the Blasters won five consecutive matches for the first time in their history until they drew against Chennaiyin on 19 December.[34] On 3 February 2023, Vukamanovic served his 42nd game as the manager of Kerala Blasters and broke David James' record of managing the most number of games for the club.[35] On 7 February, the Blasters registered their 10th win during the 2022–23 Indian Super League season after defeating Chennaiyin FC 2–1 at home.[36] This was the first time in their history that the club won 10 games in a season.[37] On 16 February, the Blasters qualified for the 2022–23 season playoffs, making Vukamanovic the first manager in the club's history to lead them into consecutive playoffs.[38] On 3 March, the Blasters played against Bengaluru FC in the playoffs which was subjected to controversy.[39] Sunil Chhetri scored a controversial free-kick goal in the 96th minute.[40] Following the goal, the Blasters players walked-off the pitch after Vukomanović called them off from the pitch.[41] Kerala Blasters forfeited the match after claiming that the referee Crystal John did not blow the whistle before Chhetri took the kick and the players were not ready in their defensive positions.[42] The next day, Vukamanovic and the whole team received a warm welcome at the Kochi airport with the chants of “Ivan, Ivan,” and “we are with you”.[43] Kerala Blasters later alleged that the referee asked Luna to move away from ball and hence the free kick should have only been allowed following a whistle. The club also asked for a ban on the referee Crystal John.[44] Later, Vukomanović was separately charged by the All India Football Federation's Disciplinary Committee for 'bringing the game into disrepute'.[45][46] The AIFF DC that met on 31 March then imposed a 10-match ban along with a fine of 5 lakhs Indian rupees on Vukomanović for 'the abandonment and bringing the game into disrepute' under the Article 9.1.2 of the AIFF disciplinary code and directed Vukomanović to issue a public apology within a week, failing which the fine would be doubled to 10 lakhs Indian rupees.[47] The 10-match ban meant that Vukomanović would not be permitted to be a part of the team's dressing room or the team bench as per the Article 9.1.6 of the disciplinary code in the next 10 matches of the AIFF held tournaments regardless of which team he is contracted with.[48]

Managerial statisticsEdit

As of matches played 3 March 2023
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record Ref.
G W D L GF GA GD Win %
Standard Liège 20 October 2014 2 February 2015 18 9 2 7 23 24 −1 050.00 [49]
Slovan Bratislava 2 August 2016 30 October 2017 57 33 10 14 107 57 +50 057.89 [50][51]
Apollon Limassol 9 September 2019 3 October 2019 4 1 1 2 4 6 −2 025.00 [52]
Kerala Blasters 17 June 2021 Present 47 21 9 17 66 58 +8 044.68 [53][54][55]
Total 125 64 22 39 199 143 +56 051.20




Red Star Belgrade



Slovan Bratislava

Kerala Blasters


  1. ^ "Ivan Vukomanovic". ligue1.com. Archived from the original on 4 June 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  2. ^ "OBILIĆ ME DOVEO I NIŠTA ME NISU PITALI: Ivan Vukomanović za MONDO o Arkanu, snovima u Zvezdi i pozivu Mančester sitija". Mondo Portal (in Serbian). Archived from the original on 5 June 2021. Retrieved 5 June 2021.
  3. ^ "Kerala Blasters set to appoint Ivan Vukomanovic as head coach". Khelnow. 4 June 2021. Archived from the original on 4 June 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  4. ^ "Guy LUZON et son staff" (in French). standard.be. 17 June 2013. Archived from the original on 7 April 2017. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  5. ^ "Un nouveau challenge pour Ivan VUKOMANOVIC" (in French). standard.be. 5 November 2014. Archived from the original on 7 April 2017. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  6. ^ "José RIGA" (in French). standard.be. 2 February 2015. Archived from the original on 7 April 2017. Retrieved 6 April 2017.
  7. ^ "ISL: Who is Ivan Vukomanovic - Kerala Blasters' new coach? | Goal.com". www.goal.com. Archived from the original on 9 June 2021. Retrieved 17 June 2021.
  8. ^ "Z Cypru na Balkán. Slovan povedie mladý Srb Ivan Vukomanovič". futbal.pravda.sk (in Slovak). 18 August 2016. Archived from the original on 4 June 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  9. ^ "Slovan dokonal výmenu trénerov: Vukomanovič dostal padáka! Toto je náhrada" (in Slovak). 30 October 2017. Archived from the original on 5 June 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  10. ^ "SRBI NA KIPRU: Vukomanović i Radenković preuzeli Apolon" (in Bosnian). 9 September 2019. Archived from the original on 4 June 2021. Retrieved 4 June 2021.
  11. ^ "Kerala Blasters get new head coach as Serbian Ivan Vukomanovic takes up hot seat". The New Indian Express. Archived from the original on 18 June 2021. Retrieved 17 June 2021.
  12. ^ "Ivan Vukomanovic joins Kerala Blasters FC as the new Head Coach". IFTWC. Retrieved 17 June 2021.
  13. ^ "Durand Cup 2021: Adrian Luna Penalty Ensures Maiden Win for Kerala Blasters on Debut against Indian Navy". News18. 11 September 2021. Retrieved 22 December 2021.
  14. ^ "Indian Super League: ATK Mohun Bagan begin with a bang, beat Kerala Blasters 4-2". www.telegraphindia.com. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  15. ^ Desk, India com Sports. "ISL: Hugo Boumous Stars in ATK Mohun Bagan 4-2 Win Over Kerala Blasters in Season Opener". www.india.com. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  16. ^ "ISL 2021-22: Kerala Blasters beat Odisha FC 2-1". Mathrubhumi. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  17. ^ "We have to stay humble and continue to work hard: Ivan Vukomanovic". Indian Super League. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  18. ^ "Kerala Blasters record first win, beat Odisha FC 2-1". The Indian Express. 5 December 2021. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  19. ^ Bureau, Sports (22 December 2021). "ISL | Clinical Blasters blow away CFC". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  20. ^ Kumar, P. K. Ajith. "ISL 2021-22: Diaz, Sahal and Luna goals guide Kerala Blasters to 3-0 win against Chennaiyin FC". Sportstar. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  21. ^ "ISL 2021-22: Kerala Blasters sweep aside Chennaiyin FC 3-0 to cruise into top-four-Sports News, Firstpost". Firstpost. 22 December 2021. Retrieved 23 December 2021.
  22. ^ "ISL 2021-22: Kerala Blasters end Hyderabad FC's unbeaten run to move top of the table". Olympics.com. Retrieved 11 January 2022.
  23. ^ "ISL 2021-22 Semi-final 2nd Leg Live Score and Updates, Kerala Blasters vs Jamshedpur FC: KBFC 1-1 JFC". News18. 15 March 2022. Retrieved 15 March 2022.
  24. ^ "ISL final: Hyderabad give Kerala the blues". The Indian Express. 21 March 2022. Retrieved 22 March 2022.
  25. ^ "How Karolis Skinkys built Kerala Blasters' indomitable class of '21-22". ESPN. 2 April 2022. Retrieved 20 June 2022.
  26. ^ Desk, The Bridge (4 April 2022). "Ivan Vukomanovic pens extension with Kerala Blasters FC till 2025". thebridge.in. Retrieved 4 April 2022.
  27. ^ "Ivan Vukomanovic extends contract at Kerala Blasters till 2025". Khel Now. 4 April 2022. Retrieved 4 April 2022.
  28. ^ "Kerala Blasters break a pattern by offering contract extension to head coach Vukomanovic". OnManorama. Retrieved 21 April 2022.
  29. ^ "Kerala Blasters FC vs East Bengal FC Live Score Update, Commentary, Scorecard". Indian Super League. Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  30. ^ PTI (28 October 2022). "Mumbai City continue unbeaten run with 2-0 win over Kerala Blasters". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  31. ^ Sportstar, Team (5 November 2022). "ISL 2022-23: Sahal stars as Kerala Blasters beats NorthEast United 3-0". sportstar.thehindu.com. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  32. ^ "ഗോളടിച്ച് ലൂണ, ഡയമെന്റകോസ്, ഇവാൻ; കൊച്ചിയിൽ ഗോവയെ മുക്കി ബ്ലാസ്റ്റേഴ്സ് (3-1)". ManoramaOnline (in Malayalam). Retrieved 13 November 2022.
  33. ^ Aravind, V. S. (19 November 2022). "ISL: Kerala Blasters beats Hyderabad FC 1-0 to end unbeaten streak". sportstar.thehindu.com. Retrieved 19 November 2022.
  34. ^ "ISL: Chennaiyin FC hold Kerala Blasters 1-1". The Times of India. 19 December 2022. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  35. ^ "ബ്ലാസ്റ്റേഴ്സ് വീണു; 'ബർത്ഡേ ബോയ്' സിൽവയുടെ 10–ാം ഗോളിൽ ഈസ്റ്റ് ബംഗാളിന് ജയം (1–0)". ManoramaOnline (in Malayalam). Retrieved 3 February 2023.
  36. ^ "Kerala Blasters beat Chennaiyin, inch closer to playoffs". Hindustan Times. 7 February 2023. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  37. ^ Madhavan, Rahul. "Kerala Blasters vs Chennaiyin FC: Blasters come back from behind to secure three points". www.sportskeeda.com. Retrieved 7 February 2023.
  38. ^ "One small detail made the difference: Kerala Blasters FC's Ivan Vukomanovic". Indian Super League. Retrieved 27 February 2023.
  39. ^ "ISL: Kerala Blasters walk off after controversial Sunil Chhetri freekick; Bengaluru FC in semi-final". The Indian Express. 3 March 2023. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  40. ^ PTI (3 March 2023). "ISL play-off | Kerala Blasters walk off pitch against Bengaluru FC alleging foul play by referee". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  41. ^ "Coach Ivan plays on passion but walkoff is a step too far". ESPN. 4 March 2023. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  42. ^ PTI (3 March 2023). "ISL play-off | Kerala Blasters walk off pitch against Bengaluru FC alleging foul play by referee". The Hindu. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 3 March 2023.
  43. ^ "ISL mum, Kerala Blasters return home to warm welcome". Hindustan Times. 4 March 2023. Retrieved 6 March 2023.
  44. ^ Desk, The Bridge (6 March 2023). "ISL: Kerala Blasters ask for rematch against Bengaluru FC, ban on referee: Reports". thebridge.in. Retrieved 6 March 2023.
  45. ^ "Ivan Vukomanovic gets charge notice, says 'culmination of circumstances' behind walkout". The Times of India. 16 March 2023. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  46. ^ "AIFF may fine Kerala Blasters Rs 5 crore for walkout". The Times of India. 29 March 2023. ISSN 0971-8257. Retrieved 29 March 2023.
  47. ^ "ISL: AIFF fines Kerala Blasters; bans Ivan Vukomanovic". ESPN. 31 March 2023. Retrieved 31 March 2023.
  48. ^ "AIFF Disciplinary Committee fines Kerala Blasters ₹ 4 crore for abandoning ISL tie, coach slapped with 10 match ban". Free Press Journal. Retrieved 31 March 2023.
  49. ^ "Standard Liège » Fixtures & Results 2014/2015". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 16 March 2022.
  50. ^ "Slovan Bratislava » Fixtures & Results 2016/2017". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 16 March 2022.
  51. ^ "Slovan Bratislava » Fixtures & Results 2017/2018". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 16 March 2022.
  52. ^ "Apollon Limassol » Fixtures & Results 2019/2020". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 16 March 2022.
  53. ^ "Durand Cup 2021 Results". flashscore.com. Archived from the original on 15 December 2022. Retrieved 15 December 2022.
  54. ^ "Kerala Blasters » Fixtures & Results 2021/2022". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 25 November 2021.
  55. ^ "Kerala Blasters » Fixtures & Results 2022/2023". worldfootball.net. Retrieved 11 October 2022.
  56. ^ "Girondins de Bordeaux 1998-99". bdfutbol.com. Archived from the original on 21 July 2019. Retrieved 8 January 2020.
  57. ^ "Laxmikanth Kattimani the hero as Hyderabad FC beat Kerala Blasters FC on penalties to win first Hero ISL title". Indian Super League. 20 March 2022. Archived from the original on 22 March 2022. Retrieved 22 March 2022.

External linksEdit