Mladen Petrić (Croatian pronunciation: [ˈmladɛn ˈpɛːtrit͡ɕ][lacks tonal diacritics]; born 1 January 1981) is a retired Croatian footballer who also holds Swiss citizenship. During his career, he played for Grasshopper, Basel, Borussia Dortmund, Hamburger SV, Fulham, West Ham United and Panathinaikos, as well as internationally for the Croatian national team.
Petrić at practice with Hamburg in 2009
|Full name||Mladen Petrić|
|Date of birth||1 January 1981|
|Place of birth||Brčko, SFR Yugoslavia|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|Playing position||Forward, Striker|
|2013–2014||West Ham United||3||(0)|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only|
- 1 Early life
- 2 Club career
- 3 International career
- 4 Career statistics
- 5 Honours
- 6 References
- 7 External links
Petrić was born in the village of Dubrave near Brčko, Bosnia and Herzegovina, SFR Yugoslavia. Petrić moved with his family to Vinkovci and then later to Neuenhof, Switzerland, where he started to play football at the local club FC Neuenhof before moving to FC Baden and starting his professional career at the club in the summer of 1998. He left Baden after one season and went on to sign with Grasshopper Club Zürich in the summer of 1999.
At club level, Petrić spent five seasons with Grasshoppers before leaving the club for FC Basel in the summer of 2004. He received lots of criticism because of a previous action in which he burned a Basel scarf during the Swiss Champion celebrations of Grasshopper close to one year before leaving Grasshoppers. He was acquired for a transfer fee of €3 million and signed a four-year contract until June 2008. Playing for Grasshopper, he made a total of 114 domestic league appearances and scored 30 goals for the club in the league.
Petrić was fourth-leading goalscorer of the Swiss Super League for the 2005–06 season, scoring 15 goals in 31 matches. In the same season, he appeared for Basel in all of their 12 UEFA Cup matches and scored three goals before the club was eliminated by Middlesbrough in the quarter-finals. He continued to perform well for Basel in the 2006–07 season of the Swiss Super League. In their first-round UEFA Cup game that year, he netted a brace in a 6–2 home victory over Macedonian side FK Rabotnički.
In the final moments of Basel's 2006–07 UEFA Cup group stage match against Nancy on 23 November 2006, Petrić was installed in goal after Basel's goalkeeper Franco Costanzo was sent off for a foul on Nancy's Issiar Dia and the team had already made all three substitutions. The foul resulted in a penalty kick that gave Nancy the final chance for an away victory, but Petrić was able to make a save and stopped the penalty kick taken by Mickaël Chrétien, helping his team to earn a point with a 2–2 draw.
On 11 June 2007, Petrić signed for German Bundesliga team Borussia Dortmund, along with fellow Croatian national team player Robert Kovač, as part of the side's squad rebuilding. While originally being intended to act as a playmaker behind the forwards in a 4–4–2 diamond system, it quickly turned out that he was more effective as a striker up front. He enjoyed a strong start to the season, scoring a brace in Dortmund's 3–0 victory against Werder Bremen. He was one of the league's top scorers in his first season in Germany and also made a notable assistance to his side reaching the DFB-Pokal final in which he scored a stoppage time equaliser against eventual winners and champions Bayern Munich.
On 17 August 2008, Petrić's transfer from Dortmund to Hamburger SV was confirmed by both clubs' official websites as part of a deal that also saw Egyptian international Mohamed Zidan moving in the opposite direction, with both players signing four-year contracts. Dortmund also confirmed they have received an officially undisclosed transfer fee, which was believed to be worth around €5 million.
Petrić made his Bundesliga debut for Hamburg on 23 August 2008 in their 2–1 win at home to Karlsruher SC, coming on as a substitute for Jonathan Pitroipa in the 73rd minute. He scored his first goal for the club on 13 September 2008, netting the winner in their 3–2 win against Bayer Leverkusen. In three consecutive matches in late September and early October 2008, Petrić scored all five goals in Hamburg's 2–0 victories over VfL Bochum in the DFB-Pokal and Unirea Urziceni in the UEFA Cup, as well as their 1–0 victory over Borussia Mönchengladbach in the Bundesliga. On 5 October 2008, he netted a last-minute winner in Hamburg's 2–1 away victory at Energie Cottbus to keep them top of the Bundesliga table. He scored in the Europa League semi-final against Fulham from a free-kick. However crucial the away goal was, Hamburg lost the tie on an aggregate score of 2–1 due to a goalless draw in the first leg in Hamburg. Towards the end of the 2011–12 Bundesliga campaign, it was revealed Petrić would leave Hamburg at the end of the season.
After being released by Hamburg at the end of the 2011–12 campaign, Petrić signed a one-year deal with English Premier League club Fulham, linking up with former Hamburg boss, Martin Jol. The Croatian striker made his debut at home to Norwich City on the opening day of the Premier League campaign, along with fellow new signing Sascha Riether. Petrić scored a double and provided an assist for Alexander Kačaniklić as Fulham beat Norwich by a score of 5–0.
West Ham UnitedEdit
On 10 September 2013, Petrić joined West Ham United on a one-year deal. He made his debut on 21 September 2013 in a 3–2 home defeat by Everton coming on as a 63rd-minute substitute for Modibo Maïga. He made only three further appearances for the club before being released in December 2013.
On 8 January 2014, Greek club Panathinaikos announced the signing of Petrić on a one-and-a-half-year deal with "The Greens."  In Athens, he reunited with his old Hamburg teammate Marcus Berg as well as two of his teammates from the Croatian national team, Danijel Pranjić and Gordon Schildenfeld. On 16 February 2014, Petrić made his debut with the Greek club, coming from the bench against Panthrakikos in Komotini. On 4 May 2014, he scored his first goal for Panathinaikos in a play-off match against PAOK.
On 22 February 2015, he scored against rival club Olympiacos in a 2–1 win. On 7 January 2016, he helped his club to escape with a 2–1 away win by scoring the winning goal against PAS Giannina for the Greek Cup.
On 28 May 2016, he announced his retirement from professional football.
On 12 October 2017, the veteran Croatian international striker has decided to legally demand the €210.000 that Panathinaikos still owe him, almost one and a half years after his official retirement.
In 2001, Petrić was spotted in Switzerland by Mirko Jozić, head coach of the Croatian national team at the time, and made his international debut for Croatia during the team's South Korean tour in November 2001, where they played two friendly matches against the South Korean national team. Petrić appeared in both of the two matches as a second-half substitute, but was subsequently nevertheless not called up to be part of the Croatian squad at the 2002 World Cup finals. He scored his first goal for Croatia in their friendly match against Wales on 21 August 2002 in Varaždin, which ended in a 1–1 draw. He subsequently made his competitive international debut as a second-half substitute in Croatia's opening match of the Euro 2004 qualifying against Estonia, but did not play any international matches at the A-team level for three and half years following this match.
In early 2006, Petrić made his international comeback with Croatia by appearing as a second-half substitute in the team's friendly matches against South Korea at the Carlsberg Cup in Hong Kong and Argentina in Basel. He was eventually omitted from the final 23-man squad for the 2006 World Cup finals, but received a pre-invitation.
In early August 2006, he was called up by Croatia's new coach Slaven Bilić to be part of the team in their friendly match against Italy on 16 August 2006 in Livorno and appeared in the match as a second-half substitute. He was an active member with his national side in their Euro 2008 qualifying campaign, appearing in almost all of the team's qualifying matches. In the second qualifier, against Andorra on 7 October 2006 in Zagreb, he scored four goals in only 60 minutes of playing and became the first ever player to score four goals for Croatia in a competitive match. Croatia won the match 7–0, celebrating their highest competitive victory ever. In the return leg against Andorra on 12 September 2007, he scored twice.
On 21 November, the last day of Euro 2008 qualifiers, Petrić was brought on as a substitute in the away fixture against England. With Croatia already qualified and the match tied at 2–2, he scored the winning goal from about 25 yards from goal to knock England out of qualifying for Euro 2008. It was England's first competitive defeat at the New Wembley. After the match, he refused to swap his jersey, going on to say, "It's the most valuable goal of my career and the best I've scored. I wouldn't swap my kit with any English player because I want to save it for myself."
Because of his impressive qualifying campaign, he was named in Croatia's Euro 2008 squad. Croatia won their first round group, winning all their matches, including a win against later runners-up Germany, but were knocked out by Turkey in the quarter-finals after a penalty shoot-out.
In 2012, he had not played a match for the national team. In February 2013, he played his last international match and scored a goal against South Korea.
|Club performance||League||Cup||League Cup||Continental||Total|
|Switzerland||League||Swiss Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|1998-99||FC Baden||Nationalliga B||22||4||0||0||–||–||22||4|
|1999-00||Grasshopper Club Zürich||Nationalliga A||2||0||0||0||–||0||0||2||0|
|2003-04||Swiss Super League||28||6||4||2||–||4||0||36||8|
|England||League||FA Cup||League Cup||Europe||Total|
|2013–14||West Ham United||3||0||0||0||1||0||–||4||0|
|Greece||League||Kypello Elladas||Super Cup||Europe||Total|
- As of 18 November 2018
|01.||21 August 2002||Stadion Varteks, Varaždin, Croatia||6||Wales||Friendly|
|02.||7 October 2006||Maksimir, Zagreb, Croatia||10||Andorra||Euro 2008 qualifying|
|06.||7 February 2007||Kantrida, Rijeka, Croatia||13||Norway||Friendly|
|07.||12 September 2007||Estadi Comunal, Andorra la Vella, Andorra||18||Andorra||Euro 2008 qualifying|
|09.||21 November 2007||Wembley Stadium, London, England||20||England||Euro 2008 qualifying|
|10.||6 September 2008||Maksimir, Zagreb, Croatia||29||Kazakhstan||2010 World Cup qualifying|
|11.||6 June 2009||Maksimir, Zagreb, Croatia||33||Ukraine||2010 World Cup qualifying|
|12.||3 September 2010||Skonto Stadium, Riga, Latvia||39||Latvia||UEFA Euro 2012 qualifying|
|13.||6 February 2013||Craven Cottage, London, England||45||South Korea||Friendly|
- Grasshopper Club Zürich
- Borussia Dortmund
- "Petric haelt Penalty". YouTube (in German). 23 November 2006. Retrieved 6 August 2011.
- "Petrić the star in Switzerland". UEFA. 30 May 2007.
- "Dortmund brush aside Bremen". UEFA. 14 September 2007.
- "HSV sign Mladen Petric". www.hsv.de. Hamburger SV. 17 August 2008. Archived from the original on 21 August 2008. Retrieved 13 September 2013.
- "BVB Acquires Striker Mohamed Zidan". Borussia Dortmund official website. 17 August 2008. Retrieved 18 August 2008.
- "Hamburg swoop for Petric". Sky Sports. 17 August 2008. Retrieved 18 August 2008.
- "Fulham 2 – 1 Hamburg (agg 2 – 1)". BBC. 28 April 2010. Retrieved 6 August 2011.
- "Luhukay future remains unclear". sportinglife.com. Retrieved 11 May 2012.
- "Fulham snap up Mladen Petric". ESPN Soccernet. 29 June 2012. Retrieved 6 July 2012.
- "Team News: Petric, Riether start for Fulham". Sports Mole. 18 August 2012.
- "Fulham's Mladen Petric kicks off with double against poor Norwich City". The Guardian. 18 August 2012.
- "Summer transfer window: Ins and Outs". Premier League. Retrieved 7 June 2013.
- "Hammers net Petric". West Ham official website. 10 September 2013. Archived from the original on 12 September 2013. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
- "West Ham 2-3 Everton FT". www.whufc.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2014.
- "Games played by Mladen Petrić in 2013/2014". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 1 January 2014.
- "West Ham Release Mladen Petric After Just 3 Months". www.ftbpro.com. Archived from the original on 1 January 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2014.
- Στην Αθήνα για λογαριασμό του Παναθηναϊκού ο «πεινασμένος» Πέτριτς (in Greek). skai.gr. 6 January 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- "Πέτριτς: "Pame Pao!"" (in Greek). onsports.gr. 17 February 2014. Retrieved 9 March 2014.
- Αποτέλεσμα πρόκρισης ο Παναθηναϊκός, 1-2 τον ΠΑΣ Γιάννινα (in Greek). www.sport24.gr. 7 January 2016. Retrieved 7 January 2016.
- "Mladen Petrić oldazi u mirovinu" (in Croatian). index.hr. 28 May 2016. Retrieved 23 June 2016.
- "Panathinaikos still owing 210.000 euros to Mladen Petric". www.sdna.gr. 12 October 2017. Retrieved 12 October 2017.
- "Maestralni Petrić s četiri pogotka odveo Hrvatsku u rekord" (in Croatian). Večernji list. 7 October 2006.
- "England 2-3 Croatia". BBC Sport. 21 November 2007.
- "It's a pleasure to kick England out, says Manchester City's Croatian defender". www.standard.co.uk. 23 November 2007.
- "Mladen Petric". www.thefinalball.com.
- "Mladen Petric". www.fussballdaten.de.
- "Mladen Petrić". Croatian Football Federation.
- "(West) Germany - List of Super/League Cup Finals". 28 November 2018.
- "SWISS TALENT SHAQIRI PICKS UP 3 GOLDEN PLAYER AWARDS". fifpro.org. 7 December 2011.
- "Petrić the star in Switzerland". UEFA. 30 May 2007.