Zlatan "Zlatko" Saračević (born 5 July 1961) is a Croatian former handball player who competed in the 1988 Summer Olympics for SFR Yugoslavia and in the 1996 Summer Olympics for Croatia. He is currently coaching RK Podravka.
Saračević (left) during the 2009 World Championship.
|Full name||Zlatan Saračević|
5 July 1961|
Banja Luka, FPR Yugoslavia
|Playing position||Left back|
|Current club||RK Podravka (manager)|
|Borac Banja Luka|
|Borac Banja Luka|
|Badel 1862 Zagreb|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|RK Zagreb (assistant)|
|RK Zagreb (interim)|
Product of the prolific youth academy RK Borac Banja Luka, he was one of the greater Yugoslavian players of the early 80s, whose junior team won the world junior championship, defeating the then invincible Soviet Union in the final. With the Yugoslav national team he would win the 1986 World Championship.
In 1988 he was part of the Yugoslav team which won the bronze medal. He played all six matches and scored nine goals.
He played for ten years in RK Borac Banja Luka winning the league and cup once. In 1987 he moved to RK Medveščak from Zagreb. During his three-year stay with the club he won the Yugoslav Cup in 1989 and 1990. After his stint in RK Medveščak he moved to France where he played for seven years in Nîmes, Bordeaux, Créteil and Istres. He won the French First League two times and was the league's top goalscorer three time.
In 1997 he moved to Croatian side Badel 1862 Zagreb. At the club he won during his three-year stay he won all league and cup titles. He also reached the EHF Champions League final twice and the semi-final once. He was also the top goalscorer in the EHF Champions League during his last two seasons.
In 2000 he moved to Fotex Veszprém where he played for two seasons winning league and cup titles while reaching the EHF Champions League final. In 2002 he moved to Zamet Crotek where he finished his playing career and started his coaching career.
While playing for Zamet in an EHF Cup match against Lukoil Dinamo Astrakhan Saračević provoked a fight during the match, all of the players and fans fought against the Russian players. Saračević got a one-year ban from playing handball in European competitions and Zamet Crotek where fined and lost the match 10:0. Saračević retired at the end of the 2002–03 season at RK Zamet Crotek.
With the Croatian national team Saračević won a bronze medal at the 1994 European Championship, a silver medal at the 1995 World Championship and gold medals at the 1993 Mediterranean Games and 1996 Summer Olympics. At the Olympics he played six matches including the final and scored 16 goals.
During the rest of the 2002–03 season he was a player-coach in some matches. At the end of the season Zamet finished in fifth place while reaching the semi-final of the Croatian Cup. Failing to qualify in the EHF Cup and a bad league position in the new season force the boards hand to sack Saračević on 22 March 2004.
On 19 March 2016 he was named as coach of Dubrovnik.
From April 2017 to February 2018, he was in the Croatia national team staff of head coach Lino Červar.
On 14 June 2018 he was named as the head coach of RK Podravka, Croatian women's club.
- Borac Banja Luka
- Yugoslav Cup (2): 1989, 1990
- USAM Nîmes
- French First League (2): 1990–91, 1992–93
- Badel 1862 Zagreb
- Croatian First League (3): 1997–98, 1998–99, 1999-00
- Croatian Cup (3): 1998, 1999, 2000
- EHF Champions League Runner-up (2): 1998, 1999
- Hungarian First League (2): 2000–01, 2001–02
- Hungarian Cup (1): 2002
- EHF Champions League Runner-up (1): 2002
- EHF Champions Trophy Runner-up (1): 2002
- 1990-91 Division 1 top goalscorer
- 1992-93 Division 1 top goalscorer
- 1993-94 Division 1 top goalscorer
- Franjo Bučar State Award for Sport - 1996
- 1998–99 EHF Champions League top goalscorer - 90 goals
- Best Croatian handballer of 1999 by CHF & Sportske novosti
- 1999-2000 EHF Champions League top goalscorer - 92 goals
- Best Croatian handballer of 2002 by CHF & Sportske novosti
- "Igrači Zlatko Saračević". web.archive.org/web (in Croatian).
- "'I ja sam sada postao navijač...' Brkić: 'I ja sam odavno'" (in Croatian). jutarnji.hr.
- "Saračević se prisjetio 1987.: Bili smo jedini Hrvati u momčadi" (in Croatian). Večernji.hr.
- "Zlatko Saračević, bivši rukometni as za Glas Srpske: Borac, ajvar i ćevapi brend Banjaluke" (in Serbian). glassrpske.
- "Le palmarès" (in French). usam-nimesgard.
- "Bozidar Jovic Zágrábban készül" (in Hungarian). nemzetisport.hu.
- "Handball club LUKoil-Dynamo demands to punish organizers of Croatia match". pravdareport.com.
- "Saračević postao trener drugoligaša Dubrovnika" (in Croatian). večenji.hr.
- "ODLUKU KOJOM SE ODLIKUJU REDOM DANICE HRVATSKE S LIKOM FRANJE BUČARA" (in Croatian). hrvatska.poslovniforum.hr.