Saturday, September 17, 2011

Bojan Krkic

Bojan Krkić Pérez (Serbian: Бојан Кркић Перез; pronounced Boyan Krkich Perez; born 28 August 1990, in Linyola, Lleida, Catalonia) often known as just Bojan, is a Spanish footballer who currently plays as a forward or winger for Italian Serie A club Roma.Bojan Krkić Pérez was born to a Serbian father (Bojan Krkić Sr.) who was a professional footballer for the Serbian side Red Star Belgrade and a Catalan mother (Maria Lluïsa Pérez) He played for FC Barcelona's youth teams from 1999 to 2006. A quick striker with quite notable dribbling skills, it was reported that he scored more than 1900 goals for the youth teams in five and a half years. He then played the 2006–07 season with the FC Barcelona B team until he signed a professional contract with the Barcelona A team upon turning 17. Bojan played his first match with Barcelona on 24 April 2007, scoring a goal in a friendly match against Egyptian giants Al-Ahly.
On 16 September 2007 (at 17 years and 19 days), Bojan made his official debut for Barcelona against CA Osasuna, replacing Giovani dos Santos in the 78th minute and breaking Lionel Messi's record of the youngest Barcelona player to feature in a La Liga match. Three days later, he made his UEFA Champions League debut against Olympique Lyonnais, coming on at the 88th minute for Messi. He was, at the time, the youngest Barcelona player ever to feature in a Champions League game, at 17 years and 22 days. He made his second Champions League appearance on 2 October, coming on at the 81st minute for Ronaldinho against VfB Stuttgart. On 20 October 2007 (at 17 years and 53 days), Bojan made his first league start for Barcelona away to Villarreal CF and scored in the 25th minute. It was his first goal for the club's first team and it made him the youngest ever goalscorer for Barcelona in a league match.
Bojan scored his first ever Champions League goal on 1 April 2008 (at 17 years and 217 days) against Schalke 04, netting the only goal in the first (away) leg of the quarter-finals, making him the first person born in the 1990s to score in the Champions League and the second youngest player ever, behind Ghanaian forward Peter Ofori-Quaye, then playing for Olympiacos, who scored at the age of 17 years and 195 days. Bojan finished the season with a record of 10 goals, breaking Raúl's record of most goals scored in a debut season.
Upon the departure of Gianluca Zambrotta, Bojan was handed the number 11 shirt. After 14 games (13 of which he entered as a substitute), Bojan ended a goal drought by netting a brace against UD Almería in a 2-0 victory. Despite featuring less compared to the previous season, Bojan helped Barcelona to their 19th La Liga title. He also aided Barcelona to their first Copa del Rey win in 11 years by scoring five goals in the competition, including one in the final against Athletic Bilbao. Bojan was an unused substitute in the 2009 UEFA Champions League Final against Manchester United, which Barcelona won 2-0 and saw them cap off a treble-winning campaign. Bojan's three goals in ten appearances throughout the competition saw him finish as the equal sixth highest goalscorer for the season.
On the first day of the La Liga campaign against Sporting de Gijón, Bojan scored a header in the 18th minute courtesy of a flick from Seydou Keita. Barcelona went on to win the game by a scoreline of 3-0. On 10 November, he scored twice in the second leg of the Copa del Rey against Cultural Leonesa, helping his team to a 5-0 victory. Coming off the bench as a late substitute for Andrés Iniesta, Bojan scored his first and only Champions League goal of the season against VfB Stuttgart. He began finding the net more often towards the end of the season; 7 of his 8 league goals for the season came from the last 12 games.
Bojan took number 9 shirt after Zlatan Ibrahimović moved on loan to A.C. Milan. The season saw Bojan found himself behind Lionel Messi, Pedro Rodríguez and David Villa in the pecking order. In the match against AD Ceuta in the Copa del Rey, Bojan captained Barcelona for the first time in an official match. He came off of the bench against UD Almería to score the sixth and eighth goal in an 8-0 win and later came on against Real Madrid in the El Clásico to set up the fifth goal in a 5-0 win for Jeffrén Suárez. In a La Liga match against Real Sociedad, Bojan again came off the bench to score the fifth goal in 5-0 win. He scored a crucial league goal from a Daniel Alves assist for Barcelona against Sevilla in a 1-1 draw. He marked his 100th league appearance for the Catalan club with a goal against Getafe CF.
Bojan shot to prominence as a 15-year-old at the UEFA European Under-17 Championship in Luxembourg in May 2006 when he was joint top-scorer. He achieved this despite being a year younger than most of the other players in the tournament and only playing 40 minutes in four out of five of Spain Under-17's matches. He scored a hat-trick against Luxembourg, before inspiring his side to a 3–0 victory over the eventual champions Russia, with all of the goals of the game being scored with him on the pitch as a second half substitute. In the third match of the tournament, he scored a penalty after once again being introduced at half time. He started the semi-final against the Czech Republic but, after his team-mate Roberto García was sent off, Spain struggled and lost 2–0 in a shock result. In the third-place play-off, Bojan was once again a second half sub and scored the opener in the 53rd minute. When the match went to penalties, he scored and Spain won 5–4 to finish third. In the 2007 European Under-17 Football Championship, Bojan led Spain to victory scoring the only goal against England in the final. He also scored in the semi-final against Belgium.

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