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Yksel Osmanovski

Personal information
Date of birthFebruary 24, 1977(age 39)
Place of birthMalmö, Sweden
Height1.73 m
Playing positionWinger, Striker
Club information
Current clubRetired

     Home | Football | Yksel Osmanovski

Yksel Osmanovski (Macedonian Cyrillic: Иксел Османовски, Iksel Osmanovski) (born February 24, 1977 in Skrävlinge, Malmö) is a former Swedish football forward.

His parents originate from the region of Prespa Lake, Republic of Macedonia and he is of Turkish descent. He is the first Muslim to represent Sweden in football. He has played 14 international matches for the Sweden national team, and was a squad player for the Euro 2000. He played for Malmö BI and IFK Malmö as a child, but joined Malmö FF in 1987 where he eventually made his debut in 1995. He gradually became a star in the Swedish league, and was bought by Italian Serie A outfit AS Bari. After three seasons he moved on to Torino Calcio, but struggled to capture a first team place. He therefore returned to Malmö FF in 2004 after a stint at Bordeaux. There he was part of the team that won the Allsvenskan championship, although Osmanovski himself did not receive a winner's medal, because he took part in too few matches. Still he played the crucial role, in stopping a ball on the goal line against title rivals Halmstad BK. Had it gone in, Malmö would certainly not won the championship, but thanks to the 2-2 scoreline they kept themselves within a shot.

Yksel grew up in Rosengård, where fellow Swedish soccer star Zlatan Ibrahimović also grew up. In an early interview, Zlatan said that "within a few years, I will play in Italy, and eventually the national team. I want to follow in Yksel's footsteps. We know each other, even if he is four years older than me. I got his autograph when he started playing for Malmö FF, when I played in Malmö BI. When he came to Rosengård and played and dribbled with us kids, we were all shouting "Yksel, Yksel, Yksel!" - Ibrahimović, in 2000

In February 2008, Yksel announced his retirement from professional soccer, having not had his contract with Malmö renewed.

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