Edin Dzeko is one of the best strikers who has been on the football scene for a long time. Dzeko has shown countless times how great a player he is, but there are few who know that Dzeko grew up in Sarajevo, where at that time 329 grenades fell on average every day.
The city was under siege, but that didn't stop Dzeko from playing football with his friends. Some of them failed to survive the siege of the city, but fortunately, Dzeko was one of those who survived and made a football career.
In a story for PlayerTribune, he tried to describe what it all looked like: "There is a special pride in making it to the Premier League and becoming a champion when you come from where we come from. You have to remember that I was born in Sarajevo in the ’80s."
"During the war, there were times when I had to stop playing football games in the streets because the sirens went off, and we’d have to hide. "As a little kid, you don’t really understand the danger.
At six years old, I didn’t know what was going on, but honestly I didn’t think much about it. The parents do all the thinking and worrying." "They’re the ones who carry a lot of the burden, I think.
Without my parents, my life would not be possible. When the war finally stopped four years later, everything was destroyed." "There was no city left. I remember my father taking me to my first training at Željezničar, and we had to take two different buses and a tram."
His father was with him even in the most difficult moments and supported him, but the situation was not easy at all. "It was more than an hour to get there, and we were training at a high school because the club stadium had been destroyed.
Even though my dad was working, he would lead me there every day, and when training was over he would always bring me a banana." "Even in the bad times, they tried to give me and my sister everything." "Everyone has dreams.
But in those times when the country was being rebuilt, it was impossible to think about something more. I just remember being happy that I could play real football for the first time without sirens or danger or anything."
"No complications. Just football."
Dzeko's biggest dream
His biggest dream was to play for one of the most popular clubs in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and that is FK Zeljeznicar. Dzeko described what a call to the first team looked like "If I had a dream, it was to play for the Željezničar senior team.
It was mostly to make my father proud, because he never went professional, but he played all his life." "I remember when I was 17 years old, I was with him in the local shopping center. Normal day. I can’t remember what we were buying.
Suddenly, the call comes in from one of my coaches. He says, “Tomorrow, you’re going with the first team to the preseason”. I turn around and tell my Dad, and he’s completely baffled. He’s like, “Who? Why? When? With who? What ???? ” Dzeko couldn't even imagine how great his career would be, because the conditions in which he grew up were really catastrophic.
"That was a great moment for me, to be able to experience that with him, because he was with me from the first step. Really, every step to training after the war, we took together." "I did not expect that I would ever get to play in Germany and England and especially in Italy.
For me, in those days, Serie A was the ultimate level. In the ’90s, you had so many great players in Italy, and I really loved Shevchenko especially." "When I was a kid, one of my youth coaches would call me “Shevchenko,” and he said it was because of my face.
But I loved it." "He was my hero." Edin Dzeko is the captain of the BiH national team, and is considered one of the greatest football players in the Balkans