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Name Bojan Krkic
Gender Male
Ethnic Spanish
Job Spanish Footballer
Desc Best known to English football fans thanks to his goals for Stoke City, Bojan Krkic broke Lionel Messi’s record for Barcelona’s youngest debutant in 2007, earning him instant comparisons to the Argentine forward. He played over 100 La Liga games for Barca before moving on to Roma, AC Milan, Ajax and Stoke. In 2018, he revealed that the ‘new Messi’ nickname held him back and that he rejected a chance to go to Euro 2008 with Spain because of anxiety issues


Org Spain National Team
Club as Player Montreal Impact
  Stoke City
  Barcelona FC

2013 08 24 Retrieve

[Bojan on life in Amsterdam and with Ajax] It’s a great city on many levels. It has a very distinctive culture and a new philosophy, which I’m learning. They know what they want here and they are very well organised. Working on a daily basis with people like Bergkamp, Stam or Frank de Boer is fantastic. My spirits are lifting again because I feel like a key part of the team. I feel very happy. Every team wants to play good football and has young players. They don’t go out to defend. That makes football fun in Holland. People aren’t arrogant here either. Footballers are much more modest and are very positive. The league itself is very appealing

2015 12 12 Retrieve

[Stoke City’s Bojan Krkic following his side’s impressive 2-0 home win over Manchester City] Imagine if we play Champions League football at the Britannia Stadium in five years. It can happen. If you can say five years ago you would not imagine me to be here…Who knows? Next year? Two, three, four years? Each player has to do their best to make these ideas come true

2016 03 09 Retrieve

[on Francesco Totti] Totti has impressed me most about Roma. He has been, and remains, a very important player, who has spent many years here. The other day he explained that he joined the club in 1989 and is now 35 – he arrived before I was born!

2018 05 19 Retrieve

[Bojan Krkic opens up on his anxiety attacks as a teenager that stopped him from going to UEFA EURO 2008 with Spain] There was a pressure here [signalling his head], powerful, never going away. I was fine when I went into the dressing room for the France game but I started to feel this powerful dizziness, overwhelmed, panicked, and they lay me on the physio’s bench. That was the first time but I had nasty episodes like that again. There’s medicine, psychological treatment to overcome the barriers you’ve erected, the fear. It started in February and it lasted until the summer. When the Euros came I decided I couldn’t go, that I had to isolate myself

2019 08 06 Retrieve

[Former Barcelona forward Bojan Krkic has left Stoke City by mutual consent] The club would like to take this opportunity to thank Bojan for his efforts over the past five years and wish him every success for the future

: 2019 08 08 Montreal Impact made headlines by signing former Barcelona midfielder Bojan Krkic​ from Stoke City.

2019 12 12 Retrieve

[How Bojan Krkic overcame anxiety attacks to become his own man] In the end, I know my qualities and I know I’m not Messi. I’m Bojan. If people want to say ‘This guy was not the new Messi’, okay, yeah I was not the new Messi.

At 17, my life changed entirely. I went to the Under-17 World Cup in July and no one knew me; when I came back, I couldn’t even walk down the road. It was all good but your head fills until there’s a moment that your body says ‘stop’.

[while getting ready for the match, he was overcome by anxiety] I was fine when I went into the dressing room but I started to feel this powerful dizziness, overwhelmed, panicked, and they lay me on the physio’s bench. That was the first time but I had nasty episodes like that again

[Spain national team coach Luis Aragones wanted to call Bojan up for the 2008 European Championship – a tournament La Roja ultimately won] When the Euros came I decided I couldn’t go, that I had to isolate myself. Everyone at the federation knew [about my anxiety]: Luis Aragonés and Fernando Hierro [the sporting director]. Hierro sent me messages every week to ask how I was and the day before the squad was announced, they rang. ‘Bojan, we’re going to call you up’. I was in the car, going to training. I said: ‘It hurts to say this but I can’t.’ The next day I saw a headline: ‘Spain call up Bojan and Bojan says no’. That headline kills me, it’s as if I don’t care. What hurt was that the headline presumably came from the Federation

[Deep down, Bojan knew that the only way to secure regular first-team football was to move away from Camp Nou] It would have been easy to stay at Barcelona and not play but I needed to go. Maybe at times I should have been more patient but I’ve always been honest making decisions [to move]. I always wanted to play

[Bojan is plying his trade with Montreal Impact in the MLS] The most important thing isn’t the trophies, it’s the experiences, what you lived, what’s here in your heart, what you know, what you live. I love football and no one will ever take that from me. I’m proud of my career, proud of what I have lived, and even if there are hard moments, you have to be strong

2020 01 20 Retrieve

[Bojan embraces all that has led to him to MLS and Thierry Henry reunion] I see it different. Everything now is different from what I had when I was 17 years old. All of the bad things [that have happened], they are not bad things. It’s helping you to do big steps to grow. I learned a lot from all of those steps that I did. I’m really happy to have lived those mistakes because now I am who I am

[Bojan said of Henry] It’s difficult to see when you play with someone. But he’s someone that I always had respect for as a player and, for me, as a young player when I started with him, I tried to always be with him in the dressing room, to listen to what he had to say. It’s good to have him

The important thing for the players when sometimes we don’t play, we say, ‘It’s the coach! The coach is not playing me!’ But I think if we think about ourselves, you need to help your coach, especially now at the beginning of preseason. In my case with Thierry, I will not think about Thierry. I will think about me being in good condition physically, doing good things to play good and then Thierry can help me to grow and play better. I know that if I give this to him, he can help me

Sometimes you think about football and most of the time you think about personal life. To come away from your town, from your home, sometimes it’s not easy to make that decision, but when you do it and you do this step, it helps you to grow as a man. I’m very happy with the decision I made in August to come to Montreal and play football in Montreal in this league. From the first day when I came to Montreal, I felt that it was a special city, a nice city with nice people. I’m happy to be there

2020 01 21 Retrieve

[Bojan Krkic comments on Chicharito’s decision move to MLS] It’s difficult to judge these types of decisions. The ones that are criticizing the move, it’s his decision. Everyone is going to do the same. Chicharito is one player that he is doing a really nice career in Europe. He’s played with a lot of teams. When we decide to do a step forward, it’s not only professional. It’s personal, not just professional, because we are humans. If he decided to come here, they need to respect that. He’s coming to a league and we are saying this league is competitive and every year it’s more competitive and more important. It’s going to be a good move for him, for the league. We have big players, important players, that have a lot of experience to share. He’ll help his team to be more important

2020 03 25 Retrieve

[Bojan Krkic says I’m Convinced Eriksen Will Do Very Well At Inter] I arrived at Ajax in 2013 and shortly thereafter he moved on to Tottenham. In the Premier League, when I was at Stoke City, I played against him several times. We are talking about someone who has pure talent but he still has to fit in and it is not easy to do that in Italy. Give him a little time and I am convinced that he will do very well

2020 04 19 Retrieve

[Former Barcelona forward Bojan Krkic believes that it is only a matter of time before his old team-mate Xavi ends up as head coach of Barca] Xavi is a person who sooner or later has to be part of the club. I like when people who came through the club end up at Barca and Xavi is one of them

Few are better than him as he knows the place, knows the dressing room – few people will be able to experience it like him. I think both Barcelona and Xavi are destined for each other

[the one man Bojan is likely to be asked about above any others is the current Camp Nou captain, Lionel Messi, who continues to break records and win titles at the age of 32] It’s something that everyone really admires. I don’t like comparisons in the world of football, but there are regular players and there are players at a very high level and Leo is one of them

What makes the difference is the number of years he’s been competing at that level. Getting to the top is not as difficult as staying there – especially at the level Leo is at. The expectations that he generates every day is practically inhuman. Very few can do what Leo does

2020 05 02 Retrieve

[Bojan Krkic says Barcelona need to stop ‘improvising’ in the transfer market] Barca have a plan. Or they had one. And I urge them to return to it. Real Madrid have always been characterised as a club that sells well, while at Camp Nou the holy sign of our colours, which makes us great, has been La Masia. Without our way of being, we would never have enjoyed Messi, Xavi or Iniesta, among many others. Those three players don’t just figure in privileged positions in the history of Barcelona, but also form part of football’s history. The three were all on the Ballon d’Or podium in 2010, screaming to the world that we are unique and that, being unique, we are ourselves. And that doesn’t mean no signings from outside. Signings like Trincao are strategic, beyond the price, but as long there is a plan with what to do with him. After playing for Braga, does he have a place guaranteed in Quique Setien’s squad? Will Barca look for a loan? Those answers must be given by those running the club at the moment. And the feeling is that there are no answers. What are we doing with Riqui Puig? Will Ansu Fati continue with the first team? Barca cannot improvise with such important decisions. And that goes for the management of the U19s and the B team. Signing Braithwaite when Luis Suarez got injured, as was the case with signing Maxi Lopez after [Samuel Eto’o](samuel-eto-o.html) got injured, is improvising. It is betraying the plan that has made us great. It’s urgent that we get back to believing in ourselves. Only that way will we continue to be ourselves

2020 05 08 Retrieve

[Bojan Krkic believes Barcelona would be better off signing Liverpool forward Roberto Firmino than Argentinian target Lautaro Martinez] Inter don’t usually take the initiative and that makes me think that Lautaro could occupy an area at Barca that is naturally not his. [That is] something that would certainly be a shame. If you allow me a name, I would bet more on Firmino: a link player, with a lot of presence and great mobility. I do not intend that this reflection be interpreted as a refusal to sign the Argentine, but I understand that his profile must be analysed very well because it would be unforgivable that, as happened with Griezmann, we sign a striker to put him on the wing and then complain that it doesn’t work. That cannot happen again because, although it seems obvious, a nine is a nine. That is his natural habitat and to move him from there is to waste his talent. If Barca need a nine, sign him, but do it to really use him