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Getting To Know: Bojan Krkić

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Full name: Bojan Krkić Pérez
Squad No: 9
Position: Striker
Date of birth: 28 August 1990
Place of birth: Linyola, Spain
Height: 1.70 m (5 ft 7 in)
Weight: 65 kg (143 lbs)

Bojan was born to a Serbian father and a Catalan mother in the small town of Linyola, located in the western part of Catalonia. He joined Barcelona's academy at the age of nine and quickly progressed through the youth ranks. In the seven years he spent in the youth teams he reportedly scored over 800 goals. In the 2006-07 season his immense talents caught the eye of then Barcelona B manager Quique Costas and he called him up in the middle of the season. In just 22 games, against players much older than him, he scored 10 goals and ended the season as the teams leading scorer.

As soon as the youngster became eligible for a professional contract he signed with the team and immediately joined the first squad. He made his debut on 16 September 2007 as a substitute in a game against Osasuna and at 17 years 19 days became the youngest Barcelona player to participate in a La Liga game, breaking Lionel Messi's record. Three days later he played in his first Champions League game and yet again broke one of Messi's records, for the youngest Barcelona player to play in a European competition.

In the same season he went on to brake two more Messi's records, for youngest Barcelona player to score in a league match and for the youngest player to score a goal for Barcelona in a European competition. The goal in the Champions League came against Schalke and at 17 years 217 days he became the second youngest ever to score in the competition. He finished his first season with 10 goals in the league, breaking Raul's record for most goals scored in a debut season.

The next season started with a coaching change and Bojan was featured much less than he was used to under coach Rijkaard and since then he has been struggling to earn a regular starting spot on the team, but as he is only 20 years old he figures to have an exciting future ahead of him. In four seasons for the first team he has appeared in 155 games and scored 38 times. Additionally, he has 22 appearances and 10 goals for the Barcelona B team.

Bojan entered international football with Spain's underage teams and was an integral part of the U-17 team that won the European championship and finished second in the World Cup. As a citizen of Serbia (he has dual citizenship) he was later offered a place in the Antić led senior Serbian team be he declined and added he only wishes to play for La Furia Roja. His wish came true on 10 September 2008 when Vicente del Bosque gave him the opportunity as a substitute, but since then he has not been called upon.

Profile
Bojan is a very fast, agile striker that is also comfortable playing on either wing. Throughout his young career he has been facing defenders much older that him and he has shown numerous times he has the ability to beat any defender that stands in his way. He also owns a fine finishing touch and excellent vision to find teammates. Bojan has been struggling with consistency as he often gets frustrated if he misses a couple of opportunities and he also isn't much of a threat in the air because he lacks the size and strength to do so.

Honors
Barcelona

  • La Liga (2): 2008-09, 2009-10

  • Copa del Rey (1): 2008-09

  • Supercopa de España (2): 2009, 2010

  • UEFA Champions League (1): 2008-09

  • UEFA Super Cup (1): 2009

  • FIFA Club World Cup (1): 2009

Spain

  • UEFA U-17 Championship (1): 2007

Individual

  • Don Balón Award (1): 2008

In December 2010 Bojan confirmed he wants to play for Blaugrana and signed a contract extension that will keep him with the club until 2015.

Next week we take a look at the Lionel Messi.

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