Srpsko narodno vijeće, Serb national council

Vladimir Beara Vladimir Beara
famous Serbs in Croatia

Vladimir Beara – football player

Vladimir Beara was born on 26 August 1928 in Zelovo near Sinj. He started his goalkeeper career in 1946 in the football club Hajduk. He started as a goalkeeper for Hajduk’s senior team in 1947, and by 1950 already celebrated winning the first post-war title of Yugoslavia champion. Beara won national football championship titles in 1952 and in the 1954/55 primary season as a Hajduk team member, with which he played a total of 308 matches.

Beara signed a contract with the football club Crvena zvezda (Red Star) in 1955. He won another four state champion’s titles and participated in winning two Yugoslavia national cups with Red Star. Wearing the Zvezda jersey during the 1959/60 season he won the National Sports Yellow Jersey as the season’s best player. This was the first time in history that a goalkeeper was pronounced the best football player. After Red Star, Beara joins Alemannia Aachen and finishes his goalkeeper career with German Viktoria from Cologne.

Vladimir Beara played 60 matches for the Yugoslavia national team, including the World championship in Brazil in 1951, as well as in Switzerland in 1954 and in Sweden in 1958. He is a silver medal winner at the 1952 Olympic Games in Helsinki, where in the finals he defended penalty by Ferenz Puskas. In 1953 he played for the FIFA team in the Rest of Europe – England match.

In football circles he was called the Great Vladimir, Ballerina with Fists of Steel and Rubber Man. Lav Jašin, a Russian goalkeeper said while receiving an award as best European goalkeeper in 1963: ‘There is someone better and that is Vladimir Beara’.

After finishing his football career, Beara went through additional training and acquired a diploma of a senior coaching expert at the German coach Sepp Herberger’s school. He acted as coach to a dozen clubs in the country and abroad before retiring.

As of 2007 Beara has been an honorary member of the Split Sports Hall of Fame and in 2008 president Stjepan Mesić awarded him with a medal of Croatian Danica with the image of Franjo Bučar. In 2010 he received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the city of Split. Beara died on 11 August 2014 in Split.

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