Edin Dzeko is a Muslim & was born in Sarajevo, capital of Bosnia, on 17 March 1986. He and his family had to cope with the Bosnian war rampaging through the country when he was only six.
“It was a hard time for everyone in the country. There wasn’t much to eat, not really enough for three meals a day. I was very afraid every day. We were always having to hide when shots rang out or bombs fell. You could get shot at any time. I cried a lot in those days. Thank God the war is in the past.”
Dzeko may be unorthodox in playing style, but in other ways he is a typical child of Sarajevo.
“I was six when the war started,” he said. “It was terrible. My house was destroyed so we went to live with my grandparents. The whole family was there, maybe 15 people all staying in an apartment about 35metres square. It was very hard. We were stressed every day in case somebody we knew died.”
Football seemed a world away.
“A lot of footballers start to play kicking a ball around in the street but for me that was impossible, when the war finished I was much stronger, mentally. After the war I played with my friends in the streets, at school, then my father took me to Zeljeznicar.”
Their stadium lay on the frontline and when the siege was finally lifted, the first thing players and officials had to do was to clear the pitch of mines.
That experience should help him settle in Moss Side.
Edin (pronounced Eid-in) has just signed for the Arabs at Manchester City (booo) for a whopping £35 million, where he joins fellow Muslim footballers, brothers Habib “Kolo” and Yahya Toure.
58 goals and 31 assists over the past two and a half seasons suggests, he can finish and create.
To go from wartorn Bosnia to the most expensive player in British history takes some doing.
The Akh wishes you had been signed by Liverpool…how we can do with another striker to help Fernando Torres.