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Brane Oblak Biography
Branko Oblak (born on May 27, 1947 in Ljubljana, Slovenia) is a Slovene football player and coach.

Brane, as he is often known by his nickname, started playing football at the youth team of Svoboda Ljubljana. In 1965 he went to Ljubljana's more famous club, Olimpija. His debut for this team was on May 20, 1966 in Belgrade where "Brane" scored both Olimpija's goals against Partizan to win 2:1. He stayed with Olimpija until 1973. During that time he played 181 matches and scored 33 goals.

In 1973 he moved to Hajduk Split and stayed there for two seasons. In both seasons Hajduk won national champion and cup winner titles. In 1975 he signed for German club Schalke 04 Gelsenkirchen for two seasons. In his second season there, 1976/77, Schalke 04 was a Bundesliga vice champion. In 1977 Branko went to Bayern Munich. He stayed there for three seasons, in his final season there (1979/80) Bayern won a German champion title. Then he played "for soul" in various Austrian amateur clubs till 1987 when he retired as a football player.

Branko's debut for Yugoslav national team was a friendly match against Romania in 1971. Next year, 1972, he was honoured to play at Pelé's farewell match in Rio de Janeiro. At the 1974 World Cup in Germany he was together with his team mate Danilo Popivoda the first Slovenian to play at a World Cup but even more than this he will remeber it for being selected into the best squad of this World Cup. In 1976 he played with Yugoslav national team at the European Championship in Yugoslavia. His excellent pass for the first goal in a semi final match against Germany is still remebered among football experts. After this European Championship he quitted playing for the national team. In altogether 46 matches he scored 6 goals.

After "retirement" as a fottball player he started training at various Slovenian clubs, incl. twice at Olimpija Ljubljana. He proved to be a good coach to work with youth teams so in February 2004 he was chosen to be a Slovenian U21 national coach. He didn't do this job for a long time. In May 2004 Slovenian national team head coach Bojan Prašnikar was fired due to bad results and on May 24 Branko was chosen to replace him.

In 2003 UEFA member football associations organized surveys to find the best national players in 50 year period of existance of UEFA. In Slovenia Branko Oblak was awarded this title, "beating" such rivals as Srečko Katanec or Zlatko Zahovič.
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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article Brane Oblak.