June 23, 2024
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Tehran Times – ZAGREB, Miroslav “Ciro” Blazevic lost his battle with prostate cancer on Wednesday, two days before his 88th birthday.

His family and friends said Blazevic died at a Zagreb hospital.

The “coach of all coaches,” as he was known in his home country of Croatia, led four national teams and several domestic and foreign clubs during his career.

He led Croatia to a third place finish at the 1998 World Cup.

He took charge of Iran coach midway through the 2002 World Cup qualification process but failed to book a place in the Finals after losing to Ireland Republic 2-1 on aggregate. The defeat that marked the end of Blazevic’s time in Iran as his assistant Branko Ivankovic took over.

Ivankovic, his disciple, won a gold medal with Iran U23 in the 2002 Asian Games and claimed a bronze with Team Melli in the 2004 AFC Asian Cup.

Legendary Blazevic introduced new players to Iran football such as Rahman Rezaei, Javad Nekounam, and Ebrahim Mirzapour.

May he rest in peace.