The president of the FA of Belgrade and the Expert Board of the FSS, Ilija Petković (1945 – 2020), passed away today at the age of 75, after a short and severe illness. In Serbian football, he achieved himself as an exceptional football player, top coach and outstanding sports worker.
Petković started his playing career in the Knin team Dinara, and at the age of 19 he came to Belgrade where he became a player of OFK Beograd, for which he played a total of 16 seasons and won the Yugoslav Cup, and then played for French Troyes for another three years. He played for the national team of Yugoslavia from 1968 to 1974, and in that period he played 43 times and scored six goals and was part of the team that became the runner-up of Europe in 1968.
Petković was a coach in the staff of the youth national team of Yugoslavia, which became the world champion in Chile in 1987, and during 1997 and 1998 he was a coach in the staff of the national team then led by Slobodan Santrač. He was the Manager of the national team on two occasions: the first time he worked from July 2000 to February 2001, and the second time from July 2003 to July 2006. Then he managed to take the national team of Serbia and Montenegro to the World Cup, and during 10 qualifying matches, no defeats were recorded and only one goal was conceded.
FK Vojvodina expresses its sincere and deep condolences to the family of Ilija Petković, his friends, associates, the Football Association of Serbia, the Football Association of Belgrade, all clubs in which he left his mark as a player or coach, as well as the entire football Serbia.