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Šimunić Defends “Za Dom Spremni”

November 29, 2015




Former Croatia international Josip Šimunić, who was capped 103 times for the Vatreni, ended his North American tour this weekend in San Pedro and Los Angeles, as he screened his documentary “Moja Voljena Hrvatska.” The documentary follows Šimunić’s life in soccer from his native Australian upbringing to playing for the Croatian national team, before his international career was ended one fateful night in Zagreb.



Minutes after Croatia qualified for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, defeating Iceland 2-0, Šimunić grabbed the stadium microphone and led the crowd in “Za Dom Spremni” chants at Maksimir. He was ultimately banned by FIFA 10 matches with little to no support coming from the HNS or Croatian government.



Here is what Joe had to say about his actions, if he would take them back and being an Australian-Croat going to play for Croatia.




Ante Kvartuč
Posted By: Ante Kvartuč 45 comments

  1. elcroato says:

    Great interview! What a humble man.

  2. MatesicMethod Soul Champ says:

    @ Ante

    And the legendary line up of interviews at CSR continues …

    Big Joe is all HEART.

    Cautionary tale to know the political score in Croatia.

  3. Rob I says:

    Ante, Ante, Ante

    Good interview, but what about the tackle of the century in Belgrade?????

    I love him for that more than anything else he has done. Sulijmani is still feeling the bruises

  4. MelbCro MelbCro says:

    Really good interview Ante, excellent questions delving into Simunic’s experience as a diaspora Hrvat. well done mate

  5. Hvar says:

    Bravo Ante. Great interview and thank you for bringing this to us. Simunic was always a great player for Croatia. Gave it all. Some of our current players should take note.

  6. nepoznat nepoznat says:

    Hvala i bravo Ante!

  7. Soul Champ Soul Champ says:

    @ Rob I

    That tackle was World Cup saving and then he gets the shaft by the real politik.

    I hope he has a long and successful career as a coach and supports many young players in reaching their potential.

    He is a true sportsman.

    Cannot believe people from our own government sold him out.

    God bless America (hegemonic power #1)
    God save the queen (conquered half the world)

    For home ready
    Za dom spremni

    Simple battle cry to protect Croatian people for centuries from foreign invaders.

    You cannot make this shit up.

    Internal threat to Croatian nation state far more treacherous than any foreign threat.


  8. Doktor Prle says:


  9. Miro says:

    Idiot. All this shit does is put a wedge between Croatians and some of us are tired of it. Being Croatian has nothing to do with ZDS. The country is in shambles because of the inability of those on the right and on the left to put their ridiculous ideology to rest already. It’s time to stop living in the past. Croatia deserves better.

  10. Doktor Prle says:

    The “Left” in Croatia is anything but Croatian. And that WEDGE, that DIVIDE, that RAVINE will always exist.

  11. Doktor Prle says:

    And, good on Mr. Kvartuc, Mr. Svircic & the rest of you CSR people for giving Joe Simunic another media outlet through which he can tell OUR side of the story.


  12. Luka says:

    Za Dom Spremni.

    Svaka ti cast Joe.

  13. Notmy Realname says:

    Well done, Ante!
    The editing was kind of choppy after you mentioned the $5k being raised, what happened there?
    For those of you who live in the diaspora, there’s a reason why most of you who live there think a certain way and the ones that stayed behind think differently. The left in Croatia is predominantly Serb run. HDZ were idiots for the way they crookedly ran the country, because they could’ve stayed in power for centuries if they weren’t do corrupt. Hopefully, this election could police the politicians into finally doing the good job that the nation deserves.
    It’s no big secret in Croatia who was behind the swastika for the Italy game at Poljud. It’s funny how the media claimed that there are no cameras there, even though hundreds of cameras were installed for the ultra music festival that ran prior to the game.

  14. Doktor Prle says:

    Even if we are to consider and accept the faults of HDZ (corruption), those faults do not equal, let alone exceed, the generaational misdeeds, corruption, crimes and theft of the SKH-SDP.

    SKH-SDP has a monopoly on the media, and it always has. And that is why MANY otherwise good folks have drank the Kool-Aid and believe that HDZ is terminally corrupt, while completely overlooking the aforesaid as applied to SKH-SDP.

  15. Maminjo says:

    That new party MOST seemed to give everyone hope, but now three of their members splintered off with Prgomet. Now it’s gotten even more complicated.

  16. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:

    Ante, great interview! One of your best if not THE best.

    Most Croatian media outlets picked up the interview. Take a look at what some of our brothers and sisters are saying under comments:–bio-je-to-najljepsi-nacin-za-zavrsiti-karijeru/859107.aspx


    One of the comments: “nije on ustasa, on je samo glup” = “He’s not ustasa, he is just stupid”


    “Ustasa Simunic won’t let go.” “It is time to remove him from sports forever.”

    Its funny how the serbs don’t give us credit, instead: “video: Youtube”

    “Simunic: proud of fascism”


  17. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:

    Did any of you watch the movie?

    I was a little disappointed.

    -The movie starts with “Jerusalem Films” Just a coincidence?

    -Simunic says that he had full support from his teammates in the movie and in the interview. However, no one came out and said anything in the media.

    -Simunic had multiple Croatian players interviewed in the film and no one said that “Za dom spremni” was ok.

    -Most of the movie was how great Simunic is as a person and that he would never offend anyone.

    I liked how Simunic explained his actions and stood by his actions. I liked how he shined a negative light on the Croatian politicians.

    The movie was mainly about his love for Croatia as diaspora which was great.

    However, I wish that some of the players, coaches, HNS, etc etc would have gone on camera and defended Simunic, not as a “nice person that would never offend anyone” but as a “person that didn’t say anything wrong with Za dom Spremni” like the great Andrew Bogut did.

  18. Mr. Black says:

    Great job, Ante.

    Simunic was a great player for us. I’ll never forget how he stopped Sulejmani in Beograd. Without that action we would have lost in Beograd and ended as worst third in our campaign (and so be eliminated). Croatia went to Brazil thanks to this man!

  19. Iggy Iggy says:

    Nice to see he still has his aussie accent 🙂

    and yeah the tackle in belgrade was legendary stuff alright haha

  20. krk says:

    come on none of these players are able to defend him, you know what will happen to them in Croatia and they know as well, it is unfortunate but that is the political climate in Croatia, a bunch of jugos calling the shot and the rest that support Simunic have to keep quiet or they will probably receive the same treatment as he did, sad but that is the reality

  21. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:


    You make a good point. However, if the team unites and everyone comes on camera and says its ok, then what can they do?

    Joe went through shit because he was a sitting duck all by himself.

  22. T-Bone says:

    Big Joe with the big tackle against Serbia… Right on Mr. BLACK… Was a great player and wore the jersey proudly.

    The fact that
    JOE SIMUNIC chanting za Dom spremni with fans is even an issue given the troubles in the EU is strange and even terrifying in an Orwellian sense. Doesn’t take a genius to figure out what a mess human politics will continue to produce across Europe and the wider globe in the coming months and years.

    Joe’s appeal to mass unity and national pride in an ethnic sense already seems quaint and old fashioned.

  23. Ziva Istina Ziva Istina says:

    As someone who lives the “za dom…..spremni” lifestyle, I salute Suspension Joey. He got screwed.

    His problem moving forward if he wants a coaching career outside of Croatia is going to be the liberal media. No club will hire him because the media will bring this up time after time.

  24. Mishko says:

    @Denis your point really is that everyone else on the team were a bunch of bitches. I was just in Zagreb last month for my mothers funeral and it so happened one of my black t-shirts was a white pride world wide one. My cousin almost shit a loaf, you get arrested for that these days.

    While I admire big Joe and what he did and I think the vast majority of the country is behind him, but just like the rest of the west and the U.S. the leftist communists control the media.

    Nationalism is now considered a bad word, and the Ottoman Empire is now at the gates. History is repeating itself.

  25. Faux Cro says:


    Sorry to hear about your mother.


    I agree about Bogut and Simunic’s NT teammates.

  26. Brkic says:

    I know I’m in the minority here, but I feel the need to state a different perspective.

    The Germans had to give up many long time traditions after WWII. Many of these songs, chants etc were first uttered by people who were no longer living during the time of Hitler, however Hitler’s Germany adopted them and ruined them forever. The Ustasha similarly poisoned the chant “Za Dom Spremni” for most of the world.

    Joe didn’t mean any harm nor do most of his supporters, but the association is strong for many and it will last forever. If so many fans were not giving the heil arm salute in prior matches and while Joe was leading the chant that day then perhaps there would have been more understanding for Joe’s perspective outside of the Croatian community.

  27. Mishko says:

    @Brkic, can you honestly say in this day an age that the right side won the war after seeing what Europe is becoming? To even suggest what Joe said was wrong is treason. I’ve sold all of my guns and I begin construction in April just North of Zagreb, I’m moving back. Za Dom Spremni.

  28. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:


    “everyone else on the team were a bunch of bitches.” Yes.

    “black t-shirts was a white pride world wide” I dont think that someone should be arrested, but I dont think that anyone should wear such a shirt. The same with “brown pride” “black pride” etc etc.

    May your mother rest in peace.


    “Heil Hitler” and “Za Dom Spremni” are not the same.

    Is saying “Heil” illegal in Germany? If so, that would be stupid.

    Now, if Simunic chanted “Za Dom Spremni Poglavnice”, I can understand why some would object.

    The Croatian government has already changed our everyday language because some words were supposedly Serbian and not Croatian. Then, they put up signs in Serbian all over Vukovar.

    The Croatian government says that “Zdravo” is not a proper Croatian greeting. How long have we been praying “Zdravo Maria” ?

    “Za Dom Spremni” = “ready for our homeland”. Nothing more, nothing less. If Hitler said that, if Pavelic said that if Bush said that, if Mickey Mouse said that, who cares?

    This is a form of control by the big powers.

    23 players, coaches, and HNS should unite and make a video that “Za Dom spremni” is ok. Croatian government will arrest all 30+ people or so? If so, the next 30 and then the next 30.

    FIFA will ban us? UEFA will ban us? Tko ih jebe.

    However, flash a couple $$$ in front of our players and their mouths will be shut. They will be singing the U2 song “I will follow.”

    They can make a cartoon about it. Man sitting on the horse, leading the horse with a carrot on a stick. You decide who is the horse.

  29. petitor domovina says:

    Great job on the interview! ZDS

  30. adrian says:

    It’s like the swastika. It’s origins are in hinduism and is a lucky symbol. People don’t care though because they tend to remember horrible shit over friendly symbols.

    We are living in times where we cant offend anyone. Can’t call people fat even though they are morbidly obese.

    I don’t get the white pride shirts. “Fuck you, animals… Human Pride!”

  31. Maminjo says:


    I get where you are coming from, but the association with Za Dom being fascist wasn’t that strong until recently. People were chanting this at all events in the early 2000s, and there wasn’t an issue. It just seems like this is part of some new wave of anti-patriotism in EU countries that goes out of its way to associate anything patriotic with being a fascist.

    It’s the same with the Serbian three-fingered salute. People don’t realize this, but that was originally created from Nazism. Unlike the Za Dom chant, That salute did not exist prior to the 20th century. It’s a very new salute that came about from the World Wars, so there’s even less of a justification to use this salute. But it’s become a symbol of Serbian patriotism (not Nazism) so there’s no need to ban it.

    Also, yes, I also see swastikas all over Buddhist temples. Doesn’t mean we should ban buddhists from using this symbol simply because Hitler expropriated it.

    I personally don’t think Serbs really care about Croats chanting Za Dom Spremni, just as Croats don’t really care about Serbs using the three-fingered salute.

    Right now, Cro is an EU country and will have to adopt the “patriotism equals fascism” mindset and will continue to shame anyone that is too proud of their culture (as the belief is that too much pride with result in xenophobia and racism).
    It’s absurd, but it’s happening.

    The Serbs are off the hook simply because there isn’t a strong anti-patriotic and critical voice in their media yet…but when they one day join the EU, it will happen to them as well.

  32. Colin O'Haravić Colin O'Haravić says:

    One thing I will always remember him by. Absolute legend. All aboard the S Train.

  33. dannyj says:

    great interview

    ya would love to know what he said after the comment about the money being raised

    any how that tackle was soo dirty but needed to be done.. he stepped up cause that is a man who wants to help the team and country not like all the communist rats digging up croatia from the bottom

  34. Cico # 50,000 says:


  35. Bobby V says:

    Thank you Ante. The Croatian diaspora has a great representative in Josip Simunic.

    I may not have been born in Croatia, but, every day, I remind myself who I am and where my family came from. I even think in Croatian.

    Proud of all my fellow diaspora who consider themselves Croatian first.

  36. Keglević says:

    To the Croats, Šimunić is a hero. But to the Serbs, he is a villain for chanting Za Dom Spremni, some sort of battle cry used by the Ustaše, a Croatian revolutionary terrorist organization allied with Nazi Germany and Fascist Italy during WWII (The Ustaše also hate Serbs at that time). After the war ended many of its members surrendered to the Communist Partisans; some fled to other countries. In 1957 the movement’s founder, Ante Pavelić, was slain by a Montenegrin named Blagoje Jovović near Buenos Aires, the Argentine capital.

  37. ARMADA87 says:

    Za dijaspora – spremni

  38. MelbCro MelbCro says:

    Have a look at this Keglević guy thinking he is educating us, as if we don’t know what the Ustasa is or who Ante Pavelic is. Just because you can copy and paste from Wikipedia doesn’t make you clever buddy

  39. Doktor Prle says:

    Ante Pavelic was not slain by Blagoje Jovovic. Ante Pavelic was wounded by an unknown agent of the Yugoslav Secret Police. Pavelic survived the assassination attempt.

    Pavelic would die in Spain in 1959, after having left Argentina.

    By all accounts, Blagoje Jovicic is just another liar among the long lists of liars that are the Servian people.

  40. Notmy Realname says:

    Bravo, Doktore.
    Teach Keglevic some history…

  41. Sude Mi says:

    NK Savski Marof, celebrating their 90th year asked a number of CRO clubs to honour them with a friendly, none even bothered to reply….then on a whim Bayern Munich was asked and agreed….LOL!

  42. Keglević says:

    You guys are damn right! I picked those history lessons on Ustaša from Wikipedia. 😉
    Now, let’s go back to Josip Šimunić.

    Nice hairdo! (In fact a wig)

  43. da truth says:

    @sude mi

    Bayern didn”t agree to the friendly but they did reply and congratulate the team on their 90th anniversary.

  44. tr says:

    LOL, like BM would play a friendly against NK SM.

  45. Mishko says:

    Is there somewhere to watch the entire thing?

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