the tanner ba'

What is it with Ross County F.C. and the Balkan Peninsula?!


Currently on the Ross County F.C. roster:

  • Mihael Kovacevic:  Swiss of Croatian descent.
  • Branislav Micic:  Swiss of Serbian descent.
  • Orhan Mustafi:  Swiss of Albanian and Macedonian descent.

Last year there was also Evanelos Oikonomu, who was Greek.

Today brings news that County are after another player with Balkan roots- free agent* midfielder Labinot Harbuzi.  As his name suggests, there’s a lot going on here. Harbuzi was born in Lund, Sweden, but to ethnic Albanian parents who had fled the war in Kosovo.

Harbuzi’s career got off to a promising start when at 15 he entered the youth system in Feyenoord.  He would not make a senior appearance for the club and moved on to Malmo FF (where he’d been before Feyenoord) where he spent three years.  Harbuzi turned his success at Malmo into a transfer to Genclerbirligi S.K. in the Turkish Super Lig.  He had an excellent first season, but after that there must have been an injury and/or a falling out with management as his playing time dropped dramatically season-by-season until in the middle of the 2011-2012 he moved to Manisaspor.

At the end of the season he moved back to Syrianska F.C. in the Swedish top flight where he played in matches.  He is currently on the books (though he has yet to play a match) at KSF Prespa Birlik- a team in one of the regional leagues that makes up Sweden’s fourth division.  Clearly, at the still young age of 27, Harbuzi is looking to start a more successful “second act” to a career that once had him part of Sweden’s U21 set-up.

Updates to follow, in the meantime enjoy this “highlight” package and the dance music that accompanies it:

*for reasons too idiotic to delve into, the Scottish transfer window is now closed even though it remains open in every other country in the civilized world.


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This entry was posted on September 2, 2013 by in Ross County F.C., Scottish Premiership, The Rumor Mill, Transfers.
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