Augsburg captain Ermedin Demirović has been one of the Bundesliga’s unsung heroes this campaign as Die Fuggerstädter enjoy their best start to a season since the 2017/18 campaign. But who is exactly is the Bosnia and Herzegovina international? bundesliga.com shares all you need to know on the forward…
Data correct as of 6 December 2023
Age: 25 (born 25 March 1998)
Country: Bosnia and Herzegovina (23 caps, one goal)
Despite representing Bosnia internationally, Demirović was born and raised in Hamburg, even playing for HSV’s youth teams before making the switch to RB Leipzig in 2014 as a 16-year-old. However, although he scored at a prolific rate at both U17 and U19 level, he played just one game for Die Roten Bullen’s second team before moving to Spanish outfit Deportivo Alavés in 2017. In the little amount of playing time he received during 2017/18 – six games across all competitions – he made an impact, finding the back of the net on four occasions, but that was not enough to nail down a regular spot in the starting XI. As such, he spent the following campaign on loan with Ligue 1’s Sochaux and Spanish second-tier team Almería, struggling to find his feet at either.
The 2019/20 term, though, would prove to be Demirović’s breakthrough. After joining Swiss outfit St. Gallen on a temporary basis, he netted on 14 occasions in 28 games, racking up a further seven assists. That was enough to convince Christian Streich and Freiburg to give him a permanent home, and he immediately became an important player for Die Breisgau Brasilianer. While goals were not at the forefront of his game in the Black Forest, he contributed with five goals and six assists during the 2020/21 term, and followed that up with two and three respectively the next season, making 61 appearances in the Bundesliga overall. Unfortunately, his time at the club ended on a disappointing note, as he missed a penalty in the 2022 DFB Cup final penalty shoot-out defeat to Leipzig.
He was involved in a swap deal with Michael Gregoritsch that summer, which has arguably been the best thing for his career on a personal level. Eight goals and four assists last season represented a solid return, and his leadership skills were clearly appreciated by former head coach Enrico Maaßen, who appointed him captain in August 2023. While Maaßen has since been dismissed, Demirović has gone from strength to strength, netting seven times in the league and creating a further five. He has represented his country since 2018, picking up 23 caps and scoring once, against Montenegro in September 2022.
Plays a bit like… Ollie Watkins
Demirović always puts in a shift, is as comfortable on the flanks as he is up top, has shown he is capable of playing on the shoulder of the last defender and also links up well with his teammates. All of that sounds eerily similar to Aston Villa’s Ollie Watkins, who has been scoring regularly for the Villans ever since he signed in 2020. Demirović will be hoping he can match the England international’s scoring rate over the years to come.
Did you know?
The 6'1" man regularly displays his fighting spirit on the pitch, so it should come as no surprise to learn that his nickname is "the Boxer" - his goal celebration obviously played a large part in him being attributed with the moniker. Explaining the reason behind it, he said, “It has to do with the path that has taken me to where I am now. Generally. From back during my school days to walking on the street. Wherever I went, I channeled that into me because I've always needed to ‘box’ my way out of situations ever since I was a kid. I try to do the same on the pitch as well: to box myself out of difficult situations. I love the sport as well. I follow boxing. That's how it came about. That's how the nickname came to be as well."
What they said
“It’s not for nothing that Demi is captain of this team. Over the last year, I have repeatedly emphasised how many things he manages in the dressing room, how he trains, what kind of energy he brings into the dressing room, on the training pitch and on the playing field.” - Former Augsburg head coach Enrico Maaßen in September 2023
“Ermedin brings a lot to the table in terms of football. And above all, the mental aspect is right. He is very self-confident without ever seeming arrogant” - St. Gallen sporting director Alain Sutter in 2019
“My parents were still in Hamburg and I had moved out at the age of 16. We are extremely family-oriented. My father was constantly told to watch out for me. Of course, I did some stupid things but I knew that my father was always behind me, regardless of what I did. He would always back me.” - Demirović on his father’s influence as he made his initial steps in the football industry
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