Josip Juranović is a Croatian professional footballer who plays as a right-back for Scottish Premiership club Celtic and the Croatia national team.
Juranović has become an integral part of the Croatia national team and was part of the squad that finished runners-up at the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. At club level, he started his career in his native Croatia with Hajduk Split before moving abroad to play in Poland and Scotland.
In this article, we will take a deep dive into the life and career of Josip Juranović. We will look at his background, how he started playing football, his career highlights, style of play, net worth and personal life.
Background and Early Life
Josip Juranović was born on 11 August 1995 in Zagreb, Croatia.
He started playing football at a young age at the academy of Croatian powerhouse Dinamo Zagreb. However, he failed to break into the first team at Dinamo and was released by the club as a teenager.
Juranović then moved to city rivals Lokomotiva Zagreb in 2013 to revive his career. He spent two seasons playing for Lokomotiva’s youth teams and impressed enough to earn a first-team call-up in 2015 at the age of 19.
Career Beginnings at Lokomotiva Zagreb
Juranović made his professional debut for Lokomotiva in a 1-0 league win over Istra 1961 in March 2015. He quickly established himself as a key player for Lokomotiva in the right-back position.
In his first two seasons with Lokomotiva in the top-flight Croatian First Football League, Juranović made 57 league appearances and scored 1 goal. His consistent performances helped Lokomotiva qualify for the UEFA Europa League in the 2016-17 season.
Juranović made his European debut for Lokomotiva in a Europa League qualifier in June 2016. He immediately became a fans’ favorite and earned the nickname “Jurac” for his energetic displays up and down the right flank.
Breakthrough at Hajduk Split
After three impressive seasons at Lokomotiva, Juranović attracted interest from bigger clubs in Croatia. In June 2017, he completed a transfer to Hajduk Split for a reported fee of €200,000.
Juranović was given the number 2 shirt at Hajduk and was expected to replace club captain Stanko Jurić at right-back. He adapted quickly to his new surroundings and established himself as the undisputed first-choice right-back for Hajduk in his very first season.
In his debut season for Hajduk, Juranović made 32 league appearances, scored 1 goal and provided 7 assists as the club finished third in the league. His excellent crossing ability and stamina to charge up and down the right flank made him a fan favorite.
Juranović continued his development in the 2018-19 season under new Hajduk manager Željko Kopić. He was one of Hajduk’s standout players as they finished second in the league behind Dinamo Zagreb.
Croatian National Team Call-up
Juranović’s strong performances for Hajduk Split in the 2017-18 season earned him a first call-up to the Croatian national team in September 2018.
He made his international debut in a 6-0 UEFA Nations League win over Spain on 11 September 2018, coming on as a late second-half substitute.
Just two months after his international debut, Juranović was named in Croatia’s squad for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia. He did not feature in any games at the World Cup as Croatia went all the way to the final before losing 4-2 to France. Nonetheless, being part of the historic World Cup squad was invaluable experience for the young right-back.
After the World Cup, Juranović established himself as the first-choice right-back for Croatia with influential manager Zlatko Dalić showing faith in him. He started all of Croatia’s Euro 2020 qualifying games and helped them qualify by topping their group.
Transfer to Legia Warsaw
On 17 August 2020, Polish club Legia Warsaw announced that they had signed Juranović on a three-year contract. The transfer fee was reported to be around €2.5 million.
Juranović was brought in to replace Polish international Łukasz Piszczek, who had recently retired from club football. Legia’s manager Czesław Michniewicz immediately installed Juranović as his starting right-back.
In his first season with Legia Warsaw, Juranović won the Ekstraklasa title as the club were crowned Polish champions for the 15th time. He was ever-present at right-back, playing in 33 out of Legia’s 37 league games.
Juranović also made his debut in the UEFA Champions League with Legia in the 2020-21 season. He started in all 6 of Legia’s group stage games against the likes of Benfica, Lech Poznań and Rangers.
Move to Celtic
On 31 August 2021, deadline day of the summer transfer window, Juranović completed a surprise £2.5 million move to Scottish giants Celtic. Legia Warsaw reluctantly agreed to sell him as his contract was entering its final year.
Juranović was signed as a replacement for longtime Celtic right-back Jeremie Frimpong who had been sold to Bayer Leverkusen earlier that window.
Juranović settled in quickly at Celtic and established himself as an undisputed starter under new manager Ange Postecoglou. He helped Celtic win the League Cup in his first season, with a 2-1 extra time victory over Hibernian in the final.
Juranović also scored a penalty in a crucial 3-0 league win over Rangers at Celtic Park in February 2022 as Celtic went on to reclaim the Scottish Premiership title from their fierce Glasgow rivals.
In his first season with Celtic, Juranović made 40 appearances across all competitions and contributed 1 goal and 7 assists. His rampaging runs down the right flank and dangerous crossing ability made him a fan favorite at Parkhead.
Juranović further enhanced his reputation with a string of excellent performances for Croatia at the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. He started at right-back in all of Croatia’s games as they reached the semifinals before losing to eventual champions Argentina.
Style of Play
Juranović is an attack-minded and energetic modern full-back who excels at charging up and down the right flank for 90 minutes.
Despite his relatively small stature at 5ft 9in, Juranović is strong in the tackle and also adept at dribbling past opponents. He has excellent crossing ability and likes to whip early balls into the box.
Juranović’s stamina, work rate and positional discipline allows him to fulfill his defensive duties as well. He is also capable of playing anywhere across the defense or midfield due to his versatility.
For Croatia, Juranović is given the license to play almost as a right-winger and his overlapping runs and combination play with the attackers is a key part of their system.
Net Worth and Sponsorships
As of 2024, Josip Juranović’s net worth is estimated to be around €5 million.
The vast majority of his wealth has been accumulated through his lucrative contracts at Celtic and with the Croatian national team. Juranović is reported to earn around £20,000 a week at Celtic.
Some of Juranović’s primary sponsorship deals include:
- Adidas – Juranović signed a boot deal with Adidas after his breakthrough at the 2018 World Cup. He has represented Predator and X Ghosted Adidas boot silos.
- Panini – Juranović appeared on Panini sticker collections for the 2018 World Cup and Euro 2020.
- Hyundai – Juranović featured in a sponsorship campaign for Hyundai in Croatia after starring at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
As his profile continues to grow, Juranović can be expected to sign more lucrative endorsement deals and see his net worth rise substantially over the coming years.
Josip Juranović was born to Croatian parents in Zagreb, Croatia but spent most of his childhood growing up in Austria.
Juranović met his long-time girlfriend Ana Bišćan while they were both teenagers in Zagreb. They have been together since 2013. The couple does not have any children yet.
Juranović has kept his personal life very private throughout his career so far. He prefers to stay out of the media spotlight and focus on his football.
When not playing or training, Juranović enjoys spending time with his girlfriend, playing video games, going fishing and driving sports cars. He is known to be an avid gamer and has streamed himself playing Fortnite and FIFA with his Croatia teammates.
Juranović has tattoos on both arms but no known political affiliations or controversial views off the pitch. By all accounts, he is a humble, down-to-earth and popular figure among his teammates.