Yksel Osmanovski (Turkish: Yüksel Osmanoğlu; born 24 February 1977) is a Swedish former professional footballer of who played as a striker. He played professionally in Sweden, Italy, and France, and represented the Sweden national team a total of 15 times, scoring 2 goals. Osmanovski was a squad player for Sweden at UEFA Euro 2000.
Born in Skrävlinge, Malmö, Osmanovski grew up in Rosengård, where fellow Swedish footballer Zlatan Ibrahimović also grew up. In an early interview, Zlatan said that "within a few years, I will play in Italy, and eventually the national team. I want to follow in Yksel's footsteps. We know each other, even if he is four years older than me. I got his autograph when he started playing for Malmö FF, when I played in Malmö BI. When he came to Rosengård and played and dribbled with us kids, we were all shouting "Yksel, Yksel, Yksel!" - Ibrahimović, in 2000.
Osmanovski played for Malmö BI and IFK Malmö as a child, but joined Malmö FF in 1987 where he eventually made his debut in 1995. He gradually became a star in the Swedish league, and was bought by Italian Serie A outfit Bari. After three seasons he moved on to Torino, but struggled to capture a first team place. He had a loan spell at Bordeaux, where he was on the bench when they won the 2002 Coupe de la Ligue Final, before returning to Malmö FF in 2004. There he was part of the team that won the Allsvenskan league title, although Osmanovski himself did not receive a winner's medal, because he took part in too few matches. Still he played the crucial role, in stopping a ball on the goal line against title rivals Halmstad BK. Had it gone in, Malmö would certainly not won the league title, but thanks to a 2–2 draw, they kept themselves within a shot.
In February 2008, Osmanovski announced his retirement from professional football, having not had his contract with Malmö renewed.
Osmanovski was the first Muslim to represent Sweden. He played 15 international matches. and was a squad player for the Euro 2000.
On 14 January 2013, it was announced that Osmanovski would return to football, working as U21 coach for his previous club Malmö FF.
|Sweden national team|
|1.||27 May 1999||Råsunda stadion, Solna, Sweden||Jamaica||1–0||2–1||Friendly|