Milan Baros (Born 28 October 1981) is a Czech football striker who currently plays for Slovan Liberec in the Czech First League.In 2005, he was part of the Liverpool team which won the UEFA Champions League. He went on to win Ligue 1 with Lyon in 2007, the FA Cup with Portsmouth in 2008 and the Süper Lig with Galatasaray in 2012. He has also had spells with Baník Ostrava, where he started his career, and English club Aston Villa.
Born in Valašské Meziříčí, Baroš represented the Czech Republic international team in 93 matches, scoring on 41 occasions. He won the Golden Boot as top scorer of the Euro 2004 tournament, where his nation reached the semi-finals. He went on to play in three more major international tournaments. His 41 goals for the Czech Republic is second behind only Jan Koller.
As a boy, Milan Baros played for youth clubs in Vigantice and Rožnov pod Radhoštěm before joining the youth team of Baník Ostrava at the age of 12. In 1998 he made his debut for the club in the Czech First League, the top division of Czech football, becoming a regular over the next few seasons. In 2000, he won the Talent of the Year award at the Czech Footballer of the Year awards. He was described by the Czech News Agency in the 2000–01 season as “perhaps the biggest star of the [Czech] football league”. He played his last game for the club on 2 December 2001, in a 1–0 loss at Viktoria Žižkov. During his time in Ostrava, he scored 23 league goals in 76 appearances.
Milan Baros joined Liverpool in 2002 in a transfer worth £3.2 million, although he did not move straight away due to delays in obtaining a work permit for him. He made his club debut in a UEFA Champions League tie away to Barcelona on 13 March; he played last 16 minutes in place of Emile Heskey as the match finished goalless. It was his only appearance of the 2001–02 season.
In June 2005, former manager Gérard Houllier, then with French club Lyon, made an approach to sign Baroš. The player rejected the approach, but only made two substitute appearances for Liverpool in the 2005–06 season before leaving the club. He left Liverpool with league figures of 19 goals in 68 appearances.
Baroš moved to Premiership side Aston Villa for a fee of £6.5 million in August 2005, signing a four-year contract. He was given the number 10 shirt. Just ten minutes into his Aston Villa debut, he scored the only goal in his new team’s league victory over Blackburn. He played a crucial role in Villa’s League Cup second round victory against Wycombe Wanderers in September.
Baroš failed to score at the start of the 2006–07 season, leading new manager Martin O’Neill to challenge him in October to prove himself before the January transfer window. He subsequently scored his first goal of the season in December 2006, eight months since scoring his last one, with a close-range equaliser against Sheffield United in a 2–2 draw. Although he also managed to score for Aston Villa in a 2–1 loss to Manchester United in the FA Cup, he left the club in January 2007, having scored just once in 17 league matches that season.
On 22 January 2007, Baroš signed with French side Lyon, signing a three-and-a-half year contract and reuniting with former manager Gérard Houllier from his time at Liverpool. The deal swapped Baroš with Lyon striker John Carew, who joined Aston Villa on a three-and-a-half-year deal. Just two days after joining the club, he made his Lyon debut in a league match against Bordeaux. He appeared as a substitute, as league leaders Lyon lost 2–1 for their first home defeat of the season. Baroš took part in that year’s Champions League, featuring as a substitute in a 0–0 draw in Rome against Roma. He played no further part in that season’s Champions League campaign, as he remained on the bench in the return leg as Lyon were eliminated.
Baroš scored in Lyon’s opening game of the 2007–08 season as his club won 2–0 against Auxerre. However, he played significantly less under new manager Alain Perrin, making just six starts and scoring a total of three league goals. In mid-November, Baroš revealed a break down in his relationship with Perrin and hinted at a move to another club.
Baroš joined Premier League side Portsmouth on loan from Lyon in January 2008 until the end of the season, with the option of making the move permanent at the end of the loan. Baroš played a significant role in the club winning the 2008 FA Cup.
In August 2008, Baroš joined Turkish champions Galatasaray from Lyon for a fee of €4.7 million. He made his first appearance against Kayserispor, playing the last 15 minutes. Baroš scored his first two goals for the club in the UEFA Cup first round, first leg game against Bellinzona. Three days later, in his first league start, he once again scored two goals against Kocaelispor, with Galatasaray going on to win the match 4–1. On 21 December 2008, Baroš scored a hat-trick in the 4–2 Süper Lig derby win against Beşiktaş, converting two penalties and scoring one from open play. He scored another hat-trick later in the season against Hacettepe. He finished the 2008–09 season as the Süper Lig top scorer with 20 goals.
Milan Baros started representing the Czech Republic in 1997, at under-15 level. Over the next three years he moved up to play at higher age groups, specifically under-16, 17 and 18. Baroš played in the 2000 Olympic tournament, making three appearances for the team. He took part in two other major tournaments at junior level: the 2000 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship, at which the Czech Republic placed second, and the 2002 UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship, which the Czech Republic won.
World Cup 2006
In qualification for the 2006 World Cup, Baroš scored five goals for his country, including four in consecutive matches in 2005. An injury to his foot, picked up in a match on 3 June, kept him out of
2006 FIFA World Cup games against the United States and Ghana. He did appear in the Czechs’ final group game against Italy, but appeared unfit and left the game after 64 minutes to be replaced by David Jarolím.
In the run up to UEFA Euro 2008, Milan Baros had not scored an international goal since March 2007. He started the Czech Republic’s second group game against Portugal, but Portugal won 3–1 and Baroš failed to score. Jan Koller was preferred to Baroš in the starting lineup for the next match, against Turkey. Despite neither playing in the match nor even being on the pitch, Baroš suffered the indignity of receiving a yellow card during stoppage time at the end of the match.
League Cup: 2003
UEFA Champions League: 2005
Ligue 1: 2006–07
Trophée des champions: 2007
FA Cup: 2008
Süper Lig: 2011–12
Czech Cup: 2015–16
UEFA European Under-21 Football Championship: 2002
UEFA Euro 2004 Top Scorer
UEFA Euro 2004 All-Star Team
Süper Lig Top Scorer: 2008–09
Tags: Super-Lig, Euro-2004, Euro-2008, Czech-Republic, Czech-Cup, Mlade-Boleslav, Portsmouth, FA-Cup, Galatasaray, Liverpool, Lyon, Aston-Villa, Champions-League, World-Cup-2006, Ligue-1