Although few things divide a city like a river, nothing segregates people so completely as a civil war. Mostar is as recognisable for its ethno-cultural partition as it is for the famous Ottoman bridge spanning the Neretva River.
The rupture between the primarily Catholic Croat west bank and the largely Bosniak Muslim east is exemplified by the intensity of the Zrinjski-Velez derby. The animosity between the teams is rooted not only in sectarianism, but also in their divergent political views. More than any other in the Balkans, the Mostar derby is a microcosm of a century or so of Bosnian history, with the clubs defined as much by politics and war as by players or fans.