Nogometni Klub Lokomotiva, usually known as NK Lokomotiva, or simply Lokomotiva, was founded in the city of Zagreb in May 1914. The club has spent much of its recent history in the lower divisions of the Croatian league system and served as a feeder club for Dinamo Zagreb between 2007 and 2009. Although this partnership is officially at an end, the two teams still enjoy an unofficial relationship, which includes Dinamo Zagreb regularly loaning players to Lokomotiva.
Lokomotiva began life under the name ŽŠK Victoria and adopted its current name in 1947. Although seen as a smaller club than other sides from the city, like HAŠK and Građanski, the team competed in the Yugoslav First League for eight consecutive seasons in the late 1940s and early 1950s. During this time, their best league performance was a third place finish in 1952. They suffered relegation in 1957 and would not return to Yugoslavia's top tier again.
Since Croatia's declaration of independence from Yugoslavia, Lokomotiva have spent most of their time outside of the country's top tier. However, the team went on a remarkable run of form and earned promotions in 2006-07, 2007-08 and 2008-09 to reach the Prva HNL for the first time. Their first season in the division saw the club finish in 8th place, scoring a number of memorable wins, including a victory over Hajduk Split. To date, major honours have been out of the club's reach.
Some of the notable players to play for Lokomotiva include Yugoslav internationals Vladimir Firm and Vladimir Čonč, as well as Drago Hmelina.
Upon entering the top division, the team moved into the Stadion Maksimir in order to meet the stadium requirements of the league. The stadium, which is shared with Dinamo Zagreb, first opened in 1912 and also hosts Croatian international matches. It has a maximum capacity of 35,000.