Published: Wed, July 11, 2018
Sport | By Patty Hardy

Croatia Look to Modric to Carry Them Through

Croatia Look to Modric to Carry Them Through

The overachieving hosts, the lowest ranked team in the tournament at No. 70, were trying to make it to the World Cup semifinals for the first time since the Soviet Union finished fourth at the 1966 tournament in England. Fans should expect a fierce midfield contest, and can hopefully look forward to fluid, flowing play.

"It is true we have not made good results at major tournaments for decades, but we should not be surprised Croatia are in the last four of the World Cup given the quality of the players, which has been proven".

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Deschamps may have bitter memories from that Euro final in front of a home crowd, but he is now on the verge of joining an elite club of coaches who have also won the World Cup as players.

The England team need to beat Croatia on Wednesday (11 July) to reserve their spot in the final on Sunday. Both teams have fought their way valiantly to this point, even getting through penalty shootouts to advance.

"It is going to be a hard moment for us to manage, but we have to do it quickly and get going".

The Juventus striker accumulated a bar tab of £3,000 as he provided free beers to supporters watching on in his home town of Slavonski Brod despite being more than 2,500 miles away from Sochi.

Now, finally, there is a team ready to join them in Croatian football's pantheon of heroes.

He said: "Well, I think I've said this before, but I was not a renowned fashion icon throughout my playing career, so it's rather unusual to feel that way now".

The penalty shootout win against hosts Russian Federation in the quarter-finals on Sunday seems to have gone a long way towards achieving that. "We were unlucky at previous tournaments but now we are collecting those debts this year", said Modric after Saturday's win over Russian Federation in Sochi. "Rakitic I haven't played against but I played against Modric twice this year in the Champions League and everyone knows what he did in the Premier League".

"Hopefully we will go a step further than in 1998".

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