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19 facts you did not know about Luka Modric

  • From escaping a war zone to lifting the Champions League, Luka Modric has seen it all.
Liam Flin
SENIOR ANALYST
Top 5 / Top 10
Modified 30 Mar 2017, 00:33 IST
Luka Modric Real Madrid Barcelona.jpg
Barcelona had the chance to sign Modric at a very young age

#16 Born in Croatia but made in Bosnia

After being rejected by Hajduk Split at a young age for lacking the required physical attributes, Modric was eventually shown faith by Dinamo Zagreb and he signed a ten-year contract with the club. He was however then loaned out to Inter Zapresic in Bosnia the following year, which is when his career really took flight.

An 18-year-old Modric was thrown into what is still considered the most physical league on the continent. The rough-and-tumble dynamic of the Bosnian top-flight moulded Modric into the versatile individual he is today and he himself stated, "Someone who can play in the Bosnian league can play anywhere".  

Modric went on to win the Bosnian League Player of the Year Award at the end of the term, scoring 4 goals in 18 appearances.

#17 Barcelona passed up the chance to sign him

Before Tottenham eventually secured his services, Luka Modric was the subject of interest from a host of clubs across the continent including Spurs’ bitter rivals Arsenal and Manchester United.

Barcelona also claimed interest and former scout of the Catalan club, Bojan Krkic Senior, revealed, “We brought him to Barcelona to get to know him. We met him for coffee. He left a very good impression. He was speaking fluent English and came across as very intelligent.

It was, however, not meant to be. “He was a player with a winning mentality, but the club weren’t thinking so far ahead in the future, only in the short to medium term.”  So it was a surprising refusal to invest in youth which let Barcelona down in the end; how they must regret such a decision today.

#18 Holidaying with Ostric

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Upon reading this low-down of facts about Luka Modric, it’s clear he hasn’t lead the most straightforward life; conflict has often followed his each and every move. That said, he’s managed to secure an ounce of normality in the relationships he’s made and one, in particular, has lasted the test of time.

Corluka may have been his best man but Marko Ostric will forever remain Modric’s closest long-term companion. The two met as young Croatian refugees shortly after arriving in Zadar. It was football which brought the pair together and Ostric has crafted a career in the game for himself, having plied his trade for the likes of Medimurje Cakovec in his home nation. The pair are still great friends today and often go on holidays together; given the gigantic wage gap between them, let’s hope that Modric is the one paying.

#19 Zidane’s main man and the king of consistency

Luka Modric Zidane
Modric is Zidane’s trusted general in midfield

Ultimately then, Luka Modric seems to have seen it all and nobody could knock him for wanting to lead a Galacticos lifestyle now; only he doesn’t want that. The Croatian talent’s skill is matched only by his modesty and, for that, he instils all those around him with great admiration.

Zidane has himself claimed, "We know that Luka is fundamental for us. He handles game situations very well and off the pitch, he is a spectacle because of his professionalism."

CR7 may be pivotal for goal return, Sergio Ramos indispensable in defence, but Luka Modric is the work-horse at the heart of Real Madrid. Perhaps if there were any justice in football, we’d begin to acknowledge that just a little more.

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Published 29 Mar 2017, 22:28 IST
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