2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers: Luka Modric believes that Croatia can now be at peace till spring
With their latest win against Ireland, Croatia now find themselves in a strong position to qualify for the next World Cup
Real Madrid midfield maestro, Luka Modric, has shared his contentment after Croatia’s 2-0 win against Iceland in the World Cup Qualifiers group stage. The Croat believes that ending the year on a high note was what truly mattered as Croatia can now be at peace till spring.
“The most important thing was that we won a tough game,” said Modric. “We’re happy to finish our competitive year on a high. We can now wait serenely until spring.
“The first part of our qualifying campaign was played at a high level, and the only damage was the two points dropped against Turkey. We deserved them that day, but the ball just wouldn’t go in. We did well against Iceland – we worked hard and kept our concentration.”
However, the former Tottenham Hotspurs player isn’t letting the foot off the gas as he realizes that the World Cup is still far away and that his team will have to face a lot of challenging situations before they can qualify for the tournament in Russia.
“However, the World Cup is still a long way off. We have a lot of tough games ahead, both home and away. Nothing has been decided. We have to keep working and playing in the same vein.”
Meanwhile, Croatia manager, Ante Cacic revealed the jovial mood within the camp after resolving their Iceland “exam.” The 63-year-old believes that playing in friendlies, like their next game against Northern Ireland, is real test for the ones who haven’t been much involved with the national setup.
“The Iceland examination has been successfully resolved, so we’ll travel to Belfast in a good mood,” said Cacic. “We’re taking 16 players, intending to play a good game.
“Every game is important, and this one can give many answers about players who have been less involved in the national-team games. Some are with me for the first time, and some will get an opportunity to get a real, competitive test.”
Finally, he concluded by claiming that his side are a tough nut to crack for anyone and would like to break Northern Ireland’s unbeaten streak at home.
“I have no doubt that Croatia are a challenge to anyone, including Northern Ireland, who are on an undefeated streak on their own turf. We will do everything to break the run.”
With their latest win against Ireland, Croatia now find themselves in a strong position to qualify for the next World Cup. With 10 points out of a possible 12, they sit at top of their qualifiers group, closely followed by Ukraine and Iceland.