Croatia could not find a goal against Chile and surrendered twice in the last 10 minutes, one being an own goal, to bow out of the 2013 U20 World Cup in the Round of 16 after a 2-0 loss Wednesday night. A win would have seen Croatia play a gritty Ghana team in the quarterfinal round, after they surprised Portugal, beating them 3-2.
The chances were there for the mladi Vatreni as countless attacks in the box never came to fruition, with shots from outside the box sailing over the crossbar. It will come as a disappointment to the players as Croatia won two games and drew one in the group stage, exiting in the round of 16 while fellow group F opponents Uruguay and Uzbekistan will play in the quarterfinals.
Croatia doubled up Chile with eight shots on goal versus four, but the South American side finally found a goal off a tricky header with 10 minutes to go for the win. The Chileans held the ball for 55% of the match. It was a good display for the team as whole this tournament after going three and out two years ago in Columbia. Croatia was without four of its best players but RNK Split striker Ante Rebic stood out from the shadows with some impressive play and a solid goal against New Zealand in group play.
The future looks bright if some of these Croatian young guns can be molded correctly for the senior side.