Well, it was fun while it lasted.
After an incredible 1-0 win over Chelsea to start their Champions League campaign, Dinamo Zagreb were brought back to Earth pretty quickly with two losses to AC Milan and only achieving one point from two matches against Red Bull Salzburg. Let’s be real here, were we really expecting Dinamo to finish top-2 in a group with Chelsea and AC Milan? If they wanted to put up a fight, they needed to play much, much better against Salzburg, plain and simple.
Europa League will always be the better and more competitive tournament for the Croatian champions. I know it’s sexy to see the big boys come to town, but they will always dominate Dinamo if they need to. Dinamo caught Chelsea on a bad day when former manager Tuchel already had one foot out the door.
The good news: for as bad as they have been the past four Champions League group stage matches, Dinamo are in semi-fortunate position to try and grab third spot in group and book a Europa League knockout berth. Chelsea have already topped the group with one game remaining as they hold the head-to-head tiebreaker against AC Milan. That means Chelsea will surely treat next week’s match vs. Dinamo at Stamford Bridge as a friendly and rest some starters. That’s excellent news for Dinamo as only a win matters for them. A draw does nothing.
AC Milan host Salzburg at San Siro in their final group stage match. With second place on the line, AC Milan must not lose to Salzburg or their Champions League Round of 16 hopes are over. If Dinamo can somehow win against a Chelsea B-squad AND AC Milan defeat RB Salzburg, Dinamo will backdoor 3rd place and a Europa League berth. Not impossible.
“Let’s be real here, were we really expecting Dinamo to finish top-2 in a group with Chelsea and AC Milan?” After they beat Chelsea. ABSOLUTLY !!
I personally didn’t think it would happen. Not to be throwing a damper on everything, but Croatian Club soccer simply isn’t there yet. As much as I was happy that Dinamo beat Chelsea (and Tottenham the last time around), even in that game Chelsea were extremely unlucky with some of the opportunities they had which were many, the result easily could have gone the other way.
The telling factor will be how Dinamo does against Chelsea in this next game, which I don’t believe the result will be in Dinamo’s favour. I believe that Cheslea will win the game and potentially by a landslide as much as I hate Premier League teams being on top, and as much as I want to see Dinamo do well for Croatian soccer in general.
I have said as much before. For Croatian club soccer, for Dinamo as well, and in general, the league as whole needs to start doing better with whatever they are lacking. Be it management, be it scouting, or whatever it may be that is holding certain teams back from competing better against Dinamo. This includes Hajduk, Rijeka, and Osijek and the larger scale teams in Croatia. I think that only then will we be able to expect better results from Dinamo, and Croatian club teams in general.
Just my two sense for whatever it’s worth.
I know I am saying this after the fact, I didn’t want to say it in the moment after the game with Cheslea, as I was hopefully they might of pulled something off against that first game with AC Milan, but after that game I was pretty sure they weren’t going anywhere. The first game with Chelsea the stats speak for themselves. 15 shots for Cheslea vs 8 for Dinamo, 70 percent possession for Cheslea vs 30 percent for Dinamo… Not much to be said really. Kind of reminds of how poorly Hajduk did against Villareal, difference being Dinamo’s defender really and the score line which really is telling the game or the victory won against Chelsea.
I personally felt that the game was won by Sutalo, which worries me now as people have been speaking poorly of the guy after the last couple of games.
Rebic (6): Certainly not his finest performance with a lot of rocky moves but he improved a little as the game went on. It was a nice backheel for Tonali before the penalty, but to get a higher rating more composure would’ve been needed.
You are delusional if you think Rebic should be on the team. This is Rebic’s performance in a nutshell every time he plays. Composure on the ball is the problem, and once again no goal or assist in a bigger game.in the UCL.
Well looks like modric might’ve jinxed himself with that last World Cup comment. He was injured for todays Madrid game because of an abductor injury. This is the same injury he suffered vs Italy in euro qualifying several years ago and put him out months. His status for the World Cup is in serious jeopardy and the baseline status should be doubtful. What a shame for him to miss out on the swan song
Regarding Modric…that interview was 13 months old. As long as he’s healthy and playing well, I wouldn’t be surprised if he continued to play and hangs them up after the Euros.
I would think the thought of playing in Germany with all the Croatian fans there might be enough to entice him. Playing his last game in Qatar wouldn’t be..unless we won it all 🙂
Also, I don’t think he’s formally commented on the FIFA documentary since the media ran with this.
He also said last year that he doesn’t believe in retiring from the National Team.
You play until you cannot anymore.
We’ll know in a couple of months for sure.
Locked to start: Gvardiol, Sosa, Modric, Majer, Modric, Perisic, Kovacic, Vlasic. Nobody else is safe.
You don’t think Brozović is a lock to start?
Majer only starts if one of Modrić, Brozović or Kovačić are injured (unless Dalić decides to start Majer at RW).
Vlašić isn’t a lock to start either (despite having a great season).
The rest on your list for sure are starting (plus Broz, Livaković, and Juranović).
RW, Striker and one CB spot are the only question marks.
I have to agree with Maminjo there, why is Brozovic not a locked to start. And Vlasic is still a question mark personally. I am a little more.worried based on what I have read below, about Sutalo. Not sure what is happening there that cannot be good for us.
I guess we will have to see what happens for the world cup and who Dalic picks.
Did anyone else see that article for Modroc’s abductor issue? Is he gonna be good for the World Cup??
Precautionary, Ancelotti stated yesterday that Modric will be ready for Real Madrid this weekend, which is good news.
It seems like it happened back on September 29th, and it may have never healed, just guessing. Maybe that a good thing if the injury incident happened 4 weeks ago
https://sportsbrief.com/football/real-madrid/24821-real-madrid-star-luka-modric-suffers-hip-injury-set-ruled-action-10-days/ke there was an article
I didn’t even catch the dreadful performance while at work. The Chelsea win got my hopes high and now they won’t even make the knockout stages…again. I’m satisfied Kovacic and Gvardiol scored. We’re not starting Sutalo at the World Cup. He’s too inexperienced and got his ankles broken by Leao. Livakovic didn’t even play that bad considering the score. Misic played well. To all you Rebic lovers…where was he? Not starting again and nor should make the NT squad. Gvardiol, Sosa, Majer, are all locked to start.
Sometimes the wheels fall off…all 4 of them at the same time and thats what happened today.
I felt Dinamo were actually ok in the first half except for on the 1st Milan goal….I didn’t really see who’s man that was but he was free and easily scored. After that it was blunder after blunder…Leao walked right through two defenders and even slowed down, Ljubicic scores on his own net and its not like he was forced to do that. I’ve played in several games in my life where we need to win and yet certain players that are usually solid would end up doing things they’ve never done before…it happens. I’m not sure if some of these guys are already tired from playing every 3-4 days but these blunders were unexplainable!
In the first half, Petkovic was having his way with the Milan defenders but neither Orsic nor Ivanusec….Moharrammi…Ademi provided any threats…and thats what you need when you’re playing their system. Ristovski is only good as an outside defender, not as a stopper in a 3-5-2…the guy isn’t very good on the ball.
Overall, this was one pretty bad game and the guys need to focus on the upcoming games, this game is done!
Yeah. First half was solid until the unnecessary foul that gave Milan a dangerous free kick position which lead to the first goal.
Couple of great attempts by Oršić and Ivanušec that could have been great goals before that.
I guess they just became too demoralized after that first half, where they played well but ended up down a goal. Story of their Champions League life.
Aside from the lazy second half, Dinamo played very well in this year’s Champions League.
Just so unlucky in the previous three games, then they finally have an actual bad game today and it’s the only thing everyone will remember.
Very poor performance from Dinamo, in the end lucky that it was only 4 – 0.
Defensively very poor, and Josip Sutalo is getting into habit of making mistakes that always lead to goals. Ljubicic also had a shocker tonight. Dino Peric had a good match in defence. Livakovic made some good saves and is not to be blamed for any of the goals.
Looks like Ol’ Lovren is getting the start in this World Cup
and Marocco will punish us -> remember that! |
It is going to be a difficult decision for Dalic. It will depend on fitness and club form on who gets the nod. We will know in the friendly against Saudia Arabia, whoever starts the match will in all probability also start against Marocco. I anticipate that Dalic will start the friendly with the strongest line up before making numerous changes in the second half.
Who was our last player to play his club football outside of Europe?
Was mandzu on the National team when he played out of the continent?
Several of Vida’s games are in Asia. 🙂
or I should say, have been in Asia. Think he plays in Greece now
I think sutalo should not be our starting cb qt world cup ill take erlic lovren over him imo.
And Livi should not be number one but he will.
Im more worried about Dalic not getting starting 11 correct thats my issue we dont have a starting 8 let alone a 11.
But what happens happens
“I think sutalo should not be our starting cb”
This was apparent long ago.
“And Livi should not be number one but he will.”
There are several factors working against Croatia in this tournament relative to the big guys.
The first is that because of the winter world cup, the training session is very short. In a summer world cup, there will be almost a month of prep. In this version, club games will end in the middle of november, and croatia’s first game will be on november 23rd.
This is a major shift. It’s ok for players who play together often like from Spain, but Croatia has always benefited from being able to bring their players playing in different countries and teams together for weeks to finally make them cohesive.
That opportunity will not exist this go around.
Furthermore, the hot, humid climate will not be beneficial. Croatia has historically performed better on European soil than abroad (Brazil, South Korea). A team like Morocco will be much better acclimated to the climate and even a team like Belgium could feature several players that have roots in this warmer climate zone.
For a player of Modric’s age, it may become too much to handle. For a player nursing a muscle injury like bozo-vic, the climate will increase the risk of reaggravation.
A half black dude born and raised in Belgium will trigger his innate African climate adaptability (which is still a very different climate than in the Gulf states) and it will give them a notable advantage over our team (Dalmos and all).
It will be warmer in Qatar, but not brutal. France (1998) in the summer can be quite warm. Russia (2018) was played in warmer climates too.
Re the poor performance in “hot” Brazil, (2014) that was actually during their winter. I wore a light coat to the game in Sao Paolo. Their second game was in the middle of the jungle, and was indeed hot, but we crushed Cameroon in that game.
Kovacic with a beauty in the 23rd for his side.
He looked surprised it went in
Gvardiol is getting in on the fun. Close range header in the 13th to put his side up against Madrid
Rebic comes back to his homeland to score a hat trick and soul champ is hospitalized due to severing tendons in his wrist,and a sprained forearm muscle
LOL and has a sign that says- SOUL CHAMP this is for you!! Samo ti!!!
Lmao throw in a heart attack!