Well, Joško Gvardiol and RB Leipzig didn’t pull off the upset we were all rooting for Wednesday night. Instead, they were absolutely embarrassed by Erling Haaland’s five goals in a 7-0 Champions League loss to Manchester City.
Gvardiol played the full 90 minutes but was only semi-responsible for one of the seven City goals. He did not box out Haaland on goal #2. KDB rattled a shot off the crossbar and the ball bounced directly back towards the penalty spot. If Gvardiol would have hustled on the play, he would have surely cleared the ball. Instead, Haaland raced to the spot for an easy header to make it 2-0.
Gvardiol was given the minimum grade of 1/10 from 90min.com: “On the day he was being touted as ‘The Haaland of centre-backs’, Gvardiol looked nowhere near the Norwegian’s level.” That’s a bit harsh as Gvardiol did stop Haaland on a few occasions. If it wasn’t for him, Haaland could have scored 10. FOTMOB was more generous and gave Gvardiol a 4.5. Nonetheless, a day he and the entire RB Leipzig team will want to forget as soon as possible.
**Side note: The game ended 7-0 in a complete blowout. However, the first City goal was given off a bogus handball in the box for a penalty. What is the defender supposed to do with his back to the ball? And Ederson’s 1st half foul on Werner wasn’t a yellow card? Possibly even a red. Both of these plays shaped the match no matter how you look at it. Seems like City got some help on the night. But are we surprised?
Congratulations Hajduk!!! 👏💪🇭🇷
Buljan kept guessing the wrong way and got one right.
Maybe add Antunović into the mix of possible forwards at WC2026. Two legit goals in 2 straight games.
Croatia keeps its title as the penalty kick kings. 😁
An Argentina vs Croatia PK shootout needs to happen
Was impressed with the Hajduk youngsters. They kept their cool throughout the game, especially in the shootout. Not easy shooting second when the team in front of you scores 8 straight. Although much of the support and noise was on their side, at Dortmund is no cake walk. Not bad taking out both English and German giants.
Hajduk win 9 – 8 on penalties after an amazing penalty shoot out. Buljan proves me wrong and saves the 9th spot kick.
In the semifinal Hajduk will play AC Milan.
Final score Borussia v Hajduk 1 – 1. Hajduk unlucky in the 91 minute when Borussia defender almost scored an own goal attempting a clearance, but the ball came back off the crossbar.
Not confident that Hajduk will win on penalties? Borussia goalkeeper looks a bit more agile that Hajduk’s Buljan.
After 76 minutes Borussia Dortmund v Hajduk 1 – 1. Hajduk took the lead in the 73 minute when Mate Artunovic scored with a superb header. Unfortunately, Borussia equalized from the penalty spot in the 76th minute. If it stays likes this after 90 minutes its penalties, there’s no extra time in UEFA Youth CL.
A shame they gave up that PK. Way too much room for Dortmund on the left flank.
Surprisingly, Hajduk has had the better scoring chances.
Kovacic could move to AC Milan:
Yes it is a heavy loss. But this is against Man City, not some farmer league team. So to not expect them to score makes little sense, despite 7 goals being a bit exorbitant.
I think there were heavy expectations from the last game and the results. So hopefully the coach, and team can learn from this.
People aren’t going like this argument but Gvardiol is still young and the expectations are placed heavily on him.for both Club and Country.
So why are we not asking other questions here? Like where was the midfield or offence in this game?? No goals scored. No counter attack???
Understandably the defense messed up here, I would say including Gvardiol given the amount of goals scored. However, the other positions looked quite according the stats. So what happened??
Looking at the stats as well this is clearly a midfield victory for Man City 33% ball possession and 78% pass accuracy isn’t enough to get anything against teams like Man City. Versus the stats from Man City 67% ball possession and 91% pass accuracy. They won the game before they even entered the field really. Seven times the shots, RB Leipzig didn’t even stand a chance in this one.
I think Leipzig coach has to re-access his strategies here.
Dortmund-Hajduk Youth League, 1:30 p.m. EST on UEFA.TV.
Gvardiol is overrated.
What he did for us at the World Cup, is unmatched by any CB in our history.
Robert Kovac, Tudor, Bilic, Stimac, etc…none of those guys performed like that at any tournament for us.
…and Gvardiol did it while still at 20 years of age.
Even if he doesn’t improve and stays exactly like this for the next three World Cups, we are in a great place in our backline.
I strongly disagree…he just had one bad game (on par with the rest of his teammates). Even Modric has a bad game once in a while.
Another interesting article.on Kovacic’s season last season:
Interesting article once again on Kovacic if your interested in the read. Some of these opinions are quite interesting:
So if we go by recent history (the streak), Man City is the only team in the final 8 that has no chance of winning. I hope they enjoyed the blowout🤣
Napoli too (they’re up 2-0 on Frankfurt and are playing the second tie at home today).
Man City is one of the favorites, and Napoli tops Serie A (by a landslide) right now.
Interesting article praising Kovacic:
If you break down every goal of the 5 Haaland scored you can only truly fault him for the 2nd which came off the woodwork and Erling reacted to it quicker than josko..even then as a defender you don’t expect that to unfold and are kept flat footed.
The way Rio Ferdinand and the English media Are crucifying josko is comical.
If anything the right back and their goalie should be criticized.
The keeper could have hung on to 3 of the 5 instead he punched them away onto Harland’s boot to be slotted away.
Man marking is a thing of the past,but liepzig would have been far better off if Joško just clutched onto his boxers the entire match.
This will be a learning experience for him and make him an even better player.
Yea, even if you go on all those websites that strictly look at the game using metrics/rating based off of errors, clearances, passes, etc… the RB (Henrichs) was by far the worst rated player on the field. Orban was rated worse than Gvardiol too.
That PK call was sramota. What else is new.
Looks like a division 4 boys youth soccer score, where a few of the coach’s in the local neighbor, hijacked all the talent during the draft, and got all the good kids on their team. The other teams live for orange slices and juice bags @ halftime, and a participation trophy at the end of the season.
Josko, has a few more Euro cup Spain performance’s still in his bag of tricks, begging to get out, for our pleasure.
Wow…RB looked terrible today. I only watched the 1st half and every player on Leipzig was awful, including Joško.
I certainly hope buik becomes a good player.
You touch on an important topic though that i had thought about. 20 year old Croat moves to LA. There is a lot of room there to lose focus and go down the wrong path.
Not everyone has the character and focus of a ivica zubac to manage.
I’m just going to go on record here as I already did some time ago but I’m sure that will be forgotten by now so here it is again this is a really long sentence but don’t worry I’ll start using punctuation from now.
The reason Biuk was hyped, was not because he is a hajduk prospect, or because of some kind of conspiracy to raise his transfer value etc. Nor is it symptomatic of delusional “homers” on this site.
Nor does the fact that he has moved to MLS mean he is a bust. Remember that orsic developed hugely playing in the Korean league.
Nor does the fact that he nearly made a mess of his first goal mean anything. As for his first performance on his debut for LA being “nervous”…wow, you think? Croatian kid moves to California to play in the MLS and is nervous? He is human of course he is nervous. Seriously some of you guys I don’t know what goes through your heads. Is it the rakija? Or maybe it’s the tendency to try and value players as fixed commodities and therefore forget all variables and nuances of life and sound judgement. (classic disease of armchair fans and indeed consumer culture steeple generally).
I watched biuk debut. He was good. He looked really sharp and played aggressively, without fear. That’s impressive. He looked quick as well and his touch and balance were there. All this in short cameo.
Next game plays from start. Team wins 4-0. Scores his first goal for club. …
And some of you are complaining? Are you dumb?
@truth, the reason biuk is rated is because what he CAN do represents a fairly unique skill set. It doesn’t mean he has ALL the attributes required. It doesn’t mean he will definitely succeed. It doesn’t mean he is the next modric or messi. It just means he is a talented kid. Who MIGHT become a quick, skillful, goalscoring, dribbling genius of a player. He doesn’t have the talent of prosinecki or neymar so he needs to work hard and stay focused. From what I’ve seen he has done that so far.
Get off his back
just to wrap up on the buik comments. I remember when he was flagged as our greatest prospect in a write up on this site about 1.5 years ago. I am still looking for the link to that piece to review.
I always found that coronation interesting as Buik had had very little pedigree and seemingly just burst on to the scenes with a couple miracle run type goals. Great to see such upside type moments, but tough to call that a foundation to feel confident that this is the next guy.
Then as he struggled for production at Hajduk, I liked to further high light that this is not what a top prospect looks like.
I watched his highlights from his first game and he looked nervous and not overly effective. I haven’t seen the next set of highlights. I wish this guy the best but I’m not holding my breath.
As for gvardiol, let’s just be happy he didn’t get hurt today and miss the qualifiers. His broken nose is probably sign number one of injury proneness. Players who get get themselves off balance or react a second too slow. Think of Joel Embiid constantly breaking a bone every playoff.
UEFA interview with Gvardiol:
Leipzig’s Joško Gvardiol on Man City, World Cup success and where he likes to play:
I like Gvardiol’s comment,
”I like to play as a sweeper. I like to have the ball at my feet”.
I miss the old school sweeper position. I hope it makes a come back!! Our back line future is looking good. I am not convinced with out forwards. Once Perisic goes we are in trouble.
I am old enough to remember from every generation since mid 90’s that we we’re in trouble if Boban left, then when Srna left and then it will eventually be Perisic and Modric – we actually got better every generation so I’m not worried about Perisic , maybe Modric LOL but we always figure it out. We will again and may have the best generations to come- Hvala bog!!!
We kind of already lost Perišić.
He was a monster in previous tournaments, but you could see that he definitely lost a step in this past World Cup (despite scoring on Japan).
Pretty good that we still managed to medal, despite our most impactful player (Perišić) slowing down in his career.