Has Luka Modrić been reading the papers?
In his first start of 2013 in the second leg of the Copa del Rey Round of 16 Wednesday night, Modrić played exceptionally well versus Celta Vigo, setting up Cristinao Ronaldo’s second goal of the match with a beautiful over-the-top lob into the box which the Portugal captain deflected into goal to make it 2-0. Later in the first half, Modrić appeared to have assisted Ronaldo once more off a header pass, which would have given Ronaldo a natural hat trick, but he was incorrectly ruled offside. Real Madrid would ultimately win 4-0 and will now take on Valencia in the Copa del Rey quarterfinals.
Modrić is no goal scorer, but if he can consistently play like this and set up his superstar teammates in a way that will produce goals, he should feel right at home; and the ‘2012 La Liga Bust’ title will quickly be forgotten.
Modrić assist at 0:32
In other news around Europe…
Milan Badelj scored in the 13th minute of Hamburg’s 2-2 friendly draw vs. Borussia Monchengladbach Wednesday night. Badelj picked up a loose ball amongst the mayhem in the box and shot inside the near post for the opening goal. Borussia Monchengladbach’s 19 year-old Sweden U-21 striker Branimir Hrgota equalized in the 86th minute with a well composed strike from inside the box. He was born in Jajce, Bosnia, but has been rumored to have Croatian ties.
Badelj goal at 0:15, Hrgota goal at 1:10