Luka Modrić sat out Real Madrid’s match against Girona on Sunday due to a yellow card suspension. Without their Ballon d’Or midfielder, Los Blancos lost 2-1 at home after taking the lead in the 25th minute through a Casemiro strike. Real Madrid could not find the all-important insurance goal and would concede twice to 15th placed Girona in the second half to get struck down at the Bernabeu. Sergio Ramos was sent off in injury time as his side now fall nine points behind La Liga leaders Barcelona; meaning the race could be all but over for Real Madrid with 14 matches remaining.
Both Ivan Perišić and Marcelo Brozović got the start for Inter Milan on Sunday and played the full match in a 2-1 victory over Sampdoria. In the 73rd minute, Perišić helped break the deadlock with a beautiful assist to Danilo D’Ambrosio after walking the goal line and sending a perfect ball to his Inter teammate for the goal. With the win, Inter Milan sit comfortably in third place in Serie A.
Perišić Assist 1:35
Expect to see more of 20 year-old Josip Brekalo this year, not only for Wolfsburg, but for the Croatian national team as well. Brekalo had a another solid game for his German side on Saturday as they defeated Mainz 3-0; bringing them up to sixth place in the Bundesliga table. Brekalo received an assist in the match after making a simple pass, but teammate Maximilian Arnold did all the work for the fourth minute goal. Brekalo received a yellow card and played 78 minutes in the win.
Kalinić concedes twice before halftime
Croatian #1 Lovre Kalinić conceded two goals in the last five minutes of the first half Saturday as his Aston Villa side lost 2-0 to West Brom. Both goals were perfectly placed with the second coming off the post. Kalinić was taken off at halftime due to a minor head injury but it doesn’t look serious.
“He’s caught one on the head and suffered a bit of dizziness, so we’ve had to bring him off. I don’t think it’ll be one that keeps him out for long, but I need to speak with the medical team.” -Villa medical staff
How does Atletico Madrid beat Juve? Allegri should go.
Za Dom i Josip Brekalo
It would be interesting to see Kovacic tried out at right back in a friendly, but we are unlikely to see that. Rog would be the one to make that transition, and another call-up for Bartolec is also likely.
Kovacic is best suited to play for Barcelona: they all play soft at Barca, they play tiki-taka just like Kovacic, and no one player is responsible for anything since they basically all play as midfielders.
Our top midfielders are Modric, Rakitic, and Brozovic, with Badelj up there as well (a highly underrated player, in my opinion, whose presence might have brought us a victory in the world cup final, albeit a low-scoring snooze-fest). Next in line are Rog (ran our whole team against Jordan), Vlasic, and Brekalo. That puts Kovacic in the same class as Bradaric and Pasalic. Those are three very good players, but they are not yet at the top level, perhaps still stuck at U-21 stardom instead of world cup finalist material.
Kante over Kovacic all day every day. Dudes an animal. Jorginho doesn’t impress me. Too soft as well.
He was soft in defense against United. Didnt track his man on the one goal and he’s soft in the tackle. Modric Rakitic Brozovic Badelj all stringer in the tackle. He’s not terrible but I’ve given up on him being anywhere near a star.
A bit harsh? Maybe. I agree that hes not worth near the money thats been thrown around for him. Kante is on a total different level for both club and country. Hes a premiere defensive mid that can take the sting out of and turn the flow of a game in an instant (although our midfield had him spinning in circles in the final). Something Kovacic has not done yet, other than a couple of runs in a playoff game at home against Iceland. I hope im wrong and he turns it around, but I have seen no signs of it. And if people think that once Modric retires, that Kovacic is gonna run our midfield, I have a feeling we are gonna be missing out on a lot of tournaments.
Let’s not get carried away.
Kovačić is a good midfielder. He’s just not a complete midfielder that we all want him to be (scoring goals and creating havoc in the opponent’s third like we want him to). He’s excellent in defense and for teams who want to dominate possession.
Kanté and Jorginho are no better than Kovačić.
The real issue with Kovačić is his salary is too high, and it limits his suitors. His transfer fee is also a bit too high as well.
There’s no way he’s worth 60 million if guys like Perišić and Rebić are worth 40 million.
I always said that Chelsea won’t spend that much money on keeping him (especially if they already have similar players in Kanté and Jorginho, with other pressing needs in other areas).
He’s a good midfielder, but he needs to go to a team that is in need of his specific skillset AND are able to pay for it.
Our National Team (which is loaded with midfield talent) has got to be the worst National Team for him to play on. On top of that, he only plays for top club teams as well. If he was English or Colombian, he would start for his National Team every game. Same goes for if he played on a solid (but not elite) club team like Sevilla.
He needs to take a pay cut, or hope Real drops their asking fee…or he will be a fringe starter or bench player like Isco or one of those players.
Poglavnik, I agree about Kovacic. This guy is so overrated! Chelsea will not buy him from real.
@DREK you’re being a bit harsh but he is missing something that much is obvious.A shot for starters…I’ve seen hi school girls with more of a cannon than this guy.
It will never happen but I actually think he would be more useful to a team at right back.
His defense has improved greatly over the years though he was exposed against MAN U yesterday .He has the quickness to keep up with most forwards and going forward he would be a nightmare with his slalom runs and beating defenders 1V1
He would need to work on his crosses considering he has played centrally his entire career and I don’t ever recall him inswinging from the flank
It’s a crazy idea but I think it would work for him.
Kovacic has beautiful moves and linked with the right team he could be good. He just can’t score. He would be a terriable wing man at a club since he cant score.
You took the words right out of my mouth. Kovacic is more useless now than ever. He’s constantly been given chance after chance and he’s gone nowhere but backwards and he’s surrounded by loads of talent. Has absolutely no instinct or initiative. Looks scared when the ball comes near him. He doesn’t deserve to sniff the bench of these teams he’s been on and yet he’s getting crazy minutes for a guy that has done ABSOLUTELY nothing. Way overrated and waste of money and national call-up.
Kovacic must have the world’s greatest agent. How he’s played for Inter Real Madrid and Chelsea boggles my mind. Not since his first season at Inter has he looked worthy of any of those clubs.
He’s been shit since Lukaku shook him off like a fly.
Truthfully I hope he never gets another National team call up. Would rather some kid take his spot on the bench.
@LAKnat love that! I would personally put Brekalo as of now, but the rest of the lineup looks great.
Vlasic and Rebic could switch position!
I prefer Halilovic over Brekalo-
He was called for representative candidates training camps for National team but never chosen as a final member once the training camps were over.
What he is missing?
the reason he isn’t chosen, frankly speaking…
his name is too almighty. Because of this, when he wants a pass on the field, it’s too shaking to ask “My God” Halilovic pass it to me…
Kovacic crapped the bed again today
He does not have what it takes to succeed
He’s a pussy and vastly over rated
I like the way you are focused on the next generation.
Halilovic has been on a odyssey .. but still only 22 yrs old!
This latest loan move to Standard Liège is another opportunity to stabilize his career.
Ages 18-22 seems to be our development blind spot.
HNL is too broke to keep our boys and then they make bonehead money centric moves to clubs who have no motivation to play them.
Ok, here is the weekend round up for some our youth stars:
Pjaca: On the Bench.
Rog: On the Bench.
Halilovic: saw 15 min of action coming Off the Bench on Friday.
Coric: On the Bench.
Ok so the million kuna question is….which one of these guys will rise outta the gutter and make an impact this spring???
And I’m kinda disappointed that so far Vlasic and Brekalo are the only ones that can realistically start if called upon.
And good to see Caleta-Car get the full 90 in Marseille’s 2-0 win. With Lovren out, we need all the steel we can get in defense.
Yeah Perisic’s emphatic reaction to that goal might suggest he’s not an Icardi guy.
Forgive me for the obvious..
But it seems like Perišić and Icardi at core do not vibe with each other.
I know it’s all coming to a head now but this beef has been going on for years, probably why he checks out.
No excuse to not perform at your best but when Inter make a punk like Icardi your captain it sends a bad message.
I can watch Perišić scissors move to the left footed cross all day long!
Be great for him to start banging in some goals again.
decent perisic assist
When LBJ is not playing for the Lakers they struggle kind of like MR MODRIC for Madrid
MODRIC makes every one around him better.
@Vuki…I totally agree…these guys have lots of talent.
Toma Bašić put the ball in the net in the 2nd minute today. Good for him.
Brekalo will take Pjaca’s minutes. 😉
Maybe Pjaca likes the training regimen at Fiorentina and sees himself improving consistently and eventually getting back onto the competition field. There is all kinds of day-to-day stuff that contributes to these decisions. If he feels that Fiorentina are taking good care of him, why should he leave?
Press poppin all that BS .. when Modrić doesn’t play Real lose.
Kovačić could have been vital this campaign.
Brekalo has the ball on a string.
His Velcro touch and composure on the ball is Real!
Not sure why he doesn’t get starter minutes?
Brekalo is taking some body’s minutes for Croatia.
He needs to start for us in March.
Badelj gave Lazio a 1-0 lead at Genoa … lot 2-1.
TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR WERE ALWAYS CONSIDERED A BIG CLUB. YOU TRIPPIN BRO.
I really do not understand why Pjaca chose to stay at Fiorentina. I guess he thought they would reward him for it. The problem is, I don’t think he’s played at all since the transfer window.
I agree on Ivanusec and Moro. They should move to bigger leagues in Europe in the summer. I read Moro was going to sign for Shaktar to replace Fred until his injury with the U21s. Ivanusec was linked with a move as well to Anderlecht and I believe Sampdoria. I think Shaktar and Anderlecht would have been great destinations for them to develop for a few years and then move to even bigger clubs.
This is something all of the young talent should be doing if they truly want to develop into stars. Modric is one of the few players I can think of off the top of my head who moved to a pretty big team and succeeded quickly. However, he was older than most of the young players that leave now and Tottenham was not quite as highly rated as they are now.
Am reading Luka suspended today for yellows. Pre-game story I read suggested he was left off by choice. 2-1 loss.
Luka left off roster for Real, who are losing 2-1 at home to mighty Girona.
Brekalo looking great…his touches on the ball are golden. I’m hoping for Moro and Ivanušeć to leave the HNL soon. They are amazing talents.