Preparatory Plans Change for Croatia National Team as Doha Tournament Canceled

Daniela Rogulj

March 12, 2020 – Due to the coronavirus outbreak, the international Qatar Airways tournament in Doha, featuring Croatia, Portugal, Switzerland and Belgium, will not be played this month, the Croatian Football Federation announced.

HNS reports that the Croatian football team was due to play in a friendly tournament in Qatar’s capital Doha at the end of March and measure its strength against the national teams of Switzerland and Portugal as part of preparations for the 2020 European Championships.

However, given the emerging health circumstances around the world, the tournament was canceled. In addition to Croatia, Switzerland and Portugal, the current top-ranked national team by FIFA was due to perform – Belgium.

The Croatian Football Federation will subsequently inform the public of the plans of the first team during the national team break.

A few days ago, Qatar authorities imposed a mandatory 14-day quarantine for all travelers arriving or staying in Italy for the past two weeks, after which they closed schools and universities, so a tournament delay was expected.

Croatia coach Zlatko Dalic hoped to have two quality matches in Doha, and planned to give all players a chance and try out some systems.

“The plan is to give everyone a chance and to see the condition of all players, especially those who have been injured. The most important thing for me is to have seven days of  being together because there won’t be much time later,”  the coach said Monday after releasing the player list for Doha.

This news comes after the Croatian Football Federation announced that all Croatian league games in the country would be played without fans until March 31. 

“Taking into account the emerging circumstances regarding the epidemic of the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, today the leading people of the HNS and the relevant bodies of the Federation have re-analyzed the current situation and decided that all matches in competitions under the jurisdiction of the HNS will be played without spectators until March 31.

The new measure applies to the HT First League, Croatian Cup, 2. HNL, 3. HNL, 1. HNLŽ, 2. HNLŽ, 1. HMNL, 2. HMNL and all youth leagues under the auspices of HNS, as well as the upcoming UEFA qualifying matches that take place in Croatia.

In these competitions, only teams with their staff, senior management and officials of clubs and HNS, technical staff and a certain number of media representatives will be able to attend the matches until further notice, with all the usual measures for organizing matches.

The HNS also recommends that all county associations take the same measure in competitions under their jurisdiction.

As before, the HNS will closely monitor the development of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus epidemic and, if necessary, determine other measures to which the football family and the public will be informed in due time. The decision shall enter into force immediately and shall be valid until March 31 or the end of the representative break. The Federation will make a timely decision to continue or discontinue this measure, taking into account developments, recommendations from public health institutions, and considering, above all, the health of spectators, football players and all other actors in football.

You can find the Croatia Football Federation’s statement in Croatian here.

To read more about sport in Croatia, follow. TCN’s dedicated page.


Subscribe to our newsletter

the fields marked with * are required
Email: *
First name:
Last name:
Gender: Male Female
Please don't insert text in the box below!

Leave a Comment