How Did HNS President, Čačić, and Modrić Comment on Turkey Defeat?

Daniela Rogulj

Croatia lost to Turkey in the World Cup qualifying match last night in Eskişehir.

After a shocking defeat against Turkey which complicated Croatia’s almost certain placement into the World Cup in Russia, coach Ante Čačić was “satisfied” with the performance of his players, reports on September 6, 2017. 

“I’m absolutely happy with the game. My emotions were mixed because three points went to the host. I’m satisfied with the game, all we missed is a goal,” an overly confident Čačić said after swallowing a defeat that should have never been. 

“We played 90 quality minutes, we ran, controlled, dominated. But that one goal happened. We missed the calm in the end. We created a lot of opportunities, we shot, but that one goal cost us. We are still in first, this is not a tragedy, and I am happy with the way we played. This is football, we only missed that goal,” Čačić continued, which had half of the country, well, those that are still interested in the team, scratching their heads. 

And HNS President, Davor Šuker?

”Surely the situation after an unpleasant defeat is also not so pleasant, but we have to believe in the players and our coach. Turkey did what we were supposed to do – they scored – but Croatia is still the first in the group. We know that the decision will fall in Ukraine and there will be uncertainty until the last second. Four teams have the chance, but I believe we will go to Russia,” said HNS president Davor Šuker said. He continued:

“We have the capability, and we need to find our chance. We need to be positive and thank all those who have set this up. It’s easiest to be negative, and I do not particularly like calculation, but we just have to think about Finland and win,” the HNS chief said, admitting too that he is “satisfied” with his faithful and dedicated staff, despite the debacle.

One thing was clear last night: Luka Modrić, the Croatian captain, cannot carry the team himself – although he sure as hell tried. 

“We wished to be the first, but we didn’t take advantage of our chances, and as it usually happens in football, we received a goal then,” Modrić told HNS.

“Still, we depend on ourselves, and we have nothing to fear. I believe it will eventually end well. We can’t be unhappy with the way we played, but we are disappointed with the defeat. We did not deserve it,” Modrić concluded.

And finally, for the counter – what does former national team player and current football commentator Joško Jeličić think of all of this? Vecernji List reports on September 5, 2017. 

“Unfortunately, this is only a consequence as the causes are known. At least to me, since the fall of the Euro. Here it turned out that the less quality team won. Why this is the case, the man responsible for the defeat must answer,” Joško Jeličić said.

“I envy Ante Čačić because of the status he has with HNS. His predecessors had more points at this time and signed termination contracts. I’m not sure he can take us to the World Cup, and if we go, I think we will only be there as tourists,” Jeličić continued.

“We opened the game well, pressed, but when Turkey saw that they could, the goal happened. Too much of this comes down to individual moves and less team play. Modrić holds all of the strings, but he can’t do it all alone. Perišić plays for himself, Brozović for himself. This team lacks hierarchy and the quality work to come up with something called a football game and an idea. For a long time we have talked about nothing changing under this coach, and actually, it’s only getting worse. We are far from the World Cup,” Jelačić concluded. 


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