Croatia will thus play against the Netherlands on June 14 in Rotterdam. Spain and Italy will meet in the second semi-final on June 15 in Enschede.
The winners of the semi-final matches will play in the final in Rotterdam on June 18, while the losers will play for third place also on June 18 in Enschede.
In the third season of the Nations League, Croatia reached the final tournament and was the only debutant in this mini-tournament. Croatia went to the final four after finishing first in a group against defending champions France, Denmark, and Austria.
Croatia was impressive in the third edition of the Nations League after poor results in the first two editions. After opening against Austria with a shock 3:0 defeat in Osijek, Croatia still had to face the national teams of France and Denmark. Dalić had to apologize to the fans, and there was little belief in this Croatia after the debacle against Austria.
The show at Poljud in front of 30,000 fans started Croatia’ss revival in the Nations League. A draw against the then-current World Champions, France, was a sign that Croatia could turn everything around. In the end, Croatia defeated Denmark twice, one of the best European teams then. For the first time in history, Croatia also beat France at Stade de France in front of more than 70,000 fans and confirmed their spot in the final tournament with a victory against Austria in Vienna.
Dalić commented on Croatia’s semi-final opponent:
“We will play against the most difficult opponent, the hosts, who will play in front of a full stadium and led by a new coach. The Netherlands is a truly great team. However, whichever team we draw, we would be playing against a strong opponent, as all four teams are in the top ten in the world. We know what our goal is, a place in the final, and we will try to achieve it. The Netherlands has a new coach, and is very good, especially in defense. They have young, powerful players, and they will play in front of their audience, but I also expect great support from our fans in Rotterdam. A big match awaits us, it will be a big challenge for us, but we will be ready, and I expect our victory,” said Zlatko Dalić.
The first semi-final match will be played on June 14 in Rotterdam at 20:45, and the second in Enschede on June 15 at 20:45. The game for third place will be played on June 18 in Enschede at 15:00, and the final is the same day in Rotterdam at 20:45. It was decided in advance that the Netherlands would play its semi-final match in Rotterdam.
The Croatian Football Federation delegation in Nyon included assistant coach of Croatia Vedran Ćorluka, team manager of the national team Iva Olivari, and official spokesperson Tomislav Pacak.
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