Croatia legend backs 'role model' Modric for Ballon d'Or

Annette Crawford
July 11, 2018

As he racked up the titles, including one Champions League after the other, England continued to resemble a stuck record.

Croatia's President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic is hopeful that he country's national team will make it through to semifinals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup, she told Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev in Sochi on Saturday before the Russia vs Croatia quarterfinal match.

Gareth Southgate's men have ripped up the script over a remarkable a month that now sees them preparing for a semi-final clash against Croatia.

Hosts Russia, the lowest ranked team in the tournament, scored five of their 11 goals from set-pieces on the way to the quarter-finals, their strongest showing since the end of the Soviet Union, and got past highly fancied Spain in the last 16 thanks to a penalty shootout. Something has to change and, next to me, Claude Makélélé knows it too. "They have this togetherness that is very important to have success".

Grabar-Kitarović is 50 years old, according to her official Croatia biography, and was elected Croatia's fourth president in January 2015.

Gerrard said: "I'll watch the game at my hotel". "It is not money that will play - or Ferraris or watches". We have played five games, but being exhausted can not be an alibi.

"We'd been spending a lot of time on set pieces, right down to the details, all the runs and the blocks", said midfielder Ruben Loftus-Cheek. It's down to what we do behind the scenes, what we work on in training, all the hard work to get here. "Why didn't you ask me about when I played well against him?"

"Those memories are painful and the players realise this is their time", said Bilic.

The coach, however, will have to wait and see if defender Sime Vrsaljko, who played in four of their five games, will be fit for the match after picking up a knee injury.

"Those emotions are what drive us, that is our petrol and how we have come back to a semi-final after 20 years". Modric has consistently looked better when he has played higher up the pitch and it is plain that one of England's major challenges will be to nullify him.

"England will be different opponents to Denmark, Russia or even Argentina". We want to win as a team. England's style is a bit like Manchester City's, especially with Stones who is always on the ball.

"Unbelievable!. I can't believe that we have again won in the same way".

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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