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How Hajduk Split Supporters Started an Uprising in Croatian Football

Published: November 26, 2014

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A huge crisis is shaking the very foundations of football in Croatia. After Hajduk Split refused to play in the national derby against their bitter rivals, Dinamo Zagreb, the future of the league—and the federation—has been put into question. Nothing like it has ever been seen in these parts. As football fans sat down in front of their TV sets last weekend to watch the game, they could... 

Miroslav Blazevic: The ‘Coach of All Coaches’ Still Going Strong at Age 79

Published: September 21, 2014

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Miroslav “Ciro” Blazevic was one of the pioneers of the 3-5-2 formation, took Croatia to third place at the 1998 World Cup and coached four other national teams. Turning 80 later this season, he recently took over at NK Zadar, the 28th job in a coaching career that spans the best part of half a century. “My son, let me tell you the truth,” Blazevic told Jonathan Wilson for his... 

Tin Jedvaj: Meet Leverkusen’s Hugely Promising Attacking Defender

Published: September 13, 2014

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A teenage full-back who is scoring spectacular goals in the Bundesliga—is Tin Jedvaj the next big thing? In little more than two weeks—16 days, to be precise—he recorded two goals and two assists for his club. He also made his full international debut for Croatia, aged 18. But Jedvaj doing so well in an attacking sense at such a young age is not even the most interesting thing about... 

5 Hottest Teenage Prospects from Croatia

Published: August 10, 2014

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Croatia somehow never ceases to produce amazing young football talents who attract the attention of major European clubs. So who are the next wonderkids from this tiny nation marked in scouts’ notebooks? This summer, three Croatian teenagers have already made big moves. Alen Halilovic, the highly touted 18-year-old, joined Barcelona and is currently training with the first-team squad, although... 

Niko Kranjcar: What’s Next for Croatia’s "Forgotten" Genius?

Published: July 22, 2014

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Away from the limelight, far from multi-million euro glamour transfers occupying headlines worldwide, Niko Kranjcar is plotting the next phase of his career. He’ll only turn 30 next month and yet he seems way past his playing peak. Is there still time for him to revive his career and steer it to an ending his wonderful talent deserves? These days you’ll find Kranjcar training with Dynamo... 

Why Croatia Failed at the World Cup

Published: June 24, 2014

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After two very different games at the World Cup, last night’s clash with Mexico was a moment of truth for Croatia—as it turned out, the truth wasn’t very nice. Not to take anything away from Mexico, who have been great and fully deserved their success, the impression is Niko Kovac’s side had their chance at this tournament and blew it, not playing to their strengths. It was... 

Can Croatia Live Up to Captain Darijo Srna’s Promise?

Published: June 3, 2014

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Darijo Srna has seen it all. He went from rags to riches, from suffering depression and doubt to being revered. He experienced a stellar ascent and a fall from grace, triumph as well as disappointment—and now he’s ready for one more adventure. Croatia’s most capped player ever will lead the team as captain in Brazil and he says he can’t wait for the World Cup to start. “I... 

Is Croatia Emerging as a World Cup Dark Horse?

Published: May 20, 2014

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For months now, Belgium and Colombia have been on almost everyone’s lips when the subject of World Cup dark horses has been raised. So much so, in fact, that these two teams can’t even be considered dark horses anymore. They are now outside favourites, well-established football powers in the eyes of spectators with certain expectations imposed on them. It’s time to find a new unlikely... 

Will Croatia Play Without a ‘True’ Holder at the World Cup?

Published: May 15, 2014

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Croatia’s provisional squad list for the World Cup tells a story—but only if you know what to look for. Those who are really familiar with manager Niko Kovac‘s tactical leanings and the characteristics of the players in question will, however, notice one important detail: There’s only one “true” holding midfielder on that list, as reported by BBC Sport. The... 

Where Does Luka Modric Rank Among Croatia’s Greatest Midfielders?

Published: April 29, 2014

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The second leg of the Champions League semi-finals marks a jubilee for Luka Modric. When he takes to the pitch in Bayern’s Allianz Arena in Munich, he will record his 100th appearance for Real Madrid. Modric has also been a stalwart player for Croatia, and his form is the main reason for optimism among the fans ahead of the World Cup, where the team is to meet Brazil, Cameroon and Mexico—and... 

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