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It’s Been 291 Days…But The Vatreni Are Back!

September 2, 2020

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It will be 291 days since the Vatreni last played a match when they take the field against Portugal in Lisbon on Saturday. Croatia defeated Georgia 2-1 in a friendly on November 19th in Pula.

 

 

Since then. Ništa. Thanks COVID.

 

 

Croatia was supposed to play Portugal and Switzerland in a 4-team friendly tournament in Qatar in March. Didn’t happen. They were supposed to kick off EURO 2020 against England at Wembley in June. Didn’t happen.

 

 

And here we are.

 

 

The World Cup finalists will begin their 2020 season against Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal in their UEFA Nations League opener on Saturday at 2:45 PM (ET). The game will be televised nationally in the United States on ABC.

 

 

Luka Modrić and Ivan Rakitić will not take part against Portugal and France this month (rest). But this will be primetime for a few key Croatian players to shine amongst the brightest stars in world football; without any pressure. Let’s not kid ourselves, Nations League is not EURO or the World Cup by any stretch of the imagination. Whether Croatia wins the whole thing or gets relegated- big deal. But we do have two sexy match-ups in the next week.

 

 

Portugal are the reigning Euro and Nations League champions. As we all know, France won the 2018 World Cup.

 

 

So who is this week most important for? (in order of importance)

 

 

1. Nikola Vlašić: He will take the mantle as Croatia’s #10 once Modrić retires. The guy is only 22 years-old and is making a name for himself in Russia with CSKA Moscow. He has already scored two rocket goals from outside the box in the young season and is rumored to be courted by Russian champions Zenit St. Petersburg. He’s already the real deal and only needs to build on his confidence and game on the world stage. Let it be known, managers from all over Europe will be scouting the Croatia/Portugal match. Look for a huge game from Vlašić; which includes a goal!

 

 

2. Ante Rebić: He’s probably still cooling off from last season with AC Milan where he was a part of nearly every scoring play the Italian side had. It’s a shame EURO 2020 never took place as Croatia’s offensive core  were all on fire, individually. Rebić needs to keep the party going when he throws on the checkers again this weekend. He’s not allowed to shut down his intensity and take his foot off the pedal.

 

 

3. Andrej Kramarić/Bruno Petković: Which striker will be Croatia’s ‘go-to’ when next summer roles around? Both are battling for one starting spot with the Vatreni. Kramarić is sitting pretty in the Bundesliga at Hoffenheim but Petković can double his value with big performances in the next week. Remember, Petković is playing for Croatia and is still at Dinamo Zagreb. Which striker is best for Croatia right now? You have to go with Krama.

 

 

4. Šime Vrsaljko: Good ‘ol Šime hasn’t played much football for Atletico Madrid in 2020 and then he missed their Champions League fixtures last month because of the ‘Rona. He needs to get back on the field before the domestic season begins to get his confidence back up. When Šime runs well, Croatia runs well. We will see if Dalić gives him the starting nod or decides to go with someone younger.

 

 

Prediction: Croatia wins 2-1
 

 

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Ante Kvartuč
Posted By: Ante Kvartuč 56 comments





  1. The Great Anonymous Doom says:

    Any thoughts about formation? I imagine they will play 4-2-3-1 with Livakovic; Vrsaljko, Lovren, Vida, Barisic; Brozovic, Kovacic; Rebic, Vlasic, Perisic; Kramaric

    Brekalo, Petkovic, and Pasalic likely will come off the bench; and if they are playing with Covid substitution rules, we might also see Caleta Car.



  2. Andrej L says:

    ^ I concur

    Does anyone know if they are allowed 5 subs? It would be interesting to see who would be the 5th sub; Give Uremovic a run? Although tough to put him in front of Jedvaj unless Jedvaj and Caleta-Car start the France match



  3. Maminjo says:

    We kind of already know what we have with Jedvaj.

    I’d love to see what Uremovic could do. He’s also a couple years younger than Jedvaj, so he has more room to grow.



  4. Croatian Canadian says:

    Even these games are glorified friendlies and have no meaning. Dropping Modric and Rakitic out of our squad was a good decision by Dalic. Let’s see how our younger guys play and see the hunger to play against the last two major championship winners. We need to make a impact and show top teams like these two that we are considered the top in the world. Don’t get me wrong. Defeating England, Argentina and Germany has been impressive in our football history. But when was the last time we beat a world class team that has made a final or won a title recently. We’ve always lost to Portugal and obviously the cheater frogs. Make a statement even though it’s games no one cares about. If we can outclass these teams without our best player ever and Rakitic. We’re on a good track. Don’t wanna hear excuses “oh we had injuries, it’s a new team, our vets are taking time off” fuck off with that. This is new rejuvenated fresh talented young squad. We got players that haven’t started yet in they’re 30s lol. Just get a victory please. Ronaldo will be cherry picking and eager for that 100th international goal. I’ll be more excited about the France match. Dalic is our saviour and best coach since the Bilic period.



  5. Anonymous says:

    Also, having Skoric on the bench is bullshit. I dont care what the theory is behind it. Everyone knows its bullshit. This will only piss off more players that know they are already more qualified, and cant get a call up, especially diaspora hrvati.



  6. Maminjo says:

    @Croatian Canadian

    Re: your comment…
    “when was the last time we beat a world class team that has made a final or won a title recently”…

    Ummm, lol. I dunno, ALL of them? :)

    Italy (in Italy, right after they were runners up in WC1994)…

    Italy (in Italy, right after they won WC2006)…

    Denmark at Euro96 (complete 3-0 beatdown of Denmark, who were defending Euro champs with the same squad in their prime)…

    Germany in WC1998 (complete 3-0 beatdown of the Euro96 Champs who were also favorites for WC1998)…

    We also beat a lot of insane World Class teams who had golden generations.

    The Netherlands in 1998 were incredible. Their starting eleven was an All-star lineup and we beat them in that bronze medal game.

    We beat Romania’s golden generation in France ’98 too. That Romanian team made the quarterfinals in every tournament of the 90s and Euro2000 (despite being in the group of death). In France, they topped Colombia and England, first in their group, then they met us (and we slaughtered them that game).

    Sweden with prime Ibrahimovic, Ljunberg, Larsson, etc were also fantastic back in 2002-2006 period. We beat them twice in qualifying, despite Sweden steamrolling everyone. Sweden scored over 30 goals in that campaign and were like +26….but they couldn’t even score on us in two games.

    Beating teams like Argentina (who were WC runners up) and Spain (who were Euro winners, and with our B squad) can’t be undermined, just because a few years passed.

    Croatia was always given the “Dark Horse” label because unlike other smaller countries with good teams…Croatia actually BEATS the elite teams.

    It’s very common to see a decent team (like Poland or whoever) draw and elite team. It happens all the time. But you will almost NEVER see a team flat out BEAT teams like Germany, Italy, Argentina, Spain, England, Netherlands, etc…and Croatia does this ALL the time.

    Portugal, Brazil and France and the only elite teams we’ve never beaten, but to be fair we only met Portugal in serious game once (at Euro 2016) and that was a controversial extra time loss. Euro96 was our bench playing their stars, as we had already clinched.

    France has been the thorn as we’ve played them three times, and lost twice. Brazil we lost twice, with one being very controversial.

    Nevertheless, almost every other elite team (for the most part) has a LOSING record against us.

    That’s absolutely insane.



  7. Iggy Iggy says:

    Definitely not scared about Nations League, nah. If it was Euro 2020 i would obviously be pissing my panties but that’s nearly a year away still and as someone else said these are more or less friendlies in my book. Just don’t want any 6-0 losses this time round!



  8. Iggy Iggy says:

    Cilic through in 4 sets. Martic and Vekic still in the women’s draw too. Actually think we could have a chance to do well in women’s side this year, fingers crossed.



  9. Poglavnik says:

    Iggs you need to take that positivity you have towards our tennis players and apply it to our football team. Its not like our boys are shit. When was the last time you even had us winning a match?



  10. NBA GROUPTHINK, DUHH says:

    A group whose opinions are only lauded by others in the same group, behind a phalanx of suppression, gets sillier and sillier and sillier.



  11. Anonymous says:

    Hey Ante, you’re in the media, do me a favor, EXPLAIN to these professional athletes that doing or saying something which not only incurs no risk, but gets you multi million dollar contract from Nike and universal praise from the establishment media is NOT “taking a stand”, it’s being an establishment toady.

    EXPLAIN that nowhere on planet earth are REAL revolutionaries televised, put on talk shows, and cheered on by the establishment media.

    EXPLAIN that just before the Soviet Union collapsed, neither the media nor the CIA had any idea of it.

    EXPLAIN that rich and famous people and their heirs are not immune from PUNISHMENT for their incessant antiWhite bullshit.



  12. Anonymous says:

    It’s funny listening to these american country clubbers talk about their beloved colored companions but we all know when too many move into their neighborhoods they move out, antiWhites call it “White flight”. Then they pretend “race has nothing to do with it”. “It’s the schools and crime”. The fact that crime went up and the schools went down during the same time their beloved colored companions started moving in has always been a coincidence. Lying, traitor, antiWhite fucking rats.



  13. Kruno says:

    Hi Anonymous, By the frequency (and stupidity of your posting), I believe you may to get a job to occupy some of your time.



  14. CroatianPerson85 says:

    Ante – you’re doing a good job but these political racial talks are annoying as shit. I thought this was a sports site. I think most people on here would agree. Not all but most.

    Find another site to talk about those things. Croatia plays Portugal. That’s what this is about.



  15. Pero says:

    A fine line between being a racist and a realist , but I’m picking up what you’re putting down Anon and it isn’t dog doo doo.



  16. Medo says:

    Petar musa 2 goals for our U-21’s…where did this kid come from?
    I don’t recall him ever being mentioned on here?



  17. Anonymous says:

    @Kruno, prove what I said is “stupid” or you’re a liar.
    @CroatianPerson85, but you have no problem whatsoever w/ every single sports league shoving antiWhite propaganda down your throat.
    @Pero, What’s a “racist” exactly? Why are you reinforcing the enemy’s terminology?

    The NHL is openly proclaiming that the NHL is too white, they don’t like who they are. At least be honest about it instead of using codewords like “diversity” WHICH WE ALL KNOW MEANS FEWER WHITES.



  18. Anonymous says:

    NOTICE how the antiWhites NEVER even attempt to refute what I say? They just say “you’re stupid” duhh! Which is an admission I’m telling the truth.

    Now go tell your priest at confession that you lie thru your fucking teeth and go call God a “racist” for making all brown countries poor and for making you white, traitor.



  19. Suba says:

    Congratulations to the under 21 boys

    Great result against the grci

    Looks like our talent pipe is still producing

    Anon well done brother

    Keep the dream alive



  20. Anonymous says:

    Racist anonymous, people have attempted to engage you or “refute” you plenty of times, but you immediately blow up with name calling and cursing at them as traitors and what not. But I guess if logic was your strong suit, you wouldn’t be constantly on here ranting about illogical racist themes, or have a bright future as a crazy homeless guy yelling at people on a street corner.



  21. Anonymous says:

    Anti White anonymous, keep lying thru your teeth. AGAIN, you didn’t even attempt to refute anything I’ve said. WHAT have I said in this thread that’s “illogical”??



  22. CroatianPerson85 says:

    @Anon –

    no, there is some merit to the messages you post, like Pero posted I get what your writing but the ” every single sports league shoving antiWhite propaganda down your throat.” those leagues bug me the most.

    I see what’s happening I just prefer to talk sports on this site. I go to other websites when I want to talk about those things. Zerohedge is my go to but I find more and more outlets and websites are being compromised everyday. There is so much left leaning virtue signaling it’s crazy. Never thought the NHL would do it as well.

    Seems to me the UFC is the only one that isn’t falling for that shit hence why Dana White and many MMA fans are annoyed with Tyron Woodley he’s trying to bring that garbage into the mainstream MMA and Dana isn’t having it. He needs to beat Covington to save his ass. He’s been making way to much noise and his last 2 fights weren’t the Woodley we’ve seen before in the past. He was way too lax and had the fight taken to him.



  23. Anonymous says:

    @”CroatianPerson85″, “some merit”? Point out ONE thing I’ve said that doesn’t have merit?

    And as I’ve said COUNTLESS times, nobody complains about politics being talked about on this site UNLESS someone is saying Politically Incorrect things.



  24. CroatianPerson85 says:

    @ Anon – there are way too many anonymous posts don’t even know who is who, not going down that rabbit whole, rather just take some shrooms instead if I wanted to buzz out.



  25. Anonymous says:

    @”CroatianPerson85″, no one else says the things I say. If you don’t know what I alone said, then why are you saying that I only have “some merit”?

    My comments are at 1:37pm, 1:46pm, 3:04pm, 5:08pm, 5:14pm & 6:47pm. Prove one thing I said that is not true/doesn’t have merit.



  26. CroatianPerson85 says:

    @Anon – regarding merit I was referring to that one comment of yours I responded to.

    When your wrote – My comments are at 1:37pm, 1:46pm, 3:04pm, 5:08pm, 5:14pm & 6:47pm. Prove one thing I said that is not true/doesn’t have merit

    What times are those? Mine are showing up different in the chat? Is that Eastern standard, Pacific, Central etc? I need you to be more specific.



  27. Anonymous says:

    Just one more thing, I do not want to say that all brown countries are poor. But when you blame my race for “inequality” and use these types of antiWhite justifications to assimilate my race out of existence, we are going to call your bullshit until it ends. And I don’t care HOW it ends.

    Speech, diplomacy and war are different ways of handling disagreement, so what happens when antiWhites shut down speech?



  28. Anonymous says:

    @”CroatianPerson85″, if you know the comment you were responding to, you should know exactly what I said that doesn’t have merit. So what is it?

    I’m on the East Coast, but the times at the bottom of the comments are Pacific Standard time because that’s where Croatiansports.com are out of. It sounds like you’re weaseling your way out of this.



  29. CroatianPerson85 says:

    @ Anon – are you talking about the comment at 6:03 or 6:16? Are you trying to confuse me brother lol? I see what you’re doing. That’s eastern standard.



  30. CroatianPerson85 says:

    Hey anonymous (not sure which one) I just wanted to apologize and correct my earlier message. I was 100% in the wrong, its central time, I think, not Pacific or Eastern.

    Sometimes I get things wrong, I’m not perfect, who is.



  31. Iggy Iggy says:

    I just watched the highlights of Cilic vs that dude he beat in round 2, sorry to say, he’s fucked. He clearly has a massive, huge, irredemable injury where he can’t move.

    Makes a lot more sense the way he struggled to win those matches now, it’s embarrassing trying to watch him move, god dayum he did a good job to get this far though, despite all that. Anyway adios to him, best wishes to Martic / Vekic !



  32. ARMADA87 says:

    I’m looking forward to these games and I hope our boys take them seriously and go for a result.

    At the end of the day, Modric and Rakitic will probably hang’em up after next summer. As a group, we need to start figuring out what our team will look like, post Modric generation. We have the players to still be a top tier NT, but our identity will potentially change where the majority of our offense won’t flow through one player (Luka).

    We have a decent amount of runway to figure this out now and if anything, I’d actually prefer if Luka and other vets don’t play in Nations League that way Dalic & co. (and us fans) can get a longggg look at other guys like Vlasic, Brekalo, Petkovic, Caleta-Car, Jedvaj (at CB, not wing back) and to a lesser extent, Colak and see who in this generation is really ready to step up and become leaders on this team. Vlasic has shown quite a bit, but I want to see more from others.



  33. Eric says:

    I agree with Armada…can’t wait to see our boys step up.
    Also, it looks like Ronaldo will miss the match due to a foot infection. He is looking forward to scoring his 100th goal for the pork-chops, so its good news if he sits out this game.



  34. Medo says:

    Yes it’s confirmed Penaldo with a foot infection…apparently when he was getting a pedicure the Vietnamese chick put fire engine red instead of pink on his toe nails…he was so incensed he kicked the soaker tub,opened up a gash and got an infection.
    Those nail salons can be filthy establishments!



  35. Anonymous says:

    @”CroatianPerson85″, and STILL no one has refuted one thing I’ve said so all antiWhites like “Ed” can do is scream “racist” and “wish” us truth tellers will stop talking. Then he, you and the other traitors will assure yourselves that you are “on the right side of history”.

    Just answer this one question: How can you be loyal to Croatians and antiWhite at the same time?



  36. Anonymous says:

    If you’re calling me a “racist”, then you agree that the Croatian National team is WAY too White and should be more “diverse”.



  37. Anonymous says:

    @”ElviSS”, if BLM was simply pro-black and not antiWhite, I’d be all for it.

    And white cowards like to hide behind their nationality lest someone call them “racist” so a Greek “nationalist” must accept that the “Greek Freak” is Greek when we know he’s not. I’m mean shit, I can draw up a piece of paper saying I’m Zambian and make it “official” but the reality is I’m not Zambian.

    For example, Hitler was from Austria and never became a German citizen, he’s German as are most Austrians. There’s many non-Russians living in Russia with Russian citizenship, neither those non-Russians nor real Russians pretend this is isn’t a fact the way so many Westerners PRETEND -with an air of moral righteousness to boot!





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