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Croatians Around Europe XV: Broz Assists Twice, Pongračić Still Feeling COVID Effects

January 8, 2021

Marcelo Brozović gets the ball past Roma’s Edin Dzeko



Inter Milan will be disappointed with their 2-2 draw against Roma Sunday as they conceded an 86th minute equalizer to chop the points. However, center defensive midfielder Marcelo Brozović had a huge game and was voted MOTM with assists on both of Inter’s goals. Broz will never get the proper recognition he deserves in a Croatian midfield consisting of Modrić, Perišić, and Rebic; but he plays his position better than anyone else out there. Brozović was 8/10 as he was “Always available and open to receive the ball, passed it well and whipped some nice crosses into the box. Could have levelled but saw his shot blocked. Two assists to his name, too.”



We also had an Ivan Perišić sighting as the winger played the last 15 minutes of the match. More to come on Perišić during the week as he is expected to make a move in the January transfer window; possibly to the Premier League.



Brozović assists twice for Inter



Pongračić (34) still not at 100%



23 year-old Wolfsburg defender Marin Pongračić is still not at 100% after contracting COVID in November, the Washington Post reports. Pongračić got the start for Wolfsburg on Saturday in a 2-2 draw against Union Berlin. He was at fault for conceding the first goal following a bad pass and had to be subbed out at halftime with difficulty breathing. We will monitor his status. Josip Brekalo also got the start and played 68 minutes in the draw.



Modrić family playing in the snow



There is no winter break in La Liga, however, a massive snowstorm rolled through Madrid and Luka Modrić and family did not miss an opportunity to have some fun. Unfortunately, tata still had to work as Real Madrid faced Osasuna on Saturday in a scoreless draw. Modrić was set back by the integrity of the pitch in Osasuna as “The Croat did what he could, but the game – or, to put it better, the pitch – wasn’t an ideal match for his characteristics,” AS reports. Real Madrid need to start playing catch up if they want to make a run at the title. They are currently one point behind Atletico but their city rivals have three games in hand.



Ante Kvartuč
Posted By: Ante Kvartuč 36 comments

  1. Medo says:

    Rumors have heated up in the last day that Benkovic might be going back to Celtic.
    He’s not even on the bench for cardif city in their F.A. Match today and I do believe he’s healthy…so there might be validity in the speculation.
    Let’s hope it’s true it might be just what the DR. Ordered for Big Ben!

  2. Andrej L says:

    A move to Celtic would be huge. Feel like the EPL is not the right spot to develop our young talents.

  3. Andrej L says:

    Looks like RB Salzburg is pumping out more Croatian talent than Hajduk at this rate. They supposedly just signed a 15 yo from Istra. With the development of players like Caleta-Car, Pongracic, and Luka Sucic; Salzburg seems to be an influential development club for our NT.

  4. Maminjo says:

    Rocco Zivkovic?
    Never heard of him, but Istra 1961 has never produced a talent for us, so I’d rather he develop in Salzburg.
    Shame that one of Dinamo, Rijeka or Osijek didn’t bring him on instead, but hopefully it works out.

  5. Maminjo says:

    @Medo and Andrej
    Yea, any news of Benkovic getting the eff out of England is great news for me.
    Just googled, and it’s true. It looks like they’re in talks to go to Celtic. He also seems to be healthy. He’s been posting workout images of himself that would make Soul Champ proud, doing barbell squats and boxing.
    A year or so at Celtic would be good for him. Some club from Germany or another top-5 league hopefully snaps him up.

  6. caine says:

    You left out Krama and Hoffenheim eventually thrashed…are you the new prophet in town?
    Maybe Salzburg is in love with us…hope they bring out the new Suker,Mandzo,Modric,Perisic,Rakitic,Boban list goes on

  7. Ante Kvartuč Ante Kvartuč says:

    @ caine,

    I got you guys 😉

  8. Soul Champ says:

    @ Maminjo

    Love to see our boys in peak power training.

    Seems Benkovic is heading to Belgium league?

  9. Anonymous says:

    The religion of Political Correctness has declared “Indians” offensive.

  10. Anonymous says:

    I’m going to butcher the pornographers who whored white gentile women to negroes.

  11. Maminjo says:

    @Soul Champ
    All Benkovic need to do is stay fit and healthy.
    Maybe he’s been doing something wrong with the way he trains these past few years, but he can’t be made out of glass.
    He just needs to focus on two things…
    1. Do whatever it takes to stay injury free and fully fit
    2. Once fit, run a marathon in the opposite direction of England

  12. Maminjo says:

    Those aren’t the effects of COVID. Those are the effects of mononucleosis (mono).
    The media is a little trigger happy with COVID, so it’s being blamed for everything right now…but COVID has infected many athletes so far, and few have been affected in this way. Either way, we don’t have nearly enough data to assume premature headline grabbing things like this as fact.
    Mono, however, is a scary thing for athletes and has ended many careers of promising athletes. If Pongracic is having trouble playing a full match, I would go with the proven data and assume that the mono he recently contracted is the result.
    Mario Ancic and Robin Soderling both had their tennis careers ended by it. Rebic had it prior to his Eintracht Frankfurt days, and it sidelined him for a while too, but he recovered and his career bounced back. No top athlete has had their careers ended by COVID.

  13. Maminjo says:

    Oh, I just read that the Belgian team that Benkovic is going to is actually owned by Leicester.
    Sigh. Well, hopefully he plays at least.

  14. Maminjo says:

    Rocco Zikovic, Josko Gvardiol, Luka Sucic, and Franjo Ivanovic…
    Lots of very young talent coming up the ranks.
    We cried when Boban retired, saying we’d never replace him. Now we’re crying about Luka.
    Honestly, we did well in France ’98 and WC 2018 because of a collection of quality players (not because of just one player).
    I expect us to do the same in the future.

  15. Well said Maminjo.

    With Rijeka and Osijek making strong improvements on the field and in their administration, and Primorac joining Hajduk, we should be getting and even stronger supply of talent. Greater competition in the HNL will mean players can stay with the their smaller teams and not necessarily need to go the Dinamo to get exposure. I can see the Vatreni being among the favourites for all tournaments going forward.

  16. Maminjo says:

    Hopefully Rijeka and Osijek put it into player development.
    Rijeka was catapulted when that Talijan (Volpi) came in and put money into the club. Same goes for Osijek with that Hungarian oligarch.
    They’re investing in stadiums and their first squad… But they’ve still been piggybacking off of former Dinamo youth players. Hopefully that changes, and they invest in their own youth from Slavonija and Istra/Kvarner instead of trying to buy players for their first team.
    I don’t want them to all start buying foreign players, and then get into a pissing contest of who can win the HNL.
    The goal should be to win with your own, which makes it a sustainable model for your club (developing and selling players) and country (developing your own for NT purposes).
    I can’t imagine what would happen if he had 3 or 4 Dinamo caliber youth systems in Croatia.

  17. caine says:

    @Maminjo perfect submission.
    Brozo with 2 assists…how can a DMF be giving such assists? Brozo is simply class. I read somewhere Sir Alex Ferguson had issues with corruption in Croatian football and Mamic,well Mamic is long gone so why does he veto the buying of our players…just hope he wasn’t behind Perisic’s failed transfer deal after Mourinho fought for him.
    But he has no problem with the Serbs,VERY IRONIC.

  18. Suba says:

    No hrvati should play in the uk

    They deliberately stunt or oppress their development

    They go as far as maiming our players aka Eduardo

    The only ones that kinda worked was Modric but let’s face it Luka is in a league of his own

    Za dom spremni

  19. Suba says:

    Am I allowed to mention this without my head bitten off

    Kalinic with a nice goal for Hellas Verona

  20. Poglavnik says:

    I’ll do you one better. I think it’s time to bring back Nikola Kalinic. He’s a very useful striker.

  21. ARMADA87 says:

    I think Kale has no business being in the NT discussion anymore.

  22. Slavonac from Canada says:


  23. Suba says:

    Welcome back slavonac
    I knew that would stir you up

  24. Anonymous says:

    If Nikola Kalinic can get back into some sort of form you’d be stupid to not consider him.

  25. crnkovic says:

    kalinic. pure class

  26. Eric says:

    @maminjo: that’s a good assessment if the HNL player development. If even one of those teams could echo Dinamo’s youth system, we will never be short on new talent. Plus a competitive league is good for everyone.
    Re: Kalinic…I’m still not sure that we have the full story about what happened in Russia. If he was a toxic element on the squad, he should never be called back. The atmosphere our boys had together really helped them reach the highest level.

  27. The Great Anonymous Doom says:

    Kalinić is a useful striker, but any player who doesn’t know his place has no place. Would you really prioritize Kalinić over Pjaca, Orsić, Pasalić, etc.? The attacking part of our team is a crowded field already…

  28. caine says:

    @Suba sure i know they hate us not to mention how we glued their asses to the couch,gave them a popcorn to watch Euro2008 on Tv lol.
    But Suba if our players don’t play in the PL,these ehglish pundits will say we are not good enough for EPL.our players have impressed so far in the EPL (Eduardo,Kranjcar,Corluka,Modric even forgot many)

  29. Soul Champ says:

    This Japanese player going to be 54 years old.

    Luka Modrić is at his peak at 35!

    I saw the last match.

    Benzema and Hazard didn’t do anything.

    I am convinced that Mandžukić would score goals for Reak Madrid against these low block teams.

    He just attacks that penalty area like no other.

    He has that longevity gene as well.

    All these teams can’t score when it matters.

    He needs to get back playing.

  30. Maminjo says:

    That Japanese player used to play for Dinamo
    I remember him

  31. Pero says:

    How bout dem browns!!!
    They have a Croat groundskeeper so we can chat about them!

  32. Poglavnik says:

    Good shit Brownies!
    Them and KC should be a beaut.

  33. Pero Pizdolizac says:

    Here we go Brownies, here we go, WOOF WOOF!!

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