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What if Modrić went to Chelsea?

March 20, 2012


Photo: COYS



Chelsea wanted it. Luka Modrić wanted it. But Tottenham would not sell their little Croatian magician. Everything is ‘hunky dory’ at White Hart Lane at the moment, with Spurs on track to make their second Champions League appearance in three years and a possible FA Cup to cap off their campaign, however there was a time in August 2011 when Modrić and Spurs chairman Daniel Levy did not see eye to eye. Modrić claims Levy promised him in a gentleman’s agreement that if a club came calling with big pockets, Levy would cash in on his midfield maestro. But when Chelsea came knocking for Modrić, no deal was made. 


Where would the two clubs be if the switch was made? Could Modrić have saved Andre Villas-Boas’ job at the sinking ship that is Chelsea this season? Would Tottenham be in line for another Champions League berth? As it stands right now, Tottenham and Arsenal would round out England’s top-four with Chelsea looking in from the outside. However, with 10 games left in the campaign, all is still to play for as Chelsea sit only three points behind Arsenal and four behind Tottenham. 


Was Modrić the wild card that kept these clubs’ Champions League fates in hand?




Modrić in hypothetical Chelsea blue 



Modrić may not compile many goals and assists throughout the season, but he is clearly the man, behind the man, behind the man in any offense he dictates. He runs the entire midfield of Croatia and Tottenham, spraying balls all over the field and creates solid scoring opportunities out of thin air. The man is invaluable and it will be interesting to see where Modrić plays after Euro 2012. Harry Redknapp may take the England coaching job and Gareth Bale may be out the door as bigger opportunities await. Should Tottenham have a fire sale this summer, Modrić is sure to go.


Chelsea and Manchester United have been knocking on the door for the services of the 26 year-old, but we can only imagine what other offers there will be. Could Modrić be brought into a less physically demanding Spanish league to play for Barcelona, replacing an aging 32 year-old Xavi in midfield? 


Where does Luka Modrić belong next season? Will he finish what he started in North London?




Modrić at his best


Ante Kvartuč
Posted By: Ante Kvartuč 124 comments

  1. olly says:

    modric should stay with Spurs next season if they make it in Champions League. If they keep Bale, they will be looking for one super striker next season like Higuain maybe and they were become a more potent team. They also need a centre back. I think Chelsea will look at Eden Hazard and Wesley Sneider for the creative midfield position. They may come a little cheaper than Modric as Lille know they have to sell and Sneinder may have had enough now at Inter.

  2. Josko Balaban says:

    Manchester United. Modric is a natural replacement for Paul scholes. He fits the united Midfield perfectly, I dont think he would fit the Chelsea 4-3-3. United is the place for him and Sir Alex has made it no secret that he admires the midfield maestro.

  3. Kreso says:

    I agree that while Bale stays Spurs is a good option while still in the champions league position, for another season at least.

  4. Rob I says:

    I agree with Josko.

    Man Utd is the best fit for both player and club. Luka distributing the ball to the flanks to Nani and Young.
    Then the class of Modric feeding Rooney, unstoppable.
    Modric doesn’t cause dramas in the dressing room so i can see united putting a big bid for Luka. I think that Fergie was being respectful to Harry and that’s why he didn’t buy him last summer.

    Luka gets the captains armband and tells Vidic to F#@k off!!!

  5. Robi19 says:

    Apparently if Redknapp leaves, Spurs owners have stated, “name your price”, to Jose Mourinho. Interesting to say the least. If the special one comes, stay. He will bring more pieces to the squad. I can’t see Luka at another club. I hate United and Chelski.

  6. Marky Mark says:

    I had a feeling United would snatch Modric last summer transfer window, but i am almost certain they will get him this summer. United have a history of buying Tottenham’s top/high skilled players in the recent years (Berbatov, Carrick). Fergie has already praised Luka and he is what United are missing (even though they are in first place).

    If Harry leaves soon, which is inevitable, I think Modric is going to go soon after for sure.

    With Luka in the middle of the park, Young/Nani/Valencia on his wings, Rooney and Hernandez/Welbeck up top, they will be unstoppable (as much as it hurts to say that because i hate United).

  7. ARMADA87 ARMADA87 says:

    Personally, I don’t care where he goes. As long as Luka starts some place and can continue to grow as a player and leader, it doesn’t matter to me much, since I’m not a huge EPL fan.

    I see it through a NT lens; I hope he continues to rack up accolades, become more mature and more of a leader for the NT.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I think he’ll leave the Spurs. He’ll go to Man U. Hopefully he can learn something from the brilliant Ferguson. Redknapp has shown to know very little when it comes to making the best of the players he has. If Mourinho joins the Spurs then I hope Modric stays. He’s a coach who knows best how to make the most of his players.

  9. JerseyCro says:

    Real Madrid

    Anybody except Manchester United, Ferguson will force him to retire from the NT like he did Berbatov, Vidic, Park when they still have plenty to give

  10. Toronto Croatia Toronto Croatia says:

    I don’t care where Modric goes but I want to see him playing for a WORLD CLASS club. A soccer career might not last very long and every great player should want to play for the most prestigious clubs.

    I do like Tottenham, I think they’re an exciting club to watch….however it seems that every time Tottenham needs to perform against big clubs they go from Contenders to Pretenders.

    Get Luka to a world class club, thats where he belongs.

  11. Ziva Istina says:

    @JerseyCro…..good point about Ferguson. But, if I was a coach at a big time club I also would make that same request from my players. If possible, I would add an extra 15% in the salary/wages if they agreed not to play for their national teams or at the very least refused call ups to meaningless friendlies.

    I really don’t care where our guys play as long as they show up and perform for the repka. There is no easy formula that works. We have seen it in the past were guys playing at top-tier club had mixed results playing for the repka. i just want them healthy and being able to perform for the national side. Asanovic is the perfect example. Always excelled for the repka, but had mixed results at the club level.

  12. Vedran from Milwaukee says:

    He goes nowhere, period. Harry knows the lad’s value and won’t sell him, UNLESS Chelsea offer 60 mil pounds. Right now Tottencrap are in a CL slot and have good talent around him, so that’s a positive. The downside is, they are going to need a good ST next season, and I doubt Adebajerk is gonna be willing to take a pay cut, thus, IF Tottenham do send him to Chelsucks, I believe that they would want Torres or Sturridge in return.

  13. IvicA says:

    I’m for whatever scenario produces the best for our national team. Whether that’s ManU, Barca, Spurs, or Arminia Bielefeld, I don’t care (but this is impossible to determine).

    However, a part of me wants to see Modric go for some record transfer fee to Man United…or to have Mourinho come to Spurs and take the EPL title with Modric hailed as best player of the best team. It would be cool to have a Croatian name go in the books for something like that.

  14. Mihovil Mihovil says:

    @ JerseyCro

    “Anybody except Manchester United, Ferguson will force him to retire from the NT like he did Berbatov, Vidic, Park when they still have plenty to give”

    Bingo! You can add Paul Scholes and Eric Cantona to that list as well. Man U is the worst team Luka could go to in regards to his national team career. Hands down the worst!

    I would really love to know why there is this raging hard-on for the EPL? On a global perspective, I would say the best teams in the world are Spain, Germany, Holland, Brazil, and Argentina. Give or take. There can be others but those are the big boys right there.

    Germany – 1 EPL player
    Spain – 3 EPL players (if you want to throw Pepe Reina in go ahead but he never plays for Spain)
    Holland – 5 EPL players (Nigel de Jong, what a hack, fits right in!)
    Brazil – 2 EPL players (they have others, but they have not been called up for quite some time.)
    Argentina – 3 EPL players

    If the EPL was so great, than how come the best teams in the world don’t have their best players playing in the best league? If it was the best league in the world they would all be playing in the EPL. The big debate/discussion around watering holes is who is better Messi or Ronaldo? The two best players in the world do not play in the league that is “apparently” the best league in the world. All I have to say is people please “Don’t believe the hype!”

    For my money the two best national teams right now are Spain and Germany. There could be an argument and I would agree with that but I am using these teams as an example primarily. So, the two best teams in the world and “4” players from those two teams who play in the EPL. It does not seem to bother Spain or Germany any and yet a total of four players. On another tangent, when was the last time England won a world cup or did anything that could be considered tremendous? The ultimate choke artist team and yet apparently they have the best league with the best players the world has to offer? lol! The two best players in the world play in Spain. If that does not tell you people something I don’t know what does.

    EPL = Hack/Goon league personified! (60% of the league is goons and hack play and I am being generous.)

    If you had/have the chance to watch Jelavic play against Sunderland in the FA Cup game from last Saturday you will see what I mean. Goon football at its finest.

    If I could pull the strings on Luka’s career he would be out of the EPL yesterday. That will always be my final answer Alex. He has already broken his leg in this league and I have a bad feeling about it happening again. But I am hoping to the highest level humanly possible to be wrong but something just does not feel right about it. For the people who say there is potential for Luka to get hurt in any league that is true. However, the percentages are much much higher in the EPL as it has happened already.

  15. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:

    I do think that Modric would fit in quite nicely at Manchester United as a replacement for the aging Ryan Giggs. However, the pressure would be on him for producing after coming over for 40-50 million pounds.

    I could care less about a “record transfer fee” as long as Luka is playing 90 minutes for a top 15 team in a top 3 league. So far, Tottenham fits. Why fix something if it isn’t broken?

    From a personal standpoint, I never liked ManU or Chelsea.

    Sometimes players are always looking to upgrade, whether that be financially or to a bigger club. In the end you cant have it all.

    Someone made a good point that Ferguson tries to force his players to retire from the national team. A Luka Modric comes around once every 20 years for Croatia.

  16. Nate says:

    Damn it, as a Chelsea fan this is extremely difficult. Here’s what I’m thinking.

    Stay at Spurs? No. Rednapp is likely to leave. It’s a selling club. Bale will be gone. Their success can also be seen as a down year for Arsenal, Chelsea, and Liverpool.

    Man U- I agree with the sentiment above. He would flourish there, but would fade from the National Team. F that! No to Man U.

    Barca- The fear is that he rides the bench. Even then, he would improve by being surrounded by world class players. I’m no Barca fan, but if we could claim Barca had a Croatian engine I’d be happy with that.

    Chelsea- It all depends on who they hire this summer. I was Pissed when Chelsea fired Ancelotti. In his first season, won the FA Cup and the EPL, and set an EPL record for goals. Year two wasn’t as good, but can largely be attributed to Lampard going down during “the difficulty monent” and not having a midfield replacement. That problem still exists, and had Chelsea signed Modric I think he would have saved AVB. Bottom line, Chelsea is a mess. The roster is aging and the replacements haven’t stepped up. My advice to Modric is to wait and see who the manager would be, and even then only go if Chelsea sign The Special One back. World Cup is right around the corner and we can’t have our best player stuck in a bad situation. So as it stands now, no to Chelsea.

    Verdict (as of now) – If he could start immediately at Barca, go there. If not, stay put and play in Champions League. Cross the Rednapp bridge when we come to it. It’s easier to leave Spurs once than to move twice.

  17. Ante Kvartuč Ante Kvartuč says:

    Let’s narrow this down a bit using a standard deduction technique. Unless Arsenal completely implodes down the stretch, only Tottenham OR Chelsea will have a Champions League place next season. Surely, Modric would not stay with Tottenham a second straight season with no CL and I would imagine that Spurs would have a mini fire sale with Mourinho not coming to the club. If it the table stays this way with Chelsea in fifth, and remember they play Manchester City tomorrow, they might finish outside a CL spot unless they of course win the whole thing this year.

    I don’t see Modric moving to a club where there is no CL football where he can stay put and reap the rewards of his own doing. Barca may come calling, but who is to say that even Modric can crack first XI football consistently at Camp Nou?

    Manchester United seems like a no-brainer if they pull the proper bid. However, I care more for Croatia Modric than ManU Modric. We don’t need his head being tinkered with in Manchester…but it would be nice to see him legitimately play for a title. (Also better TV coverage for us all since they put on even the worst opponents vs. ManU.)

    In the end, he should stay at White Hart Lane (only if they clinch a CL spot) and finish what he and his buddies started there. Tottenham are 2 signings (striker, defender) away from not only becoming a threat for the English title, but possibly a long run into CL as well. Being in CL, Spurs will have more money to raise current player salaries to keep them there and bring in new blood too.

    Question: Would we be having this discussion if Modric never played for Croatia ever again?

  18. Slavonac from Canada says:

    @ Mihovil – tell me the table in Spain…Real, Barca…and then…how far down is the 3rd and 4th place teams…thats why the Spanish league isnt intersting. yes, they have 2 of the best teams in europe…but after them who is competitive? the 3rd place team is 20 points behind…and its like that almost every year. germany is definitely a more balanced league but I think most players respect the popularity of the EPL and prefer to play there, also…they pay well in England!

  19. CroatHrvat says:


    I am fed up of hearing this absolute trash. People are so quick to blast the Spanish league claiming there is only two good clubs and the rest of them are useless. Athletic Bilbao just slapped up Man United in the UEFA Cup, while Sporting Lisbon took Man City to the cleaners. Man United got beat properly by Benfica aswell as FC Basel in the group stage of the Champions League whilst Man City got destroyed in Munich by Bayern and taken out in Italy by Napoli. I am fed up of hearing about how great the EPL is when the top two can’t even beat anyone from outside the EPL. Chelsea struggled against Napoli and I’ll be very surprised if they do well against Benfica. Arsenal are trash, so long as they start players like Walcott and Gervinho they will never be a serious threat. Tottenham are hit and miss, personally I think Redknapp is a great at man management but lacks any tactical insight into the game. Chelsea are on the ropes, struggling with AVB but have won all their games under Di Matteo, however that is more likely to be just coincidence. Liverpool are unbelievably poor, their policy of buying all these English youth players is costing them dearly, Steward Downing + Andy Caroll + Jordan Henderson = £70m, spare me the joke. As far as I am concerned the EPL has lost it’s prestige and class, it has become a low quality division and so long as it is dominated by £££ then the quality will fall further and further, hence how bad the England National team is.

  20. Matthew Lebo Matthew Lebo says:


    It’s true, it’s true. Italy went from a pretty trashy place last year to a much more promising place this season. Spain has always been a toss up for me. Another thing that attributed to the shift is that the great players got fed up playing in an English system that revolved around strength instead of skill. You have guys like Ronaldo, Mascherano, Fabregas etc who all did fine in the EPL, but who really excel in a place that understands their game.

    Money and TV Rights have also helped turned the the game into more of a business than an actual game. The fans are now pretty terrible, as most of the games sound like church cathedrals compared to games in Germany, Spain, and Italy. etc etc.

  21. JerseyCro says:

    Barcelona and Real Madrid are the two best teams in the world, you can’t expect anybody below them to compete with them. Unlike in England, the financial distribution is not equal as well.

    The top 6-7 in La Liga is better than what the mainstream (English) media portray them to be.

  22. Slavonac from Canada says:

    @ CroatHrvat – I didn’t trash the Spanish league I simply said its not interesting…and its highly predictable. you are comparing UEFA v Champions league…to several teams its a mean nothing competition. they play too many games as it is so I highly doubt there is much emphasis on that tourney vs their own league and FA cup. I also said Germany is a more balanced league but even so, I believe most players would rather play in the EPL because of its popularity and for the money…maybe the EPL is losing its prestige but I’d rather watch Jelavic play with Everton over Rakitic at Sevilla…at least the outcome is less predictable!

    I know the Spanish league plays a nicer brand of soccer and I also know the EPL has lost quality in recent history but there is no way that anyone can tell me La Liga is a better league…I’ll make a prediction…Real will win this year and Barca will next…tell me who will win the EPL this year and next? thats all I’m saying here!

    Harry Redknapp…I already said this several times before…he’s a players coach with limited strategical and tactical knowledge…he has proven his lack of professional quality and understanding these last few weeks…just when he needed to prove his worth he shit the bed…that was pure lack of knowing where to use his best players so in my books he’s a little better than the average coach!

    Italy has a better league this year but the problem is and has been that the league is corrupt and you never know when a game was sold or not! thousands of Italians are still skeptical about Juve, Inter and other teams…so just for that very real reason I can’t give two shits about a league where there most prestigious teams are involved in bush league scandals…yeah…its nice to see napoli doing well since I used to follow them religiously during the late 80’s and early 90’s but I can’t handle following a league where the mafia controls the outcome of a game!

    Germany is the best league in Europe and has gained ground on all the other Europen leagues…I guess if it were broadcast more regularly like it was several years ago it would capture more North American fans…I watch when I can and when its available…I don’t have the time to search the internet for a feed on some website…so until the games are easily accessible I’m gonna say the EPL is my best choice between of Spain, Italy and England! Its the league where I can watch a few Croats play and whether you like it or not…Man City, Man U, Chelsea, Liverpool, Everton…are still more interesting than Sevilla, Valencia, Atletico…

    ohh and CroatHrvat…what exactly did I say that was “absolute trash”? I am a person who has appreciated soccer from several countries…i used to enjoy watching some teams in Portugal…I watched French soccer when almost nobody here paid attention…I watched the Argentinian league for years…I know what is and isnt trash dude…your comments about Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea…are all valid but in all honesty…its part of evolution and its healthy for the sport…I’d prefer to see some teams go through growing pains and struggles rather than have the same 2 teams healthy and winning their league every single year…a competition should be about fighting to be the best and not always knowing you will be the best…whats so interesting about that?

  23. Ziva Istina says:

    Good back-and-forth on the discusion about the quality of the leagues.

    I really don’t care what the bottom half of various leagues look like. I don’t watch matches when bottom half team play each other. I prefer to watch the big boys (Real, Barca, Man U, Man City, Arsenal, Chelsea, Bayern etc….) because they usually are the most entertaining matches. The only time I will go out of my way to watch the minnows play is at the end of the season when they are battling against relegation.

    Yes, La Liga is not competitive when you look at the standings of the top two and everyone else. But, I’ll still watch Barca and Real play anyone regardless of other matches going on at the same time.

    The reason many people seem to think the EPL is the best league is because it is presented the best on TV. You factor in the common language and the high quality of the TV production.

    Personally, I thinkt he Bundesliga from top to bottom is the best league to watch in terms of quality. I think the EPL is the most exciting to watch.

  24. CroatHrvat says:

    @ Slavonac

    Take it easy man. You make some good points too. By calling your previous statement ‘absolute trash’ I was just being a bit dramatic. All I have to say on the matter is that for a neutral, for a fan of football, for someone who wants to sit down and watch good quality players and teams, please don’t tune in to the EPL. But you are right, very right, I’d rather watch Jelavic at Everton than Rakitic at Sevilla.

  25. TheGoldenChild says:


    It might be run by mafiosos, but it was one of the least boring leagues to watch when you’re looking at the entire league. The diving is what really used to bother me about Italy, but it’s actually died down a bit. They have a solid number of teams with a handful of good players that make most matches entertaining.

    I like that you mentioned Rakitic at Sevilla vs Jelavic and Everton. I’ve been following the Spaniards for a good part of a year now and I usually fall asleep before most of their games finish. Sevilla are just atrocious this year, so that could have something to do with it. Like you guys said, it’s the top tier teams that play the beautiful game. When it comes to the teams from mid table down, it’s pretty hard to watch.

  26. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:

    Hey guys, sign up under “forums”. From there you will be able to add a picture/avatar that will show up every time you comment. Also, you will have access to all the comments on one list. Don’t worry, no one will have access to any of your info including us. Those that want to stay anonymous will still be anonymous. Only, now we will know you by name(that you make up) and picture(that you chose). It will give the website some character and color.

    Also, shoot us an email or comment that you have signed up. Pictures have to be approved and we wont get a signal every time someone new signs up.


  27. Mihovil Mihovil says:

    @ Slavonac from Canada

    Excellent post as usual!

    “@ Mihovil – tell me the table in Spain…Real, Barca…and then…how far down is the 3rd and 4th place teams…thats why the Spanish league isnt intersting. yes, they have 2 of the best teams in europe…but after them who is competitive? the 3rd place team is 20 points behind…and its like that almost every year. germany is definitely a more balanced league but I think most players respect the popularity of the EPL and prefer to play there, also…they pay well in England!”

    The Spanish league is not as bad as everyone is making out to be. At least not in my eyes. They are going through a bit of a transitional period right now but they have the two best teams in the world and they play a better style of football in their league. When it comes to the EPL don’t believe the hype. My points are twofold:

    1 – The EPL is overrated.

    That is all I am saying. I never said that they do not have good teams or good players or not to watch the league. What I am saying is the league is overrated. Also, I can tell you who will win the Premiership next year. It will be either Man U, Man City, Chelsea or Arsenal. So we can add two more teams to the EPL list versus the Spanish list. Bale and Modric will be sold by Tottenham.

    2 – I watch the EPL because of nationality.

    At least for me. My viewpoint is based on our national team players. Translated. This is just a personal opinion, but I am more concerned about our national team and players than the leagues and other players. I watch and put up with the EPL to watch them. Right or wrong that is what I do.

    “I know the Spanish league plays a nicer brand of soccer and I also know the EPL has lost quality in recent history but there is no way that anyone can tell me La Liga is a better league…I’ll make a prediction…Real will win this year and Barca will next…tell me who will win the EPL this year and next? thats all I’m saying here!”

    Nicer brand of soccer. Where do I sign? Also, Hypovitaminosis D would drive anyone crazy playing in England. Ask Carlos Tevez.


    The “long ball” game is more boring to me and the goons are more boring to me than the quality of play in the Spanish league. The best “players” in the world do not play in the EPL. Messi and Ronaldo are not the only ones. The EPL has great players, but the better players are playing elsewhere and there is a reason for this. Also, there is less talent coming into the EPL as of late because they know now how brutal of a league it is. Players want to prolong the lifespan of their career. Look at Ronaldo and Fabergas. They did their time and got out. Money was and is a factor but if you offer either player the same amount of money, huge absorbent amounts of money, they will take the Spanish league over the EPL and never look back and I do not blame them. They went to the EPL to start their careers because they were bought by Man U and Arsenal respectively. You can talk about money all day long and it is a factor, but if you cannot walk because you have a broken leg or if you are turning 30 and your ankle and shins are destroyed than it makes a difference. Fabergas broke his leg in the EPL as well. Sport is business and business is sport, I understand that, but it does not mean because the EPL throws out the most amount of money that it is the best league. Do you honestly think that Van Persie will stay in the EPL? Not going to happen. Do you think that Neymar is going to go to the EPL? Nope.

    In the EPL you have the top level teams, after that it is a joke really. I used to be the person that always stuck up for the EPL. I used to say things like, “it is a tougher place to play”, “players don’t dive as much”, “they have the best league”, and “the league is really exciting”. I don’t think those thoughts anymore and on one point in particular it is goonish translated.

    The Bundesliga is where it is at. High quality football, fans, and stadiums. Italy is getting much better as well. UEFA is corrupt as hell so to even go further would be redundant. Not that I forgive Juventus for what transpired, I do not, but when I see a ref miss a “blatant” handball in the box when France plays Ireland in a WC 2010 playoff qualifier than I have to wonder what the bigger picture is? UEFA & FIFA are as corrupt as they come. Period.

    Luka Modric going to Man U is not a good thing for our National team. You can take that to the bank and cash it in. I don’t want him in the EPL, but if he has to stay, than stay @ Tottenham. This will not happen either. If anyone should not be in the EPL it is this guy! This guy can show and do so much more, not that he has not shown a tremendous amount as he has, but he can do much more in another league. For the record, Redknapp is a tactical idiot!

    I say all this Slavonac knowing full well that you have forgotten more about football than I know. I used to watch the EPL like there was no tomorrow. I watch it now to see how our players are doing and to keep up with our opponent’s players to see what they are up to.

    @ CroatHrvat

    “All I have to say on the matter is that for a neutral, for a fan of football, for someone who wants to sit down and watch good quality players and teams, please don’t tune in to the EPL.”

    Exactly. What quality after the top 6 or 7 teams???? I thought there were 20 teams in the league?


    Lukica uzasan danas a kranjcar mislim da triba manje papiti i vise vjezbati! Jelavic nema nikog da mu lopu dade ali trudi se!

  29. ARMADA87 ARMADA87 says:

    In HNL news that no one expect Dalmatinci should really care about…

    Hajduk handed Rijeka their asses today at Kantrida 3-0, with a brace from Vukusic. At least all you Torcida faithful have something to cheer about now.

    In related news – Balakov to Klaiserlautern and Rijeka is looking to field a Croatian NT ‘B’ reject team by going after Budan, Mijatovic, Drpic, Bosjnak, etc.

    That is your HNL roundup for today. Stay classy, Split. Fuckers.

  30. Slavonac from Canada says:

    @ Mihovil…uffff…I like your post dude…you’re definitely a smart and good guy! I respect the fact you may not agree but you respond intelligentally, factually and without insults…bravo majstore!

    now…onto to Robin VP…ummm…my opinion…if he leaves its not because of the shit quality of the league or because another league is better…I think its because his manager has lost his mojo and his team has lost their competitive edge, quality players and still believe they can win trophies by competing with kids from the academy…he wants to win now and not wait for Wenger to pull his head out of his ass! Robin doesn’t have such a wonderful reputation in his personal life and several coaches have noted the difficulty of coaching him…so for that reason I think he is and was loyal to Arsenal…maybe not for long though!

    I agree with almost everything else you said Mihovil…EPL has dipped, Bundesliga is currently the best in several categories…but like Ziva said earlier…its just easier and more accessible to watch EPL…a lot of money has been spent on how it is presented on TV…marketing!

    I still cant watch many teams in La Liga other than Real and Barca…yeah…of course they play incredible…but jebiga, anything other than a derby in that league is meaningless…at least in the EPL the rivalries are more pronounced and the announcers seem to get me more interested! I wanted to jump through the tv and kick the shit outta Martin Taylor when he broke Dudu’s leg…and I still see some pretty ugly tackles week in and week out…I guess it will always be part of the English football…you have no idea how many times I’ve heard a limey scream across the field at his teammate “get fucken stuck in mate!!!” during my soccer years! Its what defines them as a soccer Nation…thats why I cant stand there ways of playing…but their teams are made up of internationals that I find worth watching…at least the top teams!

  31. IvicA says:


    I still have faith that a healthy Ante Vukusic could be a solid striker for the repka one day.

    Even during this injury-plagued season he’s still managing over 0.8 goals per 90 minutes.

    We really need some young strikers. Hopefully Ante finishes the season strong, gets some notice, and it works out for us with him.

  32. Dan says:

    Thank god Balakov left, he was contracted until 2013 and was bound to be sacked by the end of the season. This is a huge relief for Hajduk financialy. Hopefully new coach Miso Krsticevic will keep the free flowing offensive wing tactics balakov implemented in the last few weeks.

    I’m a bit dissapointed that we didn’t play as well against dinamo as we did today. Catkas had a cracker, he needs to keep up the good work so he stays in the squad. Hopefully Miso gives vukovic a chance, he’s Turing out to be a big waste of money.

    I see vukusic as another rukavina or kalinic. He’s a striker who just doesn’t have that ‘spark’ that other forwards do. He’s not much value ether considering his main specialty is playing as lone striker. Hopefully a Russian or Ukrainian club will buy him this summer.

  33. Dukić Dukić says:

    Pissed balakov is leaving. we finally needed some discipline and i think he was good for hajduk. changing coaches all the time is lame. vukusic def the best striker in hnl and has a bright future knowing croats are late bloomers. looking forward for tomislav kis coming out and playing too. he is our future. hajduk zivi vjecno.

  34. Colin O'Haravić says:

    Hajduk won, huh? So they are only 13 pts behind? I think a congratulations is in order for dinamo on this year’s championship. I’ll break out the champagne. What a league…

  35. Colin O'Haravić says:

    So now that Cacic and Mamic put Biscan on the reserves for dinamo, where does everyone think he will go from there? Will he just ride it out until his career is over, will he be called back up to the first team? Or is there still some life left in him that can be put to use by another club?

  36. Dukić Dukić says:


    bolje 7 godina za redom biti casno i posteno drugi nego 7 godina za redom osvojit kupljene titule!

  37. Pickled Underwear Dust says:

    @ The Golden Child:

    LOL. I fall asleep to Sevilla too. I don’t get GOLTV in HD and I think that may be half the problem. Although, I don’t have that problem with RM,Barca or the Bundesliga.

    I agree that Serie A is going through a Renaissance. A few seasons ago, I found it almost unwatchable.


    I agree about the big teams being the most fun to watch. I also agree that the Bundesliga seems to be the most consistent from top to bottom. Even the bottom feeder teams have technically skilled players that are fun to watch.

    Do you follow the MLS during the summer? If so, which teams/games do you deem worthy of your time?


    Since the boycott, HNL comments have gone through the roof. Perhaps this is Ante’s and Denis’s subversive strategy to get us more interested in the HNL.

  38. Ante B says:

    Bolje 26 godina ponosa nego 62 godine kompromisa

    “Tata when was the last time Hajduk beat Dinamo or won a championship?”
    “I don’t remember that far back. Go ask your dida.”

  39. Slavonac from Canada says:

    me: “dida…who is the best croatian soccer team of all time?”

    dida: “ma jebes nogomet kad ima picaka tko salata!”

  40. IvicA says:


    I get what you’re saying about Vukusic. But his goal rate, however, is better than both Kalinic and Rukavina’s ever were. That’s the thing that strikes me about him. He’s amazingly efficient for a striker that doesn’t have that magic.

    He has to test this out in a better league though. I just hope he stays healthy, continues to play well, and gets out of the HNL.

  41. Ante B says:

    I know you guys want to emulate me but there’s no reason to try to copy. Now let the real Ante B. please stand up.

    I u nebo s njim i u pakao BBB i Dinamo

  42. Mihovil Mihovil says:

    @ Slavonac from Canada

    Puno hvala!


    I have said this before and I will say it again. You are an expert in this field and a good guy as well. I just don’t see the need for the insults as we are all brothers here. I would rather have a nice discussion about our players and football to escape the monotony of the day. If I really wanted to find an argument I would just pick up the phone and call my girlfriend.


    Robin Van Persie is quite injury prone and from what I have read about him, and you touched upon this, he has quite the attitude. I have heard the same about Snyder and Robben as well. Van Persie is a great player! I just don’t see him sticking around in the EPL.

    “but like Ziva said earlier…its just easier and more accessible to watch EPL…a lot of money has been spent on how it is presented on TV…marketing!”

    Agreed. That is the “George Orwellian” influence the EPL marketing machine has on the rest of us. There is no doubt they market this league to the umpteenth level. It is more out there and easily more accessible.

    “I wanted to jump through the tv and kick the shit outta Martin Taylor when he broke Dudu’s leg…and I still see some pretty ugly tackles week in and week out…I guess it will always be part of the English football…you have no idea how many times I’ve heard a limey scream across the field at his teammate “get fucken stuck in mate!!!” during my soccer years! Its what defines them as a soccer Nation…thats why I cant stand there ways of playing…but their teams are made up of internationals that I find worth watching…at least the top teams!”

    For everything you just said is the reason I think that the bottom portion of the league and the EPL in general is a joke. That mentality and mindset is just bizarre and the tackles are brutal. The international players within the league save and make this league.

    As if the Eduardo injury was not bad enough I remember for a few days and weeks afterwards the English media would say things like, “Eduardo was too quick for Taylor and it was not his fault.” Too quick????? I was so pissed off it was unbelievable. I still am to be honest. That was beyond dirty and he received a two or three match ban. Yeeeaah Ok !

    Limey….. LOL !!!!!!!! What a term.

    Exactly one year from today we will play Serbia in Zagreb. Somebody better get the drinks ready because I do not know if I will be able to remain seated throughout the game.


  43. Colin O'Haravić says:

    @Dukic lol yeah. But if honorable and honest? I think all hnl teams are guilty of being NOT being casno i posteno.

    And yeah Biscan… Anyone have any idea what will happen to him? This there’s anything left in him or is he just done and stuck at dinamo for the rest of his career?

  44. Pickled Underwear Dust says:


    That Taylor tackle and the limey pundit’s explanation of it were both rotten.

    Shawcross is even worse than Taylor. He is brutal every week and the Brits seem to eat it up.

    I have an acquaintance from North London who happens to be a Spurs fan. He saw me wearing a St.Pauli jersey and he asked me about it. I told him that the Bundesliga is my favorite league, and he was dismissive and shocked that I don’t accept the EPL as the best in the world.

    Recently, I have found Tottenham a little on the boring side. For me, (regardless of the Hrvati on the team) they were fun to watch. Not so much anymore.

    @Matthew Lebo:

    I am a fan of Kranjcar, but what HNK said was funny.

  45. Mihovil Mihovil says:

    @ Pickled Underwear Dust

    “Shawcross is even worse than Taylor. He is brutal every week and the Brits seem to eat it up.’

    Agreed. Nothing more than a meathead really.

    “I have an acquaintance from North London who happens to be a Spurs fan. He saw me wearing a St.Pauli jersey and he asked me about it. I told him that the Bundesliga is my favorite league, and he was dismissive and shocked that I don’t accept the EPL as the best in the world”

    Yep, the arrogance is ever present about the EPL superiority. I was @ Euro 2004 going to see a game and we stopped in a pub as we were early and had time to kill. The pub was full of Brits. While conversing about football, I would mention the Bundesliga and it was met with laughter. Keep laughing!

    “Recently, I have found Tottenham a little on the boring side. For me, (regardless of the Hrvati on the team) they were fun to watch. Not so much anymore.”

    Agreed. I need my Hrvati fix though.


  46. ARMADA87 ARMADA87 says:

    Biscan isn’t leaving. Where is he going to go? Team up with Bosko Balaban and tear up the Singaporean League?! LMAO
    Dude has no where else to go to play any type of meaningful first time football. If he does eventually leave Dinamo, he’ll go to another HNL team. Probably Rijeka, since we’re swooping in now to pick up every NT reject there is.

  47. Ziva Istina says:

    Usually the highlight of playing soccer in Malaysia is picked to the Malaysia XI and getting to play one of the following: Man U/Arsenal/Barca/Real in a preseason friendly.

  48. Colin O'Haravić says:

    Spurs are coming state side in July to play NY and LA. Maybe the CS crew can ask Modric these questions in person, of course, if he is still a Spur this summer.

  49. Curt says:

    Hajduk had a great win yesterday.This is very inlighting.God bless them ,and the wonderful people of Torcida.

  50. Ziva Istina says:

    Don’t buy your tickets just yet.

    Depending on how far we go in the Euros, Spurs may decide for Modric and Kranjcar to join them later in their preseason training. If we somehow make it to the finals, that would be three weeks after the Euros end. No chance they would be with Spurs at that point. Any sane coach/club would give them at least 3 weeks off.

  51. They aren’t going to play. The same thing happened in 2010 when Tottenham came to US. They only brought players that didn’t play in the World Cup. That’s why I got to meet Modric and see Niko/Vedran. The other players that were relevant was Pavylunchenko (Russia didn’t qualify) Keane (Ireland didn’t qualify) Bale (Wales didn’t qualify) and England players that didn’t make the squad in Huddlestone and Jenas. The rest were mostly young guns. Also forgot to mention Al Hutton who is Scottish.

    Even the likes of Bassong and Assou Ekotto who played for Cameroon and got eliminated in group stage weren’t there. I’m positive that Croatian players won’t show up and I’ll probably not go but I won’t rule out not going. It be cool to go but I’m just not feeling it right now but that can easily change if Croatia plays awesome in the tournament. All I’m saying is that if your going to get tickets just for Croatians, you will be disappointed. Don’t be narrow minded people, I know some of you love to.

  52. ARMADA87 ARMADA87 says:


    I’m sure if your man-crush, Niko Kranjcar, is there you be there with a soccer ball asking for a autograph…and his number.


  53. "The Anonymous 1" says:

    @”Pointdexter” Go ahead and buy your tickets! I dont see us getting out of our group. I hope Im wrong!

  54. AllenOutraged says:

    He waved to me in 2010, I was in awe. I’m positive they aren’t likely coming like I said in 2010, people like Bassong and Assou Ekotto were eliminated from the World Cup in three games and weren’t there. Ill still go to the NY though because Bale should be there and possibly Adebeyor. Also Saha, Livermore, Friedel.

  55. Ziva istina says:

    I sense this as a great jock sniffing opportunity for some of you…at what age is it too old to be wearing a jersey of an athlete???? Wearing a jersey with no number or last name…I get that, but never understood why adults would wear a jersey of another man. Jock sniffing at it’s finest.

  56. Slavonac from Canada says:

    @Ziva – I have to agree…although then most US basketball and football fans are crotch sniffers…in fact, I believe I’ve seen a few Hrvati on this site wearing jerseys with numbers and names of NBA basketball players…I’m not calling them crotch sniffers but in the US there sure are a whole lot of ‘em!

  57. Shinobi Shinobi says:


    I also agree with this sentiment.

    Jerseys are fine, but i have to go with no name/ number on the back.

    This way its still wearable when players get traded.

  58. TheGoldenChild says:

    The only reason I buy club jerseys is because a Croatian has joined the team. Having the name and number on the back is a little show of respect, and it’s nice to see where all of our players are playing throughout the world.

  59. Ziva Istina says:

    @Slavonac………..yep, you should see all the “ballers” here in the US who wear jerseys with the names of players on the back. Nothing screams “jock sniffer” more than wearing another man’s name on your back.


    Reading the news this morning i came apon a interview srna olic i modric gave i think this is funny
    Srna: “We are a good team and we can be great at the euro and we can beat anyone”
    Olic:” if we are healthy and play to our strenght we can compete against big teams”
    Icing on the cake Lukica Modric quote;” We are better then we were in 2008 and we will show that this summer:” what type of tea his he drinking in london!

  61. It would really amaze me if Ziva Istina has any friends. I know he has a WOPPING six followers on twitter, but man you must really be some insulated man. I have plenty of jerseys with the names on the back of them. You bet I love those guys to death when I wear those jerseys. So for the 353535th time since I’ve joined the Croatian Soccer Report or whatever we call it now.
    Will you please…


  62. Slavonac from Canada says:

    @Allen…you know what dude…after all this time you should have learned something about Ziva. he rarely leaves himself open or vulnerable for criticism because he normally speaks/writes factually…and if he states his opinion they’re normally logical…I thought you’d have caught on by now? and regarding his comment about the jersey thing…he’s only saying this…how many older Croatian guys do you know walk around with a Srna Jersey…I’m talking guys who are a little older, established with families and not your typical 23 year old! he’s right dude! its only my cheesehead neighbor that hops into the car on a sunday afternoon wearing our local hockey team jersey with his favorite players name on the back…and his 12 year old with the identical jersey…you may not understand it now…but once you’re a little older you’ll get it!

    you said ziva is on twitter…hahaha…when I googled ziva istina I got a few links to a serbian movie…nothing more!

  63. Ziva Istina says:

    Allen, I am asuming you are under the age of 25? Once you hit 25 or so you will see the light and realize who strange it is for a grown man to wear the name of another man on his back. I love what Steve Jobs did with Apple and I love Apple products, but I don’t go walking around wearing a t-shirt with his name on it.

    Actually, I got plenty of friends. I’m usually a good time in social settings with plenty of stories to tell.

    @HNK…..no biggie on those quotes. Never pay attention to what pro athletes and coaches have to say in interviews. 95% of what they say is worthless. Its the same stuff all the time. Plus, what would you expect them to say? We don’t how the questions were framed and in what context. I’ve been to a million press events in my life and they are usually boring. One side gives nonpolitical and uncontroversial answers. Usually nothing productive happens, but the reporter is able to get his quotes to fit his story.

  64. Colin O'Haravić says:

    Why would I wear a jersey with a player name on the back? Well it’s more authentic, I have a few game-worn jerseys so of course those have names on the back, and I would never ever wear an English club jersey without the non-English player’s name that I support on the back of it. Just cause the name is there, doesn’t mean I wanna lick his balls, Ziva. As much knowledge as you bring to this site, you bring an equal amount of bullshit. At least you’re good at sparking up conversation, though.


    @ ziva i was just laughing at the quote because we have been very bad the last 4 years and modrics iq is like an Ovca sheep, thats all.

  66. mali HRVAT says:

    @Golden Child & Colin:

    I agree with your stance on jerseys.

    Personally, I never owned one until I had kids. I am trying to indoctrinate them to soccer and make it their norm. This is very hard to do in the US. However, it seems to working.

    My kids (4&6) can spot many of the Croatian National Team players out during games. If I throw a ball to my 4 year old son, he traps it every time. Throw a ball to a typical American kid and they will catch it.

    When I coach a child’s team, I wear a jersey (with/without names) and I actually show the children what I want them to do. It has been my experience that 300lb pear shaped NFL jersey wearing dad-coach will just bark nonsensical orders at young children during soccer games/practice.


    Do you know where I can get an Ante Razov jersey?

  67. mali HRVAT says:

    @ Colin & Golden Child:

    I am nominating both of you to share CS Personality of the Year. I hope this doesn’t come across as ball licking.

  68. Colin is the man. Please come to NY my friend, oh wait I can’t say that cause it’s ball licking.

    I have relatives that are Croatian that were Modric jerseys or wear Eli Manning jerseys. I got older friends that were NFL jerseys with players on the back of it. Your logic is stupid and that’s why I’ll never listen to you. I’ll wear jerseys forever like my Dwayne Wade Marquette jersey which is a very cool prized possession of mine. You can offer 300 dollars to me for that Wade Marquette jersey and I wouldn’t give it to you. I’m keeping that jersey and whatever children I have, they will wear it. Dwayne Wade is the man hands down my favorite athlete ever, but I’m not sure if I should say all this cause it might be ball licking.

  69. Pickled Underwear Dust says:

    Did anyone catch the Everton – Arsenal game?

    Jelavic hit English soil running. I can see him scoring 10 goals a season for Everton if he can stay healthy. He doesn’t take any guff from the opposing defenders.

    I love the fact that Tim Howard is on Everton. Fox Soccer seems to cover all of their games as a result.

    Corluka and Jelavic should thank their agents for jobs well done.

  70. TheGoldenChild says:


    Watched the game and Jelavic not only was doing his normal thing in the air, but he created a few great chances. What was nice to see is that he retrieved the ball fluidly, took the ball at the defender, and made a pass which should have lead to a goal, only to be called offside. (terrible call) Hopefully he keeps up the improvement and proves some people wrong here.


    Appreciate it. Gotta give thanks to Ziva for being an asshole though. My levelheadedness would look normal if his one sided mentality wasn’t around.

  71. mali HRVAT says:

    The linesman during the Everton-Arsenal game was awful.

    Song tried to get tough and push Jelavic. Nikica told him to suck a fart out of his butt.

  72. mali HRVAT says:

    @The Golden Child:

    mali HRVAT & Pickled are both me. I was going to switch names, but somehow my MAC keeps reverting back.

    I think Ziva is great, but he definitely makes me roll my eyes sometimes. Generally, I agree with his soccer analysis.


    I don’t know if you didn’t read it or chose to ignore it, but I will ask again.

    Do you follow the MLS during the summer? If so, which teams/games do you deem worthy of your time?

  73. mali HRVAT says:

    I have a suggestion for Croatian Sports.

    Provide Ziva with a weekly or biweekly column similar to Soccer America’s by Paul Gardner.

  74. Ziva Istina says:

    @Mali Hrvat……….I’m a soccer nut. I watch any MLS game on TV if I am at home. I have the league pass and plus with the national coverage on ESPN and NBC Sports Network there are plenty of options. Some decent games, some bad ones. I enjoy watching the games with the good fan bases that create a good atmosphere on TV ( Seattle, Portland, Philly, etc..)

    @The GoldenChild….thanks

    @Allen…..you keep wearing the name of crnci on your back. That says it all about you. What a “baller”. Just imagine that, you show respect to a guy who can play well with a ball. Well done sir.

  75. Slavonac from Canada says:

    to CSR – I like all your writeups and appreciate your effort and quality that goes into the weekly topics…that said I think Ziva has the ability, creativity and the facts that make his input to this site appealing. you should offer him a regular opportunity to do a weekly column…he’s not always popular with his comments but he’s definitely qualified and respectful enough…give him an opportunity…I think he’d bring a lot to this site and add to whats already made this a great place for all of us to bs!


  76. Ante Kvartuč Ante Kvartuč says:

    @ Slavonac,

    Like where your heads at. I agree. We’ve extended the offer multiple time. Ball is in ZI’s court now.

  77. Denis Svirčić Denis Svirčić says:

    @Slavonac/Mali Hrvat,

    Just like Ante said, “the ball is in Ziva Istina’s court.” We have his email and offered him(multiple times) a weekly or monthly column. Its up to him how he wants to proceed.

    Also, we are always open to anyone else out there interested in writing for CroatianSports.com.

  78. Colin O'Haravić says:

    @Mali/Pickle – Thanks man. Love the praise. I need to contribute here more often. And @Allen, I’m working on a NYC trip and want to plan it around the Tottenham match. I’ll let ya know what’s what when the time comes. Also I will work on getting press creds whether Hrvati are there or not.

    As for the Ziva column. Yeah, I’d read it. Then I would scoff at it and make a sarcastic smart-ass remark, but like all of you, I will go to bed and realize that he’s probably right. Except for that jersey thing. That’s just him being an ass. And you know he loves that.

    @Mali/Pickle again – I would love to see the after video of the guy who just chugged the vodka. THAT would be nice.

  79. Yeah I know Colin and totally I’ll be there with ya. As for the whole jersey thing, the fact that Ziva likes to mention balls so many times in just a few sentences tells the story. It may just be something that is always clustered in his mind. It’s a shame we don’t have more active posters that have personality that don’t come off like a complete prick.

  80. mali HRVAT says:


    I know the level of corruption and production values are better in MLS than the HNL.

    Do you think a Seattle – Portland “Derby” has better quality of play than a Hajduk-Dinamo match?

    To me, they are both feeder leagues with weak levels of play. MLS reminds me of a poor man’s version of England’s Championship.

  81. Ziva istina says:

    Yes, the guys have offered me the opportunity to write a weekly column. I appreciate it and have told them so in email exchanges. Writing quality columns takes time. Last thing I want to do is write something in five minutes that can be taken apart easily and is poorly written. I put value in writing and would do so in a column. I think I will eventually draft some columns, but need the time to do so. It is much easier going on this site a few times per day and offering replies to some of the misguided comments by some. Writing intelligent columns is another thing.

    Until then, may the jock sniffers continue to wear the names of others on their backs.

  82. Colin O'Haravić says:

    Eh, one day, Ziva will be wearing my name on his back. And if he’s lucky, I’ll even let him sniff my jock. But write a column first. Your reward is my jock.

  83. Ziva Istina says:

    @mali Hrvat……I think Dinamo is better than any team in MLS with the exception of the LA Galaxy. As for Hajduk, not so sure. They might be better than an squad as well except for the Galaxy, but I am not sure.

    The level of play/skill in a Dinamo-Hajduk match is better than most MLS matches. As bad as the corruption and the organizational operations of the HNL are, they still are able to produce talent that go to the top leagues in Europe. MLS has yet to show – although still a young league – that it can produce talent for the top Euro leagues. More MLS players end up in Scandanavia than they do in the better leagues. That said, I still watch MLS on TV.

  84. Colin O'Haravić says:

    Though Dinamo and Hajduk are probably both better than MLS teams, I’d think that top to bottom, MLS is stronger than HNL. If you take the worst HNL teams like Varazdin or Lucko, neither of them could compete in MLS. But if you take the worst MLS teams, I think they would be able to at least hold their own in the prva liga. From what I have seen the past few years, MLS has gotten stronger and might be a stronger league that HNL.

  85. mali HRVAT says:

    @Colin & Ziva:

    I do agree with your assessments. I would love to see a Dinamo – Galaxy game. IMHO they would probably be evenly matched.

    I am surprised that Dinamo don’t have a summer friendly in LA or Chicago, since they run summer camps in the states. Do they do anything in Australia?

    The fact that we are even comparing MLS to a feeder league from a nation of under 5 million people shows how weak the MLS is.

    MLS does look promising. Average game attendance surpasses NHL and NBA games.

    If every team gets their own dedicated soccer stadium and minimum pay gets increased to low 6 figures, I think the level of play and general atmosphere will improve.

    Unfortunately, I don’t see any improvement in the HNL in the near future. Maybe it is good for our players to be hungry and really want to work hard to get out of the HNL. Additionally, it is in management’s interest to develop the talent to sell for club and personal profit.

  86. Ziva istina says:

    @Mali hrvat……the dinamo summer camps are not that significant and nothing more an a way to make some money for the dinamo coaches coming over. Only two kids have impressed enough to be offered a chance to train in zagreb. One is an American or a Mexican kid from Vegas and the other kid is a Croat from cleveland.

    As for dinamo coming over to n.America….they wouldn’t draw a big crowd, so nobody would make money. They were in Toronto a few years ago for a game with rangers. I think the attendance was below half of capacity.

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