the study of the kicking components within sports

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Croatia Men's National Soccer Team News


June 7, 2015 - Sharbini, Kovačić, Mandžukić & Kramarić score in 4-0 win over Gibraltar
"Croatia was without Modrić (injury) and Ivan Rakitić (Champions League Final) in a match that saw a starting XI of Subašić, Vrsaljko, Jedvaj, Lešković, Leovac, Badelj, Pjaca, Brozović, Kovačić, Sharbini, Mandžukić see a few new faces. Sharbini and Kovačić would both score inside 15 minutes with Mandžukić converting a penalty in the 52nd and Kramarić adding a fourth in the 77th minute." - Croatian Sports

March 28, 2015 - Brozović, Perišić, Mandžukić, Schildenfeld & Pranjić score in 5-1 win over Norway
"Croatia remained unbeaten and top of UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group H after an ultimately comfortable victory against Norway in Zagreb. Home coach Niko Kovač was able to include Luka Modrić, who had not trained for three days due to flu. The Real Madrid CF midfielder had a hand in the opening goal, sending a low pass to the right for Ivica Olić, who picked out Marcelo Brozović for a superb finish from more than 20 metres.... In the second half another Kovač decision came good; the coach had preferred Ivan Perišić to Andrej Kramarić and, nine minutes after the restart, Perišić scored his fourth goal in as many qualifying matches. The midfielder played a one-two with Ivan Rakitić and fired into the opposite corner of the net. It was soon 3-0, Mario Mandžukić playing in Olić to slide in, and Norway's fast-fading hopes were effectively extinguished three minutes later. Vedran Ćorluka fouled Tarik Elyounoussi, who picked himself up to take the penalty himself, only for his effort to rebound off the woodwork. Corluka collected his second yellow card of the evening with 16 minutes remaining, and Norway pulled one back through Alexander Tettey's strike. Hopes of an unlikely comeback came to nothing, however, as Croatia scored twice in the closing stages to complete a comprehesive win. First substitute Gordon Schildenfeld got in front of his marker at the near post to head in Darijo Srna's corner, before Modrić's neat feet gave him the chance to slip in Danijel Pranjić on the left. The full-back's initial effort was beaten away by Ørjan Nyland but the No3 collected the rebound and found the net with a deflected shot." - UEFA

October 13, 2014 - lots of kicking in win over Azerbaijan
"Croatia thrashed Azerbaijan 6-0 in their Euro 2016 qualifier in Osijek on Monday, a first half double from substitute Ivan Perisic helping them continue their 100 percent start with a third successive win in Group H. Against a side whose game plan was simply to defend at all costs, it still took only 11 minutes for Croatia to forge ahead as Andrej Kramaric converted from close range after a precise cross from Darijo Srna. Perisic, on the substitutes' bench, may have been expecting to miss out on any goal deluge but was given an unexpected early chance to shine when Mateo Kovacic had to come off injured after 24 minutes. Ten minutes later, Vfl Wolfsburg winger Perisic headed home Ivan Rakitic's free kick and, in the dying moments of the first half as Azerbaijan's defence completely fell apart, he made it three with a fine header from Danijel Pranjic's cross. Two minutes into first half stoppage time, Luka Modric's brilliant pass set up Marcelo Brozovic to make it four before Modric himself converted a penalty after the break following a foul on Srna. An own goal by Rashad Sadygov completed Azerbaijan's misery just after the hour mark." - Yahoo

October 10, 2014 - own goal provides win over Bulgaria
"Croatia rode their luck in Sofia to beat Bulgaria 1-0 and claim their second victory from two games in Group H of the European Championship qualifiers. The decisive moment arrived nine minutes before the break when Ivan Rakitic's free-kick was headed on by Ivan Perisic and turned into his own net by defender Nikolay Bodurov." - Sky Sports

September 26, 2014 - roster changes
"Croatia will be without three key players for next month's UEFA EURO 2016 qualifiers away to Bulgaria and at home to Azerbaijan. QPR's Niko Kranjcar, midfielder Milan Badelj of Fiorentina and Getafe's Sammir are all absent from the 25-man squad named on Friday by coach Niko Kovac. But Kovac has called up three uncapped players in Dinamo Zagreb's midfielder Domagoj Antolic along with defender Ivan Tomecak and midfielder Marko Leskovic, both from Rijeka." - FIFA

September 9, 2014 - Modrić & Kramarić score in win over Malta
"Luka Modrić scored on his 29th birthday and substitute Andrej Kramarić added a second as Croatia were forced to battle hard to take three points against ten-man Malta in their Group H opener.... It was a completely different story after the restart, as from the first attack, Darijo Srna laid off for Modrić in the middle and the Real Madrid CF midfielder drove a low shot into the bottom corner from 20m on the occasion of his 80th cap. The Croatian domination continued after the goal and they looked much more dangerous than in the first period. Chances came in quick succession, but the goal that wrapped it up did not arrive until the 81st minute. Kramarić received a well-weighted pass from fellow substitute Nikica Jelavić and shot low to seal the three points." - UEFA

September, 4, 2014 - Mandzukic scores brace in win over Cyprus
"In its first match after the World Cup appearance in Brazil, Croatia entertained Cyprus in Pula and won 2:0....  Croatian supporters at Aldo Drosina Stadium finally celebrated a goal in 18th minute, when Modrić's perfect pass to Kramarić ended at Mandžukić's feet. Atletico Madrid striker easily put the ball into the net.... Niko Kovač's men doubled their lead in 58th minute. Kovačić broke through Cyprus defence, and Mandžukić calmly waited for the rebound to make it 2:0." - HNS

June 18, 2014 - Mario Mandzukic doubles in win over Cameroon
"Mario Mandzukic scored two goals Wednesday to keep Croatia in the mix at the World Cup with a 4-0 win over 10-man Cameroon, which cannot now advance from the group stage. Mandzukic, who returned to the team at the Arena da Amazonia after sitting out the opening loss to Brazil through suspension, headed in a corner from Danijel Pranjic in the 61st minute and then knocked in a rebound in the 73rd of the Group A game. Ivan Perisic also scored one goal and made another for Ivica Olic." - Washington Post

June 6, 2014 - Jelavic scores in win over Australia
"Nikica Jelavic scored in the 58th minute to give Croatia a 1-0 win over Australia in the teams' final warm-up match before the World Cup. The Hull striker was given plenty of room after receiving a pass inside the box and rocketed the ball from close range past Australia goalkeeper Mat Ryan.... Croatia has several injury concerns with Greece-based defender Danijel Pranjic replaced with an apparent ankle injury. And Eduardo da Silva suffered an injury to his right leg and was substituted off in the 79th minute." - Daily Mail

May 31, 2014 - World Cup roster named
Goalkeepers: 
  • Stipe Pletikosa (Rostov)
  • Danijel Subasic (Monaco)
  • Oliver Zelenika (Dinamo Zagreb)
Defenders: 
  • Darijo Srna (Shakhtar Donetsk)
  • Dejan Lovren (Southampton)
  • Vedran Corluka (Lokomotiv Moscow)
  • Gordon Schildenfeld (Panathinaikos)
  • Danijel Pranjic (Panathinaikos)
  • Domagoj Vida (Dynamo Kiev)
  • Sime Vrsaljko (Genoa)
Midfielders: 
  • Luka Modric (Real Madrid)
  • Ivan Rakitic (Sevilla)
  • Ognjen Vukojevic (Dynamo Kiev)
  • Ivan Perisic (VfL Wolfsburg)
  • Mateo Kovacic (Inter Milan)
  • Marcelo Brozovic (Dinamo Zagreb)
  • Sammir (Getafe)
  • Ivan Mocinic (Rijeka)
Forwards: 
  • Mario Mandzukic (Bayern Munich)
  • Ivica Olic (VfL Wolfsburg)
  • Eduardo da Silva (Shakhtar Donetsk)
  • Nikica Jelavic (Hull City)
  • Ante Rebic (Fiorentina)
May 31, 2014 - Ivan Perisic kicks team to win over Mali
"Croatia midfielder Ivan Perisic scored a goal in each half to give the Balkan country a 2-1 win over Mali in their home send-off to next month's World Cup in Brazil.... Left wing Perisic enjoyed one of his best international performances and fired Croatia ahead in the 15th minute, curling a superb shot with his weaker, right foot into the top left corner after a defence-splitting pass by Ivan Rakitic. Perisic doubled the lead shortly after the hour when he stabbed home a Rakitic corner which was headed into his path by striker Ivica Olic before substitute Fantamady Diarra pulled one back for the visitors." - Yahoo

May 26, 2014 - injured Niko Kranjcar to miss World Cup
Queens Park Rangers' on-loan playmaker limped out of Saturday's Championship play-off final, sparking fears that he would play no part on Brazil this summer.... A statement posted on the Croatian Football Association's official Twitter account read: 'Croatian midfielder Niko Kranjcar will miss the World Cup due to hamstring injury.' National team doctor Boris Nemec told Jutarnji list: 'Niko Kranjcar has ruptured his hamstring. The rupture is some inches wide and will need between four and six weeks to heal'." - Sky Sports

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