Published on 18 Dec 2022 12:14 pm (UK Time)
Luka Modric’s time in the World Cup has drawn to a close as Croatia secured a third-place finish in the tournament by beating Morocco 2-1.
The third-place play-off match between Morocco and Croatia was a tight contest as both teams carved out a sufficient number of goal-scoring opportunities which would have put their respective teams ahead if they converted the chances however despite the attacking prowess of both the teams Croatia were the one that triumphed.
Josko Gvardiol who is touted to be one of the tournament’s rising stars gave Croatia the lead as he got on the end of a lovely headed cross by Perisic in the 7th minute, Morocco instantly levelled the score as Achraf Dari found the back of the net in the 9th minute after he headed home a deflected cross from Ziyech.
Despite the goal-scoring opportunities created by both teams, Mislav Orsic’s curler in the 42nd minute decided the outcome of the game as Morocco failed to find the back of the net for the second time.
Luka Modric who again played a crucial role in Croatia’s 3rd place finish scooped up the player of the match award.
The 37-year-old’s classy attitude was on full display not just on the pitch, but also after the game. Modric delighted a member of the Moroccan staff by taking a selfie with him.
At 37, this will be Luka Modric’s last outing in the World Cup as he would be 41 when the next World Cup comes knocking however the Real Madrid man has insisted that he is not done with his international career as he is looking forward to playing in the upcoming tournaments which is the Nations League in 2023 and the Euros in 2024. Speaking after the game he said (via Football Espana)
“Yes, this is my last game in a World Cup, but I can’t say anything else. I’m very happy with my career for Croatia. Winning two medals is very important. My dream was to win a World Cup, but that hasn’t happened. Croatia has a great team, with a very good future, and we have to continue. In the future, we’ll see what happens. At least I want to continue until the Nations League, and then we’ll see what happens.”
The Real Madrid talisman has helped Vatreni secure yet another podium finish after the country finished the 2018 FIFA World Cup as a runner-up.
The Croatian boss Zlatko Dalic had nothing but praise for the captain of the Croatian team. He also said that Modric won’t be retiring from international football just yet.
“He’s our captain, he’s our big boss. He played fantastically in this tournament at 37 years old, he played like he was 20. Some people think this is the end, but I think Luka Modric stays with us for a long time.”
Croatia will now look forward to the beginning of the Nations League in 2023 as they are eying European glory by lifting the prestigious cup.