WC 2018: Croatia

Group D

Croatia is a relative newcomer to the world’s biggest football tournament, having first participated in 1998 in France as an independent nation. In the earlier 1900s, the country was a part of Yugoslavia, and participated as such. Croatia just made the play-offs to enter their second consecutive WC, despite the team having numerous young players who were capable of producing an even better performance.
As it stands, Croatia is a relatively strong team led by Luka Modric, Mario Mandzukic, Ivan Perisic and Ivan Rakitic. The team has 4 WC appearances under its belt to date, making the WC 2018 in Russia this squad’s fifth participation in the renowned event.

Team Members

  • Danijel Subašić - GK
  • Lovre Kalinić - GK
  • Dominik Livaković - GK
  • Vedran Ćorluka - Defender
  • Domagoj Vida - Defender
  • Ivan Strinić - Defender
  • Šime Vrsaljko - Defender
  • Josip Pivarić - Defender
  • Tin Jedvaj - Defender
  • Dejan Lovren - Defender
  • Matej Mitrović - Defender
  • Luka Modrić - Midfielder
  • Ivan Rakitić - Midfielder
  • Ivan Perišić - Midfielder
  • Mateo Kovačić - Midfielder
  • Marko Rog - Midfielder
  • Marcelo Brozović - Midfielder
  • Milan Badelj - Midfielder
  • Mario Mandžukić - Forward
  • Nikola Kalinić - Forward
  • Andrej Kramarić - Forward
  • Marko Pjaca - Forward

Coach

Zlatko Dalic

Dalic has captained the Croatian team since October 2017, when he replaced Ante Cacic as the Balkan team’s coach. Dalic has since led Croatia through a successful play-off, in which they won 4-1 against Greece and secured their place in Russia for 2018. Dalic has previously served as a coach for UAE team Al-Ain, leading them to the champions’ league finals in AFC 2016.

Past WC History

The Croatians have appeared in the WC finals on 4 separate occasions since the country won its independence in 1991; in 1998, 2002, 2006, and 2014. In 1198 they came third in the Cup in France and are hoping for as good, or better result this year. Prior to that, Croatia and its team were actually a part of Yugoslavia from the inaugural WC event in 1930 up until 1990.

Stats

  • First appeared as an independent nation in 1998
  • 4 appearances, 4 qualifying campaigns
  • Last appearance in 2014
  • 1 semi-final appearance
  • No championships
  • Best result: Third place in WC 1998

Kit

Croatia’s WC 2018 kits are designed and made by Nike. Their home kit includes a bold red and white chequered shirt with solid red sleeves and a subtle zigzag pattern between each square. The away kit features the same chequered style of shirt in navy and black, with black shorts and red socks completing the uniform.