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Joe Šimunić no longer Croatia U-19 coach

The Croatian Football Federation has mutually agreed to part ways with Josip Šimunić, current coach of the Croatia U-19 national team, HNS announced on Thursday. 

Šimunić took over the Croatian U-19 national team in May 2019, and over the past four years, he led the team in 38 games, during which he recorded 19 wins, 10 draws and nine losses. 

He reached the elite qualification round for the European Championships three times with Croatia, and during his tenure two final tournaments were canceled due to the pandemic.

“I thank Josip for his efforts during the past four years when he led the Croatian U-19 national team. With his experience, knowledge and enthusiasm, he certainly contributed to the development of our young footballers, and as a celebrated member of the national team, he was able to convey to them what the Croatian jersey means and represents. I am glad that we have jointly recognised that it is time for a change, and I wish Josip much success in his future career – the doors of Croatian football will always be open to him,” said HNS president Marijan Kustić.

“Thank you to President Kustić and the leadership of the federation for the opportunity they gave me, and it was truly a pleasure to lead the Croatian U-19 national team for the past four years. I wish the pandemic had not denied us the opportunity for greater continuity, but we could not influence those circumstances,” Šimunić said, adding.

“I would like to thank all the colleagues in the staff, the players and the people from the federation for their excellent cooperation, because of which this period will remain a very nice memory for me – representing Croatia, either as a player or a coach, is the greatest possible honour in football for me and will always remain so,” said Josip Šimunić.

Born and raised in Australia, ‘Joe’ Šimunić played 105 times for Croatia from 2001 to 2013, and took part in five major tournaments – 2002 and 2006 World Cups, as well as the 2004, 2008 and 2012 European Championships. 

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