After his stunning strike against Barcelona last week, the spotlight has again been shining on teenage Croatian diaspora talent Luka Sučić.
Born in Linz, Austria, the left-footed creative midfielder is tipped by many to be the real deal and his 25 metre strike last week in Red Bull Salzburg’s 2-1 win over Barcelona further confirmed that.
Just before this year’s Euros, Borna Sosa hit the headlines after he announced his wish to play for Germany after the German FA expressed interest in him.
Whilst the Austrian FA’s interests has been piqued in the Austrian born player, Sučić has confirmed there will not be a ‘Sosa-gate’ scenario and there is only one national team in his sights.
“There are a lot of Croats who play or have played for Austria. The Austrians called three months ago to play for the Austria U-21 team, they also said I would then get a chance to play in the A team but I turned them down. That is because I always had the wish to play for Croatia. That is how it will stay,” Sučić told daily Sportske novosti.
Sučić says the Austrians are constantly trying to secure him but he says it is all in vain.
“They will never get me. I tell them Croatia is my choice and I will not change anything. I feel like a Croat.”
He says that his parents told him to decide what his heart told me.
“My uncle also told me: “You better play for Croatia.”
Both of his parents, father Željko and mother Branislava, moved from Bugojno to Austria 25 years ago.
The 18-year-old made his Bundesliga debut last year and also his Champions League debut in the same season against Bayern Munich. He has already represented Croatia at youth level in the U15, U16, U17 and U19 team. He was selected by Igor Bišćan’s for the group stage of UEFA Under-21 Euro 2021 but was ruled out due to an injury.
Current Croatia U-19 coach, former international Joe Šimunić , said if Sučić remains healthy it is just a matter of time before he gets called up to the senior national team.
“I am of the opinion that, if he stays healthy, Sučić will soon be part of the A national team,” Šimunić says.
Sučić says his idol is current Croatia captain and namesake Luka Modrić, the man he could well replace in the centre of midfield.
“Messi I like but my idol is Luka Modrić:”
You can check out Sučić’s strike against Barcelona here