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Niko Kovač: “Croatians Will Be Proud. We Will Not Give Up”

CroatiaCroatia head coach Niko Kovač is convinced that his team will not disappoint in the World Cup opening match tonight against the hosts and tournament favourites Brazil…

“Everybody knows how much it means to us to play for Croatia. We will give our best in this historic match and I can assure that Croatians will be proud. We will try and surprise the hosts, and will not give up until the end. In the right circumstances, Croatia can make history”, he said.

The battle in midfield could be crucial, he repeated, and believes that Brazil has also a lot to think about.

“We have seen that it is possible to play against Brazil. Moreover, there are not a lot of teams that enjoy playing Croatia. Croatia is a tough opponent and will show that in Sao Paulo. Like Brazil, we love to have possession and we will try to score, keeping clean sheet in the process”, said Kovač.

Darijo Srna, Croatia captain, sent a message to all of the supporters of the national team:

“I can not promise you that Croatia will win the World Cup, that Croatia will defeat Brazil, or that Croatia will go through to the second round. What I can promise you is that we will fight, and give all that we have in us. We want to make you proud”.

The World Cup opening match is a special opportunity to shine.

“Every Croatian will be able to enjoy, we are playing one of the best teams in the world, but in football miracles are possible”, said Srna.
“Considering the World Cup organization, I can only praise everyone that welcomed us in Salvador and Tivoli Ecoresort. Our hosts are nice, friendly and fair, and in Sao Paulo everyone was at a high professional level. The hotel and the pitch are excellent, and I eagerly await this football spectacle”, he concluded.

Left back Danijel Pranjić has been ruled out of the match with through injury and will be replaced by Šime Vrsaljko in the starting eleven. (Drago Sopta / HNS)

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