Croatia held its final training session last night before it takes on Spain in the penultimate UEFA Nations League match.
Zagreb’s Maksimir stadium is sold out for tonight’s match which kicks off at 20:45, and last night the team went through their paces for the final time.
Croatia head coach Zlatko Dalić and team captain Luka Modrić talked to the press before the session.
“First of all, I would like to thank all the fans for buying all the available tickets. If many more were available, we would still play in front of the full crowd. Everybody is ready for the match but Pivarić, who has only recently recovered and we will be taking no chances with him. Jedvaj or Milić will play the left-back, and Kalinić will stand between the posts. In Elche, Croatia performed excellently for the first 20 minutes but failed to convert chances. Now, we do not seek revenge, but a really important victory. If we win, we can decide who tops the group against England at Wembley, and what an encounter that would be, just like the World Cup semifinals. Spain does not focus on possession anymore, but on quick, direct moves, and we have to be careful – they were brilliant against us and we have to respect this”
“As always, we enjoy good team spirit on the eve of a really difficult match. We do not think about revenge, this will be an entirely new match, in front of our fans, and Croatia has to be patient and wise, staying true to its style until the end. We will give our best, supported by the cheers from the stands, and I believe we can achieve a positive result. Back in September, we were emotionally and physically empty, and that’s normal in football. However, now we are in a better shape, and we need to present this on the pitch. Playing for Croatia is our main driving force, regardless of the competition or the opponent. Spain is full of great players, and their new manager has brought new energy and created a compact team that knows what to do. Still, we are not afraid, and we can win”
Photos from last night’s final training session.