Croatian football coach Igor Stimac has praised the substitutions he made saying they were the catalyst in his side’s come from behind 1:2 win over Wales in Swansea in their Group A World Cup qualifier last night.
Croatia went into the break 1:0 down after Tottenham Hotspurs winger Gareth Bale converted a spot kick after Dejan Lovren brought down Welsh midfielder Joe Ledley in the box. With Croatia struggling to create any clear chances Stimac turned to his bench and bought on two of his stars from Friday nights victory over Serbia Mateo Kovacic and work horse Ivica Olic.
The substitutions proved to be vital as Lovren got Croatia back into the match with a scorching 25 yard swurving strike. With just 3 minutes remaining Kovacic and Olic combined to set up striker Eduardo who thumped in the winner to give Croatia 6 points inside 5 days and keep their Brazil campaign on track.
“The substitutions we made proved to be decisive, we have a good bench and I am happy that for the first time we showed we can also come from behind and chase the win. The guys were tired from Friday and Wales were motivated but we deserved the win,” said Stimac.