Dinamo Zagreb found their second win this weekend after defeating NK Zagreb 2-0 at Kranjčevićeva.
NK Zagreb is still without a win and sit in last place with two losses and two draws.The match started with Dinamo controlling the pace and creating early chances on goal via Junior Fernandes and Ante Čorić, but both players were denied goals by the young Dominik Livaković.
Armin Hodžić continued his form from last week and scored the game’s opening goal in the 13th minute. Čorić sent in a cross that overshot his teammates, but Zagreb midfielder, Ivan Ljubičić attempted to clear the cross but fed the ball directly to an open Hodžić who easily put the ball past Livaković for the goal.
Filip Krovinović set up Zagreb’s first chance on goal in the 38th minute, bring the ball up field and taking on the Dinamo defense. Krovinović found Gabriel Boban who put the shot on net, but was gave goalkeeper Eduardo no difficulty. The 46th minute saw Zagreb tie the match with a goal scored by Lorvo Medić, but the goal was ruled offside and disallowed.
At closer look, Medić was in fact onside when he received the lofted pass before scoring.
Arijan Ademi nearly scored on an impressive individual effort after taking on and beating several Zagreb players on his own. Ademi was able to get the shot off and beat Livaković, but hit the post with his effort and was denied an impressive goal. But Hodžić was able to give Dinamo the comfortable two-goal lead they were looking for in the 73rd minute. Ivo Pinto ran the ball from mid field and sent a pinpoint pass to Hodžić who faced and beat Livaković on a one-on-one.
Dinamo was only able to beat the Poets once last season, and beat them with an identical score of 2-0.
Hajduk Split’s perils continued over the weekend when they welcomed Slaven Belupo to Poljud, drawing them 2-2.
Slaven nearly achieved a historic victory over the Bili after taking a 2-0 lead early in the first half. The Pharmacists opened the game up with quick and open play and struck first in the 19th minute with a goal from Ljuban Crepulja.
A quick one-two pass from Crepulja and Muzafer Eujpi led to Crepulja rushing the goal, using his speed to remain untouched by the defense before slotting the ball far post into the net. Filip Ozobić followed suit and scored Slaven’s second goal only seven minutes later. High pressure from Slaven forced a turnover from Hajduk. Ozobić intercepted a poor back pass attempt and found himself one-on-one with Lovre Kalinić, beating him on the far post.
But the Bili would not take the 2-0 deficit lying down. The second half brought new life to Hajduk and it started with a goal scored by Elvir Maloku in the 59th minute. Maloku cleverly chipped the goalkeeper from about 15 yards out for the impressive goal and cut the deficit in half. Goran Milović tied the match only 10 minutes later with a goal shot through traffic from a similar distance.
With the match knotted up, each team was looking for the breaking goal, but each team was denied their attempts, dispute the viable chances that were presented. With the draw, Hajduk sits in ninth place with three points and Slaven sits one space a head of them with three points also.
Slaven’s winless streak at Poljud will continue with a draw. Slaven have never beaten Hajduk at Poljud since they joined the Prva Liga in 1997. They have only defeated Hajduk six times since then and they have all been home victories.
Rijeka was relieved on Sunday after they found their first win of the season, beating Lokomotiva 3-1 at their new and temporary Rujevici stadium that was filled with 5,700 fans.
Rijeka’s victory came at their first match in the temporary home while a new Kantrida is being built on the site of the old one. Marin Leovac scored the game’s first goal in the seventh minute but his goal would be outdone by Lokomotiva’s Franko Andrijašević who scored in the 25th minute to tie it up.
But Roman Bezjak’s 35th minute goal gave Rijeka the lead at halftime and they never looked back. Anas Sharbini scored in the 60th minute to bring Rijeka ahead by two goals and gave the final score of 3-1. Rijeka is climbing the latter to the top of the table and sit in fourth place. Lokomotiva sit two points back in sixth place, but both clubs know that it is early in the season and they are both still viable candidates for league champions.
NK Istra 1961 find themselves now in third place after their 2-2 draw to NK Osijek on Saturday in the Garden City.
It took until the second half for either team to find the back of the net, but Antonio Repić finally opened the scoring in the 53rd minute. Antonio Perosević did the same in the 67th minute and tied the game with a goal of his own.
Istra regained the lead with a goal from Stefan Nikolić and continued their search for goals. The Puljani nearly made the match 3-1 in the 95th minute of play with a one-on-one between Nikolić and Borna Žitnjak, but žitnjak came out victorious in that battler and kept Osijek’s deficit at one goal. Osijek marched down the field only seconds later and found the equalizer in the dying seconds of the match.
Andrej Lukić scored the winning goal and forced Istra to split the points, each taking one.
NK Inter Zapresić and RNK Split played to a scoreless draw on Saturday in Zapresić.
The draw forced Split to take only one point from the match, and leave them even with Dinamo Zagreb. A victory would have allowed them to remain as the sole possessor of first place, but now sit with eight points.
Inter were pleased to remain with only one loss after the week’s end, and were awarded their third point of the season for their efforts.